How did you get started?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Josh.S, Sep 12, 2009.

  1. Josh.S

    Josh.S LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,085

    How did you get started in the lawn application business?

    I figure that most of you guys started by either (A) Mowing yards then got an applicators license or (B) Worked at ChemLawn, TruGreen, or Scott's and then went out on your own.

    Myself, I purchased a spraying business with no previous experience, and then took the applicators license test before the spring. How about you?
     
  2. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Posts: 5,846

    Had about a dozen years with ChemlLawn corp. (not Tru Green). Rented a small corner of a wareouse for a couple years when we 'went on our own'. Used a garden hose to fill. This got us off to a good start. The rest was history, as we expended after that.
     
  3. tlg

    tlg LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 645

    I worked 13 years for a large independent company. We had about 8500 customers when they sold out to TGCL. I was in business the following spring. Smartest thing my wife ever talked me into. It's our 12th season now. I pay myself well. I work when I want to. The business will be my retirement. TGCL was calling after the second year in business. Gotta love it! Kinda ironic isn't it. TGCL put me were I'm at and they will most likely take me out of it all over again. Show me the money!:cool2:
     
  4. Joshuakwhit

    Joshuakwhit LawnSite Member
    Posts: 247

    Been with Scotts three yrs.. Hope to spread my wings and fly next season. Pretty sure corporate(with corp. one yr. before transfering) will be buying out our franchise(I hate corp.). Photo copy of trubrown.
     
  5. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Posts: 6,041

    Pure luck for me!

    Going into college I had absolutly NO interest in turf. Took one class and it was history from there! I actually liked it almost more then ag.

    I am not sure how it all got going...but so glad it did!

    Started doing some lawns on the side and just started my business.

    I was just thinking today after seeding lawns today... that is takes most people a month to make what I did in 8 hours (and this was on a Saturday)!

    God had to be looking down on me when I got into this!

    So glad I got into this business (sometimes)! :laugh:
     
  6. grassman177

    grassman177 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,795

    we started out as a lawn maintenance company mowing and shrub trimming and leaves. you know the drill. i got the degree in collge and pesticides was a course and thought of the future in full service. my got me a scotts spreader and a back pack sprayer with a 48 in boom to start with. i got 12 smaller yards to start with and "prove " i could get results. the next year we got a 200 gal tank and like 50 customers. it has only grown from there. pretty typical start i guess, but got into it at a good time here
     
  7. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,903

    Major in Botany and Plant Pathology. Worked for TruGreen for 4 years, then a couple other companies. Then went on my own, used Ford F-150 pickup ($1200), 200 gallon sprayer, and cheap spreader,($19.95). Bought new stainless Scotts spreader. 20 years later, it worked out just fine. I enjoy not working for someone else.
     
  8. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    I am the kind of guy that you have to prove something to me with concrete evidence!!
    There are 3 things in this business that tears me to the core!!
    1. Lies
    2. More Lies
    3. Even More Lies
    When you are lied to about grass sod not rooting on a good customers lawn that is preemerge treated-watered and fertilized.
    When the seed you sow didn't germinate because of preemerge applications.
    When the pines suddenly die after an application of Ammonium Nitrate and you are blamed for their death and they say it wasn't their fault.
    When bare root shrubbery decline and loose lower leaves after pre and post emerge applications.
    When the lawns are tracked up after a fert application and you take the blame for it all the time. Fertilizer track burn!!
    When the customer starts coming to you for answers that the other company won't call them back for!!!!

    This was the time....................back 10 years ago!!!!!!
     
  9. NatesLawnCareLLC

    NatesLawnCareLLC LawnSite Member
    from Iowa
    Posts: 79

    I started out with mowing and doing general maintenance and then saw it was a class took it independent study and then just picked up clients that I was mowing for who were having other people apply their chemicals for them. Pretty simple once you have the basics and have a good understanding of what the chemicals that your putting down do.
     
  10. RedMaple Lawns

    RedMaple Lawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 34

    I haven't gotten my app. license yet, but I worked for TruGreen for a while and am now maintaining a couple of lawns on the side. I plan to work on a business plan over the winter and get my app. license by next spring! I'd like to have two divisions to my company in the future -- lawn maint. (mowing/trimming) and chemicals (fert and weed control). I'll prob. start out with a 200 gal. sprayer in my Ford Ranger...or maybe backpack sprayers depending on how many customers I get in the first year.
     

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