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60% Landscape Planting Success Rate

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Smallaxe, Jul 17, 2012.

  1. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    A fellow scaper friend of mine runs a crew and came right out and stated that he expects only about 60% of a landscape planting to make it the first year...

    I was really surprised when he told me that, but then I keep hearing those kind of numbers over and over again... So I'm curious as to why this has been accepted...

    What percentage is the general success rate for your business?? and what would you attribute it too???
  2. knox gsl

    knox gsl LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,166

    Alot more than that-----water.
  3. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,737

    If only 60% of my landscapes survived the 1st year, I would be out of business. Thts why I push maintenance on new installs.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    How close should we be to 100%?

    Is it worth it to charge enough to cover 2 maintenance visits, up front??
  5. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    60 per cent is rediculously low in my experience.

    If the plants are treated poorly and handled rough, dropped from the truck or exposed before planting, that will effect them. Also, I see alot of installations where shrubs and trees are not planted to horticultural and arboricultural industry standards.

    Usually, they are planted too deep and there are air pockets in the root ball.

    I believe if the crew is properly trained to respect the plants and their root balls, and properly trained to do more than just plug the thing in the ground, then you'll get a higher success rate.

    Take what your acquaintance says with a grain of salt and strive to do better than him.
  6. 60% is pathetic. IMO, if you use the right plants, install them properly, and they are watered properly, you should lose maybe 1-3%. I have yet to have a plant die that I installed.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. Grasssales2001

    Grasssales2001 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 111

    What type of stock does he plant? B&B, boxed, containerized?

    40% loss seems excessive.
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    He plants everything from perennials to 20' trees... actually his crew does... and I agree,,, it does seem excessive... he does plantings even in this kind of weather, but now he has a better maintenance person, so maybe it has changed for him...
    The reason I bring it up is becuz we've heard others saying the same thing...
  9. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    I almost lost some stuff because the little dish I put around the base of shrubs was never used and the h.o. would just set a sprinkler nearby to water them with... :(
    So I grabbed the hose and filled those valleys and they should now be fine...

    As stated, air pockets are probably the biggest mistake people do when planting... I still see crews use their foot to press the root balls into dry soil then soak only the very surface, before the water begins to runoff...
  10. Grasssales2001

    Grasssales2001 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 111

    I see a lot of stuff planted too deeply. Not watered in properly and mulch mounded up against the trunk 4-6 inches.

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