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Aeration, overseed & fertilize

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by LCME, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. LCME

    LCME LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 430

    I know I'm asking a lot of questions. But, I did a search on this subject and I guess I was not able to find the answers I was looking for. So, I'm going to ask anyway. Thanks for reading and patiences.

    I would like to offer aeration, over-seed and fertilize to customers this fall. I plan to rent a power core aerator and slit seeder. And, use a Scott's spreader to apply starter fert. I have never use a slit seeder before. But, I have rented the P/Core Aerator in the past. I may add a worker to help with labor. Please give comments, advise, tips, etc. And, how you would calculate costs to do the services above separately and/or package deal. By man hour, per SQ FT, etc. Do you mark-up the materials and how much. I'm either going to use Scott's starter fert. or order from Lesco on line. Is start fert. like 12-12-12 or is it 13-13-13 ?. Thanks in advance, LCME
  2. eshreve1234

    eshreve1234 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 184

    Here is how I do it.

    Excel sheet with formulas. I do mine all by acres since I don't have any little properties. So you input the acreage, and excel references my prices and coverages for seed, fert, and time and gives me several numbers. It tells me the price just to over-seed, over-seed and fert, just aerate, and the whole thing. Then it applies 3 levels of mark-ups based on the percentage I gage the customer is willing to pay, never less than 12% and never more than 35%. Its real simple to set up, and will give you good results.
  3. MMLawn

    MMLawn LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,569

    alot of folks charge anywhere from 2-3 times what the price would be for cutting the lawn for aeration and .xx cents per sq ft for overseeding. Also you had better get on it as the season is now for about the next 4 weeks in most areas.
  4. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    What he said is true here, he's mostlikely using optimizarion through linear programming with theory of constraints. That's math speak for here's how I make profits. Beg this guy, and I mean beg him to explain in detail how this works and you will be far and away ahead of others. They teach this in college but only a little bit. I've had exposure to it in a few classes for theory but it was summmer school so they showed us how in only a two dimensional form because we would need computers for anything more. Teacher did a quick demo just to show us how it worked through power point projector. VERY fast and efficeint.
  5. walker-talker

    walker-talker LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 4,771

    Generally I charge $10 per K sq ft to aerate with a minumum of $60. I figure how much seed to apply and charge double what I pay for it and include fert. with that. It's a good deal for them because I pay half for what the seed would cost the client to purchase from a nursery.
  6. sildoc

    sildoc LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,925

    I have a 25 stop fee plus 10 per 1000sqft of turf. as for fert and seed I charge 2-3x cost. I usually use 13-13-13 for starter fert in fall but have used scotts. I dont think the extra cost for scotts is worth the difference unless a customer specifically states they want a scotts product. Then I charge the difference and a little more.
  7. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Messages: 10,178

    power seed/aerate/fert $80 per 1000 sq ft. if it's an exsisting lawn, i don't use starter, i'll use like a 25-10-10. if it's not an exsisting lawn, i'll use starter. don't base anything on the price of a grass cut, it's apples to oranges.
  8. Westbrooklawn

    Westbrooklawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 426

    Short mow, seed, aerate, and fertilize in that order. If it's a regular contract customer I don't charge any extra for the short mowing, because I am there to mow anyway, and after seeding I will be skipping a mowing the following week anyway.....the extra effort to mow short (and bag if necessary) is offset by skipping a mowing the following week.

    If it isn't a regular customer I charge about about 50% more than a regular mowing would be just for the short cutting, i.e. if It is a $30 lawn I would probably charge $45 to cut it short in preparation for seeding. If the customer wants to do that themselves that is fine with me, but they have to do the mowing right before I come to seed (within a day).

    Once that is done I charge $35/1000 ft. which includes seed, aerate, and starter fert. I also have a $120 minimum.
  9. By the Yard

    By the Yard LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    I'll carry this over to this thread. So do any of you guys use overseeding machines(Ryan/Bluebird) for your overseeding?

  10. socty

    socty LawnSite Member
    Messages: 109

    Why not aerate first, then overseed? If you do a good job aerating, is it really necessary to "short mow". Lots of holes in the ground for that seed to fall into, right? that's how I usually do it. Avoids shocking the grass, too.

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