price for installing stones

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by bayfish, Jun 28, 2003.

  1. bayfish

    bayfish LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    I was asked to give an estimate on installing 1/2 " size red stone in 300 sq ft of flower beds. The beds need no preparation.

    1. What should the coverage be, 1" or 2" etc...
    2. 1 ton covers 100 sq. ft. at 1" depth and is $35.00 per ton picked up.
    3. Would have to move stone from my trailer about 50 ft. to bed area in wheelbarrow.
    4. 2" coverage would mean 2 trips to stone yard because trailer capacity is #10,000.
    5. Stone yard would charge $40.00 per ton delivered. $35.00 per ton if I pick up.

    How much would you charge for this job?
  2. A couple of things don't seem quite right.

    You say the beds need no preparation. Why? Do they already have landscape fabric?

    I'd guess stone weighs 3100# per cubic yard. That would make a ton cover 216 sq ft / ton @ 1" deep. (but I've been wrong before)

    Gross trailer weight is 10,000# Need to subtract trailer weight from the load you order.

    I'd recommend 2" deep or greater. Better coverage. More stable etc.

    I put down 27 ton of stone one year. I could haul 2 loads of 6-8,000# per day, but most went right off of the trailer into the beds.

    If I was going to wheelbarow that much stone I'd rent one of those powered hopper buggys.
    Either that or get it delivered and rent a dingo to move it to the beds.

    I know I've said nothing about price. Labor in your area is higher than here. I'd guess a couple of days.

    Also check your tire weight rating and tire pressure before getting loaded.

    Maybe this'll help you a little.

  3. nelbuts

    nelbuts LawnSite Bronze Member
    from SW, FL
    Posts: 1,053

    First, I would have it delivered for the extra five bucks. Doubt if you could by the fuel for yourself to go and get it.

    Looks like you are looking at about 7.5 yards here. I usually get between $150 to $200 per yard for stone. Depending on the type of stone and it's cost.
  4. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,491

    My advice when having to wheelbarrow stone, is to wait until the summer is as hot and humid as it can get and then do the job. If this sounds sarcastic it is. After nearly killing myself with a new install several years back I vowed never to take on another stone job again. Hire/sub it out and don't sweat it.
  5. bayfish

    bayfish LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    Thanks for the input, all good information. I'll weigh the options, check on rental of a dingo and let you know what I come up with. I'm glad I asked. I had no concept of working with stone. Thanks
  6. vardener

    vardener LawnSite Member
    from MD 7
    Posts: 49

    Are they really that set on the stone?

    I find that most of my clients are pretty easily swayed by my advice. I hope it's that they value my professional opinion, and not that they are afraid I'll beat them up if they don't follow my advice. ;)

    It's too darn hot and humid to be hauling stone in MD.

    Sell them some mulch.
  7. bayfish

    bayfish LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    The price I quoted them changed their mind. $1400.00. I factored in a "heat variance". They may use someone else, but I'm off the hook. Your right, it's HOT!! High 90's for two weeks now with 95% humidity. Not a good time to move stone.
  8. vardener

    vardener LawnSite Member
    from MD 7
    Posts: 49

    Well, not to mention that the weather channel and other assorted weather sources have been cursing us with intermittent thunder showers for the past few months. How's a guy supposed to get any work done around here?

    I recommend revisiting them and offering them a different solution to the stones. Tell them that the stone look is unnatural and the heat generated from the stones can damage their plants. Recommend that they have at least 3" of cypress mulch installed . tell them that it is pest resistant, doesn't float away, holds it's blonde color well, and will cost much less than the stone, but won't be as permenant of a solution. HD sells it for about $3 a bag. I charge $5 a bag to install it. I make way over $50 an hour doing this. It takes me about a half hour to dump 10 bags and spread.

    If they just don't wnat to hear that landscaping can cost over $1,000... well, you don't want them for a customer anyway.

    Where in MD are you?

    If you are close to DC, you should check out the trade show at American University on the 24th of July. There will be alot to learn, I'm sure. Do a search for it on this site. that's how I found out about it.

  9. bayfish

    bayfish LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    The mulch is a good alternative, they're supposed to let me know. I'm in Salisbury, covering Wicomico and Worcester counties. Where are you located?
  10. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    We just installed 15 tons of red stone and do a fair amount of stone installs.
    1. DO get it delivered for the small del charge
    2. DO put down commercial grade landscape fabric...this is a must otherwise the stone will sink into the soil over time
    3. DO rent a Dingo or small machine with a small bucket
    4. We like stone jobs...hard work ? yes...VERY profitable ? you bet.

    Unless I'm missing something you'll only need around 3 tons/yards. We average $125 to $150 per ton installed plus the cost of the fabric...about $50 for this sized job and you'll have lots left over. Make sure you cut big enough holes around any plants to let in air and water. Yes the fabric is supposed to allow air and water in but I dont trust it .

    Re #3 above I changed my mind.... you can't cost justify renting a machine for such a small job. Putting down 3 tons should not cause anyone to get heat stroke unless they were out drinking the night at $1400 you wont have to worry about getting the did good in scaring them off with that price

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