Dumping Grass?

John Deere

LawnSite Member
For those of you out there that have to bag most of your lawns like us is there a system that you use that works better than going to the dump 3 times a day and scooping the grass off your trailer with a scoop shovel and rake? I have looked into a dump trailer , but they are very expensive and it would be difficult to back my Z-track's into them without a ramp gate. I guess I would just like all of your ideas and ways you get rid of grass efficiently. Thanks!!!


LawnSite Bronze Member
South Bend, IN
Consider a dump insert for your pickup. A couple of them are at<br>http://www.truckcraft.net/page2.htm<br>http://www.highwayequipment.com/lawn.html<p>There are a number of other mfrs also.<p>----------<br>Jim<br>South Bend, IN

Eric ELM

Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
Chicago, IL USA
John Deere, I got all my customers converted to not picking up by proving to them, that I could make their lawns look as good if not better by putting the clippings back in the lawn. Tell them the benifits of leaving the clippings on the turf. I have convinced a 97 year old and a 83 year old that my way will make their lawns look as good and guys of that age pretty much have their minds made up, which is hard to get them to change over. It's a lot less work and faster. I wrote an article on clippings that you might be interested in that can be found on my website. Since you seem to be a JD lover, check out my 10 year old JD 430 diesel. It's still making me money. :)<p>----------<br>&lt;a href=&quot;http://pages.prodigy.net/eric.erickson/index.html&quot;&gt;Eric@ELM&lt;/a&gt;<br>


LawnSite Silver Member
dirty jersey
we use dump inserts in <br>our pick-ups<br>one e-z dump and one truck craft. the truch craft seems to be the best for us. (well made)


LawnSite Member
Well as a starter in this business...and i bagged almost everything last year(which WILL change this year).I used a big tarp and just pulled it right out of the back of my truck.


Moderator, Friend, Angel
South East
I am with Eric on this. In the 9 years I been in this business I have never bagged grass. Cutting at the correct height will leave a miniscule amount of clippings. These clippings are good organic fertilizer. Convincing some customers of this part isn't easy sometimes. Why take up space in landfills with grass clippings? If you have piles of grass clippings in the truck where do you put your equipment? Are people going to pay you to haul this stuff off? HOw are you going to get compensated for the time it takes to scoop it off the truck? When the heat here gets to 95+ I wouldn't want to be scooping dusty grass of a truck. Its okay If you are well compensated for the extra work. What hurts everyone else with this is if you are doing it as an extra for free. The everyone else epcts the same service. When they are barely paying you enough for cutting the grass. This doesn't answer your question. I just know I don't have the time to do it and make money. Just wondering how some of you do.


LawnSite Gold Member
Here's an original idea. Put it in garbage bags and leave it by the curb like I do. Or just dump it by the curb, our city will pick it up. If i had to haul it somewhere I would be getting more than $35.00! We put all our clippings and shrub, limbs and whatever else by the curb. Our city brings a truck and trailer by with a knuckle boom with jaws that scoop down and pick it up. The cost is included in our garbage and water fee.<p>Homer


LawnSite Fanatic
Beaverton, OR
No offense, but most of the above posts are pretty unprofessional or at least don't apply to many regions in the country. I would never consider leaving bags at a clients house. But then we market ourselves as an upscale professional company. So I guess it depends on what image you want to leave with. <p>As for mulching (or leaving clippings on the lawn) that too is a unprofessional. It's also not possible to make it look decent unless conditions are optimal. And if you live in a wet climate at all then it's not even practical 8 months out of the year. <p>Dumping mechanisms for trucks are a decent option but I've never seen them to be cost effective. Of course that depends on how often you are dumping. If you are going to the dump 3 times a day, then maybe it would be worth it. I dunno. More on that below.<p>We bag all our grass. It's just part of standard practice for 99% of the companies in our area. We also mow every week for most of the year. So what we are bagging is only 1 week's growth. We put the clippings in the bed of the truck (standard 8' long bed truck). If it gets to high I have the guys get up and jump on it to pack it down. We don't have rails on the truck and we rarely, if ever, need to dump more than once, at the end of the day. And we mow 20 houses a day on average. <p>I pay two guys about $9 an hour to take the truck to the yard debris recycling center at the end of every day. It takes them about 15 minutes (guess I am fortunate because the yard debris recycling plant is less than a mile away) to go dump the grass and get back. In essense, I pay about $5 in labor to do this every day. If I had a truck with a dump mechanism on it I bet it would take them only 10 minutes to do it. This would save me $1 or so a day in labor. But do I really want to spend a thousand or more on a dump mechanism so that I can save $1 or so a day???? No thanks. <p>We use rakes too. If you want to go faster, they sell &quot;pull forks&quot; which are basically long pitch forks with a 90° angle on the fork part. Kinda like a long-tined rake. They make things go a little faster. But around here they're $50 or more. And as much as my guys loose rakes, I don't want to invest $50 and see it get lost. So we stick with rakes. <p>One temporary option is yard debris recycling cans. These cans are provided by most trash companies (for an additional monthly charge) and they sit outside, like a big garbage can. Most houses in my area have them. I used to tell people that we didn't haul away grass and that they'd have to get a YD can if they didn't already have one. I'd tell them the money they save on our monthly price would make it worth it. Then every week we would mow and place the grass in the YD cans. After a while I realized that this was a little un professional. No big pro companies would ever think of this. So I changed to hauling it away for everyone. But it worked for the time being until I had big enough trucks and trailers to do it the right way.<p>Another option is to get rails put up on the sides of your truck. You can hold 2-3 times as much clippings with rails. I haven't needed to do this yet but if it came down to it, I'd rather do that than get a dumping mechanism or go to the dump 2-3 times a day. <p>Hope some of these ideas help. <p>----------<br>Jim Lewis - Lewis Landscape Services<br>http://www.lewislandscape.com

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