Pine straw estimate

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by LawnRunner, Feb 13, 2007.

  1. LawnRunner

    LawnRunner LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    I have a customer that has 7000 sq. ft. of pine straw. Most of the pine straw jobs I have done have only been in the 1000 sq. ft. range. Would like to hear from you guys on how much you would charge. Thanks
     
  2. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    A bale should cover 50 square foot.... so you are looking at around 140 bales. And you being in NC, I would bet yall would get $3-4 labor per bale plus the cost of the bale.
     
  3. nmurph

    nmurph LawnSite Senior Member
    from ga
    Posts: 668

    whoa there!!!!!!!!! let me help you a little on this one.........a bale of straw will cover 80-100sf depending on the size of the bale, what is it covering (re-straw...new cover......etc.......) what type of straw.....a more likely price for spreading in your area is $1-2/bale depending on what type of landscaping you are placing it around (around trees, under shrubs, in flower beds, etc....). if you hump it you can lay 100-150 bales/day.
     
  4. LawnRunner

    LawnRunner LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    Thanks guys I appreciate the replys. I had quoted her $900.00 and she thought that was too high.
     
  5. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407

    $1 a bale? You would make the same profit watching TV all day. Pine straw is one of the least profitable services. $3 per bale labor is about what it takes to make a profit, and up where is he is the cost of living is more than GA, so he might need to charge more than that.

    And I still think a bale covers 50 sq ft. That is the figure I use and it works out. I got that number from my distributor who sells and spreads for a living for the past 10 years.
     
  6. nlminc

    nlminc LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GA
    Posts: 1,671

    I agree, $1.00? That's low. We charge 2.75 - 3.00 over the cost of the bale. I can lay down 25 bales an hour in decent conditions. If you have a lot of shrubs it goes slower. Go with 40 to 50 sq. ft. per bale.
     
  7. dave k

    dave k LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,178

    I agree with lawnworks that a bale covers 50 sq. feet at 2 to 3 inches thick per Atlanta Pine Straw, where I buy my straw, those are the bales that have the orange string, the ones that are machine baled and have the wire around them probably do a larger sq. footage, I normally charge 6 bucks delivered and installed.
     
  8. nmurph

    nmurph LawnSite Senior Member
    from ga
    Posts: 668

    if your bales only cover 40-50sf, you need to find a different supplier. if you can get $2.75/bale for spreading, go for it. i'm just telling you what my 10yrs experience in the straw business has been. prices vary by area, the coverage a bale provides should be fairly consistant. are you buying home heapo junk????? they buy the cheapest/nastiest/lowest quality they can find. i buy lots of things from hd/lowboys, just not straw or lawn mowers.
     
  9. Rons Rightway Lawncare

    Rons Rightway Lawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,163

    10 years ago I was getting a easy 7 bucks a bale installed. Then in 1999 I moved to Florida and when I came back in 2001 and restarted my business here, I found the area had been flooded with specialty companies that only do pinestraw and these companies sell for 3 to 4 dollars a bail delievered and 1 to 2 dollars a bail for installation. On average you will pay them 5 to 5.70$ per bail installed.


    Then when I started giving pinestraw estimates at 7 bucks a bail, all my customers told me no thanks, that they have gotten quotes from these pinestraw services for less. After loosing job after job, I decided to call the pinestraw guys myself and arrange to have them do my pinestraw jobs for me.

    They give me a discounted price on the straw, and I upcharge the customer about 50 cents a bail from what they normally would have paid - I charge them 6 bucks a bail - So in the end I don't get my hands dirty and I make 25-50 bucks per job just for making a few phone calls.
     
  10. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Posts: 5,407


    So you are saying buy bigger bales and then charge $1-2 a bale to spread it. Sounds like you are screwing yourself.
     

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