Fertilization Programs How Do I Start One?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Darin, Jun 3, 2000.

  1. Darin

    Darin LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    I would like any input on how to begin a fertilization program. What kind of license are needed?
  2. Nilsson Associates

    Nilsson Associates LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    Darin,<br>If you want to do it right (is there any other way?) then take this advice as gospel.<p>1. You'll need a license so take the instruction with your cooperative extension service look them up on the web for your state. Enroll ASAP or even quicker.<p>2. You'll need continued education so join the PLCAA at website www.plcaa.org now Darin don't skip this step! <p>3. Focus (real hard) your attention on selling and marketing. Everything else will fall into place if you do steps 1 and 2 above. If you don't do steps above, you'll be all &quot;screwed up&quot; is what it is. Why? because if you try to operate without the knowledge or license your competition will report you and you'll be out of bizz in a New York minute. Nothing is faster than a New York minute. <p>Remember who gave you this good advice, 5 years from now when you're making $75,000 plus the easy way.<p>Phil Nilsson<br>Nilsson Associates<br>$$$Green Industry Consultants$$$
  3. ant

    ant LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,494

    thanks steve<br>i e-mailed my fax # to you
  4. mattingly

    mattingly LawnSite Member
    Messages: 136

    Darin,<br>Truth be told only one good fertilization in the fall is needed to promote healthy turf. I know that doesn't make the money that all of these 5-6 step programs do but, they aren't necessarily the best thing for the lawns. Here is what I do to ensure healthy turf, be honest with my clients, and make a little money on the side. Offer a late Sept. fert., a mid to late Nov. fert.(winter application), and if necessary for greenup for the grass and yourself a spring (march)--&gt; this is best applied with a pre emergent to save you time and double the money(weed and feed). Here is how you make some money back. Encourage your clients by telling them you are keeping their turf healthy and in the best shape possible by using the 2-3 applications. Since they are used to paying for 5-6 applications they should instead look to spend that money on an additional post emergent treatment in late summer early fall. This late application knocks down more weeds (i.e. fewer weed seeds floating around to germinate next spring. This will do more for the lawn, allowing grass to fill in the areas where the weeds were. In time you have a nice thick lawn that is healthy and green as well as weed free. The will then gain a reputation and draw even more clients. Thus paying back the money lost on not providing 5-6 applications and you do it the honest way.<p>----------<br>Integrated Landscape Solutions<br>Lexington, KY
  5. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    I want to agree and disagree with Mattingly. I agree that you should promote late fall fertilization as well as a winterizer if your climate allows it, and the spring preemergent is necessary. <br>However I think a lawn fertilization program has to be adapted to every lawn on an individual basis. Some lawns are bagged and removed which reduces the N for the site. Some lawns have problems with pests - ants, grubs , chinch bugs, the list goes on. Some lawns arent lawns but wild flower weed beds that are gonna take lots of work to reestablish. What I'm saying is that you have to educate youself and know the enemy, and know the weapon that you will use to get him. Sometimes there isn't an enemy and you work to maintain a nice lawn.<br>I also believe that post emergent treatments are necessary but the manner of application is different for each lawn. I would almost always use a spot treatment spraying of pests rather than a broadcast application of a pesticide. But before this I would rather build a healthy lawn through proper applications of N-P-K in a balanced program. <p>Lots to learn about this stuff. Anyone can sling fertilizer but not everyone can tell you why and how it works. You are taking the first step by educating yourself. This is just my opinion. Good Luck.
  6. OP

    Darin LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    Thanks, you all are a lot of help.
  7. mattingly

    mattingly LawnSite Member
    Messages: 136

    I agree with mow ed. I just didn't have time to go into all the additional details. Lesco pushes for you to have one program and stick with that program for every customer. I don't believe you are being fair to your customers with that approach. Much like mow ed says, you need to tailor the program to the lawn.<p>----------<br>Integrated Landscape Solutions<br>Lexington, KY

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