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Renovation Job #1

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by DeepGreenLawn, Jul 15, 2008.

  1. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    Here are some pics of a job where the customer wants some trees removed and the wooded area cleaned up. She wants it leveled off and clean, basically bring in some dirt, make it smooth, put a few plants out, NATURAL ofcourse, and then put pine straw down. Simple enough, think I might bring in a dingy(?) for the job to see how I like it. They are only about $50 per day.





  2. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    a few more



  3. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    OK, going from left to right and then down to the next line...

    Pic 1: Shows a "peninsula" coming out on the far left of the area. She wants to take out the two pines up front due to them leaning toward her house and they don't look too good from what I can tell. I am not doing this, she is getting another company to do the trees. She said she wanted to take out the hardwood on the end and I cringed, I talked her out of it and told her that it would look really good if she left it.

    Pic 2: Shows the back part of the peninsula, there is a "valley" at the point where I would like to put some dirt, not a whole lot, to help level it off, just have to worry about the run off, I guess I could throw a drain pipe down to help funnel the water through and still get the desired look.

    Pic 3 and on: shows different angles of the area. She wants it cleaned up and leveled off. There are a lot of hidden stumps and all which is why I figured to bring in some dirt rather than have to work with those things. She is currently working on removing a lot of brush along her "fence line" just some chicken wire she put up to help keep the weeds at bay, I stepped back there to take some better pics and found a small natural spring. I think, if we can go back that far, it would be great to incorporate, if nothing else clean it up because this place is rampid with mosquitoes. It would look nice to though I thought.

    When she takes out some of the pines it will let in some more light in the area allowing me to place more native plants in different areas. It should be fun.

    The area is roughly 2000 sq ft total. Any idea of how much topsoil I would need? I figured 5-10 yards. I haven't done something like this in a while so my numbers are a little off. There isn't much leveling just a little, the biggest parts to take dirt are those valleys, I don't want to add too much especially now that Tree made her remark about too much dirt on the roots.

    There are some hostas you can see in the second pic in the back corner that are out of place but doing really well so I thought I might transplant those to make a better impact. There are also a few hurting azaleas that I was standing right infront of when I took that same picture that I thought I would throw out in the woods also. Can't hurt and the are they are in is also pretty awkward.
    Thanks for the help.
  4. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    Deep...Great job on the pictures...nice and clear...What trees are you cutting? The big ones?...and If so are you taking the stumps and roots out?


    PS........................... eDIT i posted the same time you did
  5. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    I am pushing her to the big pines, she was wanting to take out the smaller hardwoods and I was basically begging her to leave them. She just wanted it cleared out some more. we finally decided on 5 pines and 2 hardwoods, I hated to lose any but one was basically sticking out in her yard and the other she wouldn't budge on. Hopefully whoever takes them out will agree. I will go back again on thursday and make sure to tag the ones we want removed. I doubt we will take the stumps and roots, she just wants the area to look good, she doesn't want to be out there in it. A few well placed good looking plants with good color and she is happy.
  6. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    the tree up front in the last picture is actually bamboo, it is the only one there, I don't know why it isn't growing like crazy. The lady is korean so she likes it and I think it is kind of fun, something different. It's a good size and in good shape. Just something that catches your eye. She said her neighbor gave it to her, he had a forest of it. I think she makes sure to take any new sprigs away to keep it clean, otherwise she is extremely lucky. There are a few more vines I have to get out of there, otherwise we get back to what we started with, a lot of trash everywhere. This is after two rounds of spraying to knock back the overgrowth. I was happy with what I saw with this visit. The weeds were out of the woods but had taken off in the fescue grass. We got A LOT of rain so I think the dormant seeds got a watering and took off. The lawn is sparse back there. They are organic though so hopefully they will have a full turf next spring.
  7. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    I have never seen a Bamboo tree In all my life...same as the grass you guys grow over there...never seen that stuff...Anyway...looks like a fun job you picked up there...congrats...how easy Is It to get materials back there?...did you give here a price or just Time and material?
    If you rent the Dingo....what attachments are you using on that job?
    Will you use any triple mix? or just topsoil?...how wide Is the entrance to that area?...Is there any poision Ivy back there?

  8. treegal1

    treegal1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,911

    those pines need to go, thats a given. the other trees are ok, you did good with that idea. use a bunch of that COBB post to level with, try to mix it a little with the dingo, lat some seeds and natives and your there!

    very impressed with the way you layed this out, nice job!
  9. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    I appreciate the compliments.

    It will be simple to get stuff back there as there are no fences in the way and it is an older neighborhood so they actually have decent lawns.

    I tried to give her an idea of what it would cost, I told her it could go from $1000 to $3000, estimated guess with materials and time. The only thing I was unsure of was the cost of the topsoil. She seemed to be fine. She would hesitate, as she does with every time I price a job, I think she likes to build suspense, and then says, "well it has to be done" and goes for it. I told her I would email her a price once I had a chance.

    When I get the Dingo I figured all I would need was the bucket to help carry the soil back and then I could also use it to level it out and then rake in the rest. Throw in the proper plants, throw down the pinestraw and be done.

    I thought of using straight topsoil and then mix in compost in the areas that I wanted to do my plantings, but if tree says to use compost I think I could do that too.

    I figured the pines needed to go, that is what you always see on the ground in storms and when ever I have come to taking out trees in the past everyone says to keep the hardwoods.

    I was afraid of mixing the compost with the existing soil due to all the tree roots around, I didn't want to tear anything up. Figured I would just go over the top. But I will take your advice and do a little not too much.

    OH YEAH, bamboo trees I think are cool, can't hurt the things it doesn't seem, and they spread like mad too. I like them if you can keep them under control.
  10. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    am I right about the amount of soil/compost? I thought about 5-10 yards, which side should I go toward?

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