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What size tarp is the ideal size for leaf cleanups?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by dcplace2004, Oct 17, 2005.

  1. dcplace2004

    dcplace2004 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 423

    I saw a 7x7 with drawstring the other day, but it looked too small for major cleanups...some are too big...what are you all using? Do you all use ropes to tie it or some kind of clip--perhaps bungies...just some small questions to throw out there...I know that the size is what works best for the individual, but I am sure that there is an ideal size out there cause one can only lift or drag so much...
  2. BladeRunner1967

    BladeRunner1967 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 202

    I use an 8x10. Have a rope threaded to all the gromets. I pull together and carry it like santa claus and throw in the trailer. Works for me. If it is real heavy for me I tie to my mower and pull it. So far I have not ripped a tarp. So far.:)
  3. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,920

    I use 8X10, sometimes carrying them, sometimes dragging them. In those places where leaves need to be hauled away, I carry them over my shoulder, just grabbing all four corners for a handle. I've never used a rope through the gromets. I have 7X7 tarps for grass clippings, but can use a larger one for leaves. Any larger tarp is difficult to throw over the shoulder - I am 5'9" and the tarp hangs too low in the back (hits the back of my legs/feet). If the leaves are soaking wet and heavy, then the 7X7 will work better.

    When dragging, I will load with a fuller load, then hook the rear two corners together. On each short side, I have a hook, one taken from a broken bungee cord, secured to one gromet. I merely hook it to the other short side corner before dragging so that the load can be greater.

    In some of the dragging cases, I'm sure I could use a larger tarp. But, I've settled on the 8X10, as I often can drag two at a time. When I have long distances to drag, and have my w/b mower handy (w/ BullRider attached), I put two corners of each tarp on the platform, stand on the corners, and then can drag the full tarp(s) to save walking.

    I use the blue tarps, and they have several years of service behind them. I'm amazed at how well they stand up for all the abuse. I do take care NOT to drag across concrete or paved areas.
  4. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    Here's my cheap bustard tip of the day.
    I go to lumber yards and get their old lumber tarps. Most places are glad to be rid of them as they take a lot of space and are expensive to dispose of. They are about 12' x 20' so I cut them to whatever size I want and throw them away when they rip.
  5. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,496

    7x7 and 8x10 are just too small. I have found over the years that 10x12 or just slightly larger are the ideal size. Don't make the mistake of going too big like a 12x16, either. These things just get too heavy too easily. It can be decieving, besause it looks as though you have plenty of room on there, so you wnt to get that last little bit. Unfortunately, that can be the straw that breaks the camel's back.
  6. Darryl G

    Darryl G LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,033

    I use 8 x 10 and 10 x 12 Cordura Nylon or 1000 Denier tarps. The only thing I use poly tarps for is covering my tractor and soil piles. They don't fold well, don't stay put well, and don't hold up well IMO.
  7. turfquip

    turfquip LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 860

    Uhhh well, I guess I'll be the odd man out as I use a 12 X 16.

    Its the only way to move any decent volume. For you guys that have velkies, take the end two corners of your fully loaded 12 X 16 tarp, wrap them together, stick your legs through, jump on your velkie and drag them anywhere you want them using your leg bones. Been doing it for years and no problems yet :)
  8. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Ideal size is one that is folded neatly and stays in my shop 24/7. No way in hell would I ever take a job on that would require a tarp to get rid of leaves. Talk about taking a slow boat to China...
  9. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,164

    Whatever is in the shed, usually a 8*10 i think, so i can get it into the trailer full!
  10. dlandscaping

    dlandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    from mass
    Posts: 835

    I use 10-12 wide by 16 or 18' long.One person gets front, and the other brings up the rear. As long as the leaves arent soaked, it pulls fine.

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