Raised beds...

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Lawn-Scapes, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    I'm going to be creating some beds that will require topsoil to raise them up from 12-24 inches. I am estimating needing 20 yards. I need advice on estimating the approximate time it will take to move and install this amount of dirt. The dirt will be dumped close (10-15 feet) to the beds or may even be dumped on one of the locations. I also need help calculating a price... does the 2 - 2 1/2 x the cost of the product apply to something like this? I will have a compact tractor with front end loader to work with.

    I'd also like to know if anyone has established time estimates on planting material. For example how long should it take to plant 1 gallon container, 2 gallon, 3 gallon, etc.... in soft, medium or hard earth. This client has had 20 ornamental grasses and five 5' evergreen/pine trees delivered and wants a price to plant them all. The ground will be medium to hard.

    Any feedback would be most appreciated!
     
  2. D Felix

    D Felix LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,898

    There are more accurate ways of estimating than a multiplier like that. You need to figure out how long it will take, then take that times your hourly rate....

    As for planting times, do a search- I posted some quite a while back. Sorry, I don't remember the name of the thread... Do a search on the topsoil question, you'll probably find various answers as to how long it would take...

    Depending on how good you are with the tractor, if it was dumped on the spot where you wanted it, you could have it spread easily within an hour or two if the tractor was big enough....


    Dan
     
  3. GreenMonster

    GreenMonster LawnSite Silver Member
    from NH
    Posts: 2,702

    I agree with Dan. Figure out how long it should take, then apply your hourly rate. I personally don't like the 1.5x 2.5x for figuring pricing.

    A one gallon container in med-heavy shouldn't be a big time diff from eay digging. That's not a big hole. I would say 5 minutes for each one gallon plant, which includes complete cycle time to move from one hole to the next.

    The 5' evergreens are probably 3-5 gallon? Shouldn't be more than 10 minutes each, maybe 15 if the digging is indeed hard like you said.

    I also agree that an hour or so should be sufficient for moving the 20 yards. Well, with a tractor (less agile than skid steer) I might lean towards the 2 hours. I would guess you have somewhere around a half yard bucket, so that's 40 trips to the pile. How long would you estimate each cycle time for topsoil pile to bed, back to pile? don't forget the time needed to grade and smooth it off with the bucket.

    hth. good luck.
     
  4. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    Here's the finished product. Homeowners chose plants and location. In the first bed.. the 3 Crepe Myrtles already existed as single tree rings. The other two beds.. nothing existed. All of this is an attempt to hide the satellite dish from the street. :)
     
  5. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    .......................
     
  6. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    A few more...... second bed.
     
  7. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    ........................
     
  8. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    Third bed..................
     
  9. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    ..........................
     
  10. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,810

    Two more.............
     

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