How to pick-up the leaves

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Newbie07, Sep 3, 2005.

  1. Newbie07

    Newbie07 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    O.K. I have spent some time searching the threads on how to pick up leaves and I have found out some good stuff but i am still confused and being that I am only 16 I dont have the resources or money to get some of the set ups u guys have. My friend and I are going to hopefully get about 25 to 30 yards in the spring just to let you know where we want to go so we can get equipment to use for that also. We do not have any equipment at all so any suggestions would be very much appreciated. We will look at two 21 inch mowers with baggers and a back pack blower, trailer and rakes that junk. With these tools how do you do it. We dont have a vac so do you blow everything to the yard, mulch two or three times and then bag it and dump it in the trailer. i think we could put the tarp in the bottom of the trailer and then just drag that off at the dump. i am also confused on how to blow out the flower beds? Would you not also blow out all of the mulch, dirt? Oh yeah, also since we do not have any yards it is not a regular thing. We are going to hane out fliers in about 2 weeks and then should we do it once in october, once in november? Most people say that it is dumb to do it all at once. I was thinking about 35 to 45 dollars an hour but that seems like a lot of money. That is what people say but i seems kind of high. i dont want to lowball though. Thank you very much in advance. Sorry for all of the questions ot once but i want to be prepared.

    Thanks,
    Travis
     
  2. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,164

    Just blow everything to the trailer. Even by mulching a few times with the 21's, the bags are going to fill up so fastt. I used to just rake everything until i got my leaf vac, best thing i have ever purchased. It saved me sooo much time and effort in the race to clean up leaves before dark. This year i am using my exmark to do what you guys want to do with the 21's. Good Luck guys, any more questions you can PM me or email me at mcwlandscaping@yahoo.com. Being around the same age i can understand money and time constraints due to school and sports really well! Once again, Good Luck!
     
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    For what you have to use, you pretty much have the right idea, except for the bagging part. There isn't enough time in the world to do this with pushmower baggers. That is like shoveling a pile of dirt with a teaspoon.
    These bags will only hold so much. What you would want to do in this case, is row the leaves up in long rows (they don't have to be super neat and tight). Then, take a tarp and pull it along the length of the row. You push the stuff up onto the tarp with the rakes (or legs and feet if it's REAL deep and heavy - whatever works faster for the time). When you get that section raked up onto the tarp, you just pull the tarp down to the next section. Actually, pull it a little FARTHER than just "squaring it up" with the edge to the end of the row. Now, when you are doing this, DON'T FUSS with every last little leaf that happens to go under the edge of the tarp. After you pull the tarp down and away from that section, you will quickly backtrack and rake the little debris that was left behind up with no interference. Now, when you lay the tarp down next to the pile or row, leave about 6" or so gap, and STEP ON the edges of the tarp - pulling it tight to flick the leaves onto it. After this gets to be routine, you and your partner will be able to move right along with it and be very productive. You will get good so there isn't a whole lot of unnecessary moves. When the tarp starts getting a bit heavy, you drag it to the truck - trailer - field - or wherever you're going to dump it. If your lifting onto the truck, you twist your corners to your end up a bit and choke up on it, lift and swing the tarp (on two). This gets inertia up and saves alot of work. DO NOT stand there and "Ok, on three." That is too much wasted time. One swing saying "ok, ready?" "and DO IT" is on your two ( second swing). ....quick and easy.
    Another thing, when you are picking stuff up, always start from the FARTHEST point and work toward the direction that you are going to dump it. Why? Because there is no sense in picking up weight, then dragging AWAY from where you're going to dump it, just to drag it back again. I hope this helps, and this is the kind of thing that you just "learn" over doing it for years. It took me a LONG time of making "piles" before I realized how much time and energy I was wasting shfting stuff back and forth in directions that weren't productive. Skip that step and just rake from the row.
     
  4. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Do yourself a favor and do "layers" of tarps. You'll be surprised at how HEAVY leaves get, especially mulched up leaves!
    So put a tarp on the bottom as you said, but just put a layer of leaves on it and then put down another tarp, and so on.
    Then when you get to the dump, you pull off one tarp at a time, much easier.
     
  5. Newbie07

    Newbie07 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    Hey you guys thanks a lot for the help. i appreciate everything. I talked to Mike all day yesterday(Thanks Man) and learned a lot from him. I am looking at the 8 foot trailer at home depot and will not worry about baggin all of it. I will definitely layer the leaves thanks gogetter and mike told me how to put sides on the trailer. Runner you said to get them into piles???? Do you blow them into rows about 10 feet apart so that u can still ge the tarp down the rows??? Thanks again, anyone alse have anything to add. PLEASE

    Thanks Again,
    Travis
     
  6. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,494

    There's no telling HOW far the rows will be from each other. That is sepending on the density of the material you're moving, versus the moving power - whatever you're using to move them i.e. mower, backpack blowers, rakes, pushblowers, portable house fans, airplane propellors, jet engines, etc..
    The other thing...I said NOT to pile them up is seperate piles. Just leave them in rows and pick the rows up. Oiling is a waste of time and energy, and it makes MORE work for you because then you are pushing MORE weight onto the tarp at once.
     
  7. Newbie07

    Newbie07 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    oh ok, that cleared it up thank you runner :p i should have known that. Thank you
     
  8. hole in one lco

    hole in one lco LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,793

    if your mower is a side discharge just mow in a circle this puts all the leaves in a pile get your tarp and your done
     
  9. Newbie07

    Newbie07 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    So all you have to do is start at the outside and move inside. Will the leaves keeping moving in or will i get to the end and find a small pile of mulched leaves and not even need the tarp?? I hope that does not sound sarcastic, i was just wondering is this picking up the leaves or mulching them????

    Travis :waving:
     
  10. hole in one lco

    hole in one lco LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,793

    mulching you can put your bagger on to pickup the pile or rake on to a tarp.
     

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