Pacific Northwest - selling moss control

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by trying 2b organic, Oct 29, 2004.

  1. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 566

    There are many different methods I know of however I want to know what most pros do. I have been using ferrous sulfate wettable powder in a backpack sprayer and going back to rake it up.

    Since it is labour intensive and even involves a dump fee it is not part of my reg programs. I see a competator lists thier basic program as, 3 ferts, lime, moss control and an aeration. (This is a trad Pacific nwest prgm, just lime wont get the moss here) The prmg is the lowest price one at 180 or so. What can you offer for moss control in a case like this. Would you apply the liquid and not rake it up and overseed when it goes black? At that price it may be a granular with extra iron sold as moss control fert.

    I mean a dethatch and cleanup then overseed is great for a mossy lawn but thats a 250 dollar job buy itself, what are people using and doing when its part of your prgm?
     
  2. BCSteel

    BCSteel LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 876

    I spray the F.S., wait a while then power rake it all out. No over seeding, most of my contracts dont have irrigation so its usually wasted anyways. I think that if you were to overseed just over the black moss, you would get very poor rooting from it.
     
  3. Neal Wolbert

    Neal Wolbert LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 407

    Two treatments with Fe Su 20% sprayable @ 2# 1000/sq. ft. in the fall and spring should keep moss within tolerable limits without any need for raking, or at least that is what we find in Wa. High moisture or shade will thin out turf, of course, so overseeding may be necessary under those conditions. If you add a chelating agent to slow oxidation effectiveness goes way up and the grass will benefit even more from the iron. Neal
     
  4. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 566

    So we have to spray the F.S. when the grass growth is slow or the grass will uptake to much and turn black. I wonder, is moss "growing" in the winter when the grass has all but stopped? Not that its a great time to sell lawn care but just curious about if i sprayed in Dec. or Feb. if the moss would still die. One downside is I wouldnt get the happy side effect of greener grass since it will uptake non of the iron. ty :drinkup:

    One more related, BC steel, do you find that when you powerrake you get the moss whether or not u killed it the prev. or does it come up easier and can u do a lighter power rake if its already dead. What im getting to is if there is a point to applying the F.Sulfate for a lawn you know you will be power raking. ty
     
  5. Neal Wolbert

    Neal Wolbert LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 407

    In WA. winter uptake of iron is good if temps. are above freezing and the responses are great. Treated lawns are a brilliant green in no time. At 1 1/2-2# you should have no trouble with blackening (phytotoxicity) as long as it doesn't freeze before rainfall. If you use a chelating agent and it does freeze before rain or watering phytotoxicity or blackening will be minimized if not eliminated. Moss grows during the rainy season in WA unless lawns are frozen. I assume it would be the same where you are. Neal
     
  6. BCSteel

    BCSteel LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 876

    The FS works great in the winter for me too. Like Neal said, as long as it isn't below freezing its going to work very well. When spraying FS I can usually see good results before I am even done the prop, within 10 or 15 min I can usually see the moss starting to go black.

    T2BO, Until the end of last year this was the regime for the lawns in the spring in regards to the FS and power raking. In the 3 or 4 week of March, blanket spray all lawns with FS. Wait about 1 week and start power raking ALL the lawn areas. Everything under contract got sprayed and everything got PR'd, always.

    There were a few small resi. houses that just wanted to be PR'd with no FS but I didn't really like the results from that. The amount of moss that comes up with the sprayed vs. non-sprayed lawns seems to be about the same but the moss quickly comes back in the non-sprayed lawns as billions of prime moss spores/particles are now spread out in the entire lawn just waiting for a little damp weather to start growing again.

    I have one contract that only wanted the FS and no PRing. Early in the year (March, April) you could see lots of the dead black moss in the lawns but by mid May, the lawns were looking just as good as the ones that had been PR'd, minus all the labour involved with the PRing.

    I have been experimenting with different practices this year in regards to the PRing, FS, aerating, mowing etc and have much better lawns for it but thats the way that I had done it for my previous employer for the 5 years I was with him and the way that I had done it for the previous 6 years.
     
  7. trying 2b organic

    trying 2b organic LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 566

    With all of that excellent info I now know how to tackle moss effectively. Im still not sure how to sell it. One way would be to offer free application of moss control with the pre-paid purchace of any lawncare prgm. (think I can call it F.S. organic?) Upon inspection I find that a power-rake would be a good idea, this is extra. The only thing I dont like about it is its sort of the first impression sale, that on the first visit I find that they need to spend more money than the $200. they just gave me for the basic fert and squirt prgm.
    If so than I will move the whole moss control option(s) over to additional services knowing it is an upsell almost everyone will need. Then I can deliver this upsell at a moment which feels right. anyhoo thanks again. :waving:

    I wonder if I cant do lime and F.S. in the same trip. ty
     
  8. Neal Wolbert

    Neal Wolbert LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 407

    I think I'd wait a month or two after Fe Su app. and take a pH reading before liming. The sulfur could tend to lower the pH a bit right after application especially close to the surface. If you have staining problems with the Fe Su, remember oxalic acid in a water solution removes stains on concrete, wood and clothes in a hurry. Neal
     
  9. BCSteel

    BCSteel LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 876

    Wow, really? I'll have to check that out. Does it work on old stains too or just on recent ones?

    I usually do my liming a couple weeks ahead of the moss control.
     
  10. Neal Wolbert

    Neal Wolbert LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 407

    Older stains are more stubborn for sure. May take a little stiff brushing and possibly some hot water to loosen the iron, but it should do the job. If not the first app., then certainly the second. You have to be a little careful because of it's caustic bent so wear your ppe, and it will definately brighten up old concrete pretty fast. I suppose too clean might be a problem too, unless you want to hire out as a concrete cleaning service also... Neal
     

Share This Page