Fert & Squirt only?

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Shades of Green LService, Nov 7, 2006.

  1. Shades of Green LService

    Shades of Green LService LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,011

    Do you guys only do Fert and squirt or do you have another part of your Biz like Mowing, Landscaping, Irrigation. Just curious, I my self do fert/ Maintenance, But woud Love to one day phase out Mowing all to gether.
  2. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    I currently do mowing and maintenance. I plan on growing and right now I am looking to go into Irrigation, Fert & Squirt as well as landscaping and hardscaping. I have even thought about landscape lighting. Regardless, I will probably keep mowing as part of my business forever. At least that is the plan for now.
  3. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,986

    I do both, but I started w/ just fert and squirt. I picked up mowing too, for a few yrs, and realized I was actually making less money. So I dumped mowing until I was big enough to run 2 trucks, 1 full time spraying, 1 full time mowing. Unfortunately, I actually like going w/ the mowing crew, it's very relaxing, and I can just listen to the Ipod all day and ride the sulkies around. I tend to focus less than I should on spraying because of this. Here's why i shouldn't;
    A 2 man mowing crew averages about $700/day, gross, & that's a long day.
    A 2 man spraying crew averages about $1,600/day, gross, and they get off about 4-5pm.
    Best 2 man mowing day EVER $936
    Best 2 man spraying day EVER $3,595
    I realize that there is more material cost in fert/spraying-but not that much.
  4. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969

    Shades of Green

    This subject has come up several times over the years I have been on LS.

    The general consensus is Mowing is the Necessary Low Margin Leader to develop a market for up sell of other Green industry services.

    Competition with big corporate advertising bucks like TrueBrown are hard to compete with. Mowing gives you that same exposure to the customer on a more local scale. Marketing your self as a one stop shopping for all green industry services allows you to compete against the big boys.

    Can you drop mowing?? Sure but have a good customer base and be sure to have a good network of other LCO to help sell your work.
  5. J Hisch

    J Hisch LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 952

    We do both maintenance and mowing. I have found that the market is changing where if you spray for someone they want you mowing and if you mow they want you spraying. "Turn key" is becoming the new industry standard.
  6. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969

    J Hisch

    You call it Turn Key I call it One Stop Shopping But the Idea is all the same.

    The Down side of Full Service is the amount of Education or Knowledge needed to do excellent work. This includes the knowledge of GOOD employee. Good Employee is the key word here, because anyone who has had an employee has also been a baby sitter.

    The Up Side is, your business is in a Class by itself. However in defence of Shades of Green, a stand alone Fert & Squirt business can be less stressful and can provide a nice income even as a one man band. BTW Been there and done them both. I prefer less income and stress of the one man band. However I got to the one man band via the full service.
  7. Shades of Green LService

    Shades of Green LService LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,011

    Nice Posts, I think i'll always do Mowing.A lot of my good spray and fert accounts are also Mow accounts. So if i drop one i'll probably lose both.And the people i Mow i do leaves in the fall which is also a desent money maker. I guess My Ideal set up is Mowing 2.5 days and Apps all the Rest. Thanks for the feed Back.
  8. ThreeWide

    ThreeWide LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,116

    Fert and squirt provides a great deal of freedom with scheduling, as you only need to get your apps into certain time windows. Exact days do not matter.

    With mowing, there is little room for error on scheduling due to turf growth rates and customer demands. This is why I personally found it difficult to offer both services as a one man show. I always called mowing the "ball and chain" as you are expected to be there every week regardless of the circumstances.

    Offering weekly maintenance would be great if you have the volume to support a dedicated crew. I chose to focus on the application business due to the relative ease of scheduling and overall profit margin.
  9. Shades of Green LService

    Shades of Green LService LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,011

    Turf Unlimited
    I went to your site and checked out your pics, those lawns look Impecable, Nice work. SGLS
  10. deltascapes

    deltascapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    at the time I am spraying and mowing but only mow if we spray but will spray without mowing. would like to faze out mowing but just can't with some of our large accounts want only one company so will do little mowing

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