Bag or Mulch

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lee Homan, Aug 4, 2000.

  1. Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163

    I just sold one of my John Deere tractors that had a bagger and was debating whether I should spend $700.00 for a new power flow bagger for my 325 or $150.00 for a mulch kit. I have 5 customers that I bag for that make up about $500.00 per month during mowing season. I have talked 2 of them into mulching and the others I'm waiting to talk to. I would eventually like to get away from bagging. I hate to spend the money on a new bagger while I anticipate buying commercial equip. next year. The other problem is trying mulch damp or high grass. With the bagger it is alot easier to bag damp grass. All of the bagging I do is on bermuda which is easier to bag when damp than mulch. Any comments would be appreciated.

    P.S. The reason I sold the mower with the bagger was because it just didn't have the power to do the job anymore.
  2. Guido

    Guido LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,087

    I'd talk to your customers that you haven't yet first. Try to sell them on mulching instead of bagging. If that works, theres no need for a bagger and you can only take on jobs that can be mulched after that. Hope it works out!

  3. OP
    Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163


    Thanks for the advice.

    I would be interested in knowing how many people bag, what type turf they bag and why they think it is important.
  4. accuratelawn

    accuratelawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 922

    About bagging. I have a few that we bag the entire yard. Another couple that we bag around the pool.
    Most of this grass is tall fescue. We charge extra ($8) to bag. A couple of the properties allow us to dump there.
    I have thaught about getting rid of the bagged lawns, but have to decided to push them to allow me to apply fert. I would have more control on how much and when the N is applied. This should reduce the clippings.
  5. sunrise

    sunrise Banned
    Messages: 246

    we only bag 1 lawn every other time unless we get alot of rain and grass gets high and then we will bag maybe 29-30 lawn then. high visible areas.
  6. excel25

    excel25 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 393

    Havent bagged in 3 years. took off mulch kit,s and use dbl. blades with 1 being a gator. doing fescue and bermuda.
    put mulch kits on in fall for leaves. all customers are very happy!
  7. OP
    Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163


    Do you think just the one blade setup with the gator blades would work ok. I'm not real crazy about the 2 blade per spindle setup.......feel like it would be to hard on engine.

    In response to sunrise's comment, it is easier to bag damp or high grass instead of mulching especially if you start early in the morning before the grass dries. It may take a little longer but it is better than waiting around until 11:00a.m. to start mowing.
  8. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    What size engine do you have and what size deck. I ran double blades on a 20 HP Kohler Magnum and a 60" deck for 2,500 hours before I sold it 2 years ago. It is still running and still has double blades on it. My older DC I have now is about to turn 3,000 hours and has had double blades on all them hours and it has a 22 HP with a 60" deck. Just giving you an idea of how it affects engines. None that I can see.
  9. OP
    Lee Homan

    Lee Homan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 163


    I have a 17 hp Kaw. single cylinder with 340 hrs.
    While were talking about power, at what point in an engines life do you think power starts to decrease?


    I mulch small bermuda lawns with a Honda Hrb216 and does a real good job as long as you take 1/2" or less off a a time, which down here in AL the grass doesn't grow that fast because of lack of rain.
  10. little green guy

    little green guy LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 955

    I don't mulch or bag. I discharge all the grass. I run the two blades setup and it works great(thanks to eric) The only problem with discharging is you have to be more careful around beds and stuff.

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