Rain Stress??

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by turfinator, Apr 24, 2002.

  1. turfinator

    turfinator LawnSite Member
    Posts: 78

    Well I'm 2 days into about 3 weeks worth of spring work and what do you know ......its raining. Forecast is for alot of rain over the next week. I find I get pretty stressed out when I cant get out there and work because of bad weather. I do all residential work and I find that everyone wants there yards done yesterday not tomorrow. How do you guys deal with bad weather?
     
  2. KirbysLawn

    KirbysLawn Millenium Member
    Posts: 3,486

    we are having no-rain stress. No rain in 2 weeks and temps have been in the 90's. Many if thefescue and even some Zoysia lawns are showing heat stress already, really sucks.:(
     
  3. Mykster

    Mykster LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 668

    My first day of mowing this season just happened to be while it was coming down in buckets. Made for a miserable first day of the season but, was excited to be out again. Because it rains all the time here, we're out there rain or shine. If it's raining we just go slower.
     
  4. AndyL

    AndyL LawnSite Member
    Posts: 50

    My personal technique for rainy weather... In 2 words... Rain Gear! You get the whole Fisherman look going, gotta have the hat, and the waders, and the bright yellow jacket!

    Call your customers, Find out what the want... Some will want to be done (others will just have to be done, no matter what). Others will be thrilled they don't have to pay for mowing that week!

    Then you scrounge for every half a$$ed respectable blade you can find (often resorting to stealing from other crews mowers (those that are weather wimps)) Get them all Ginsu sharp. Then go cutting (Or should I say bagging?). Budget your blades, I went by blades / k sq ft. figured out my route, and changed on schedule.

    I worked 2 saturdays last year, one week I had weather and lost my helper to the darn spray division on tuesday (no replacement of course...) The other week, was solid hard rain. Both times I only had to work till around noon on the saturday (noise bylaws in effect until 9am)

    The cuts were by no means great, the cleanup was almost impossible. But the lawns got cut, customers were kept reasonably satisfied (you adjust schedule, so the annoyingly picky customers are home when you mow their lawn; so they see you working in the pouring rain, miserable, but working your butt off)

    Use your big mowers as little as possible on the residential yards, too easy to tear up the turf... The Walker used to do great cuts even in the wet, but darnit, it seemed like no matter what you did, you couldn't keep from tearing up the lawns!

    When the weather breaks, sharpen up those blades again, and put them back on the other crew's mowers, and Laugh at them having to work all weekend to catch up!

    Andy
     
  5. turfinator

    turfinator LawnSite Member
    Posts: 78

    Sorry I should have clarified. I dont do any cutting. All of my spring work is clean-ups, power raking and aeration. Unfortunately with even the slightest amount of dampness on the lawn the rakes cant work effectively and forget about cleaning a winters worth of sand/salt off lawns and boulvards. That stuff just becomes glue when wet. Same goes for any kind of leaf/debris vacuming. I used to cut grass a long time ago but any time I tried to cut residential when it was raining my customers would go ballistic. "You cant cut when its raining, you'll destroy the lawn". I tried educating them but it was no use. I've been very lucky over the years since I quit cutting as far as rain goes. In 5 years I could count my rain days on one hand. I think I'll be needing both hands and possibly a few toes this season.
     
  6. turfinator's last post about not mowing when it's raining got me upset.
    If you're going to allow customers to dictate their stupid misconceptions to you, then you are always going to have problems.

    I've mowed wet lawns all week. Some in the pouring rain.
    If the ground's solid enough to walk on, I can mow it without permanent damage.
    And my lawnmower weighs three and a half tons!
    I have a Toro 580-D. The secret is the huge flotation tires at only 11 psi.

    Did you know that a weedeater won't cut grass under water?
    I tried it last week! Things were that bad!

    I've argued the point with plant managers, purchasing agents and company owners (and won the argument) that:

    It's better to mow it wet than to let it get too tall!

    Of course around here the spring, the rains do not stop and the ground dry up until about June!
    It appears as though some LCO are experiencing conditions like I deal with every spring.

    I can tell you from experience, you need to keep the lawn mowed, wet or dry!

    Dave
     
  7. AielLandscaping

    AielLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 302

    i think that if a customer doesn't want you cutting when it's wet, then don't cut. what happens if you don't? it gets tall and you can charge more for the next cut. sounds like a win win to me. i've taken on a lot of customers who ask what happens when it rains, and i tell them if it's wet i reschedule. i've had many people say "oh the last guy i had must have been hard up for money because they'd be out there even when it was raining, and they'd mess up the yard.." I think it's better to give the customer what they want...
     
  8. awm

    awm LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,354

    well send some our way im tired of hearing it may rain an none coming.need to get this d-- little high off our coast.
     
  9. whacked_46

    whacked_46 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 35

    Last week in Calgary it was 21 degrees out side. This week its going down to minus ten and snowing outside. We might be have to take the shovels out tonight......


    When will it end.........:(
     

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