Fertilizer and Weed Control Applications

BrandonWJ

LawnSite Member
Location
Fargo ND
Hello. I am wondering how others apply their fertilizer and weed control applications. Right now I am only set up to apply granular fertilizer with a spreader and liquid weed control applications with a backpack sprayer. I am wondering if I should apply the two at different times and charge the customer for a fertilizer application and a chemical application separately? The big companies in my area have spray truck set ups that cost thousands and make it so they can apply herbicide and liquid fertilizer in one application, and the customer just gets charged for the one application. In my case, I don't have an elaborate spray truck and would need to do two applications for the herbicide and fertilizer, and am not sure how the customer would take getting charged for each separately. Does anyone else do this?
 

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
Customers would seldom accept a separate charge if your competitors were doing it in one step.
However you have the right idea, in that there is no need to apply weed control in every application--not legal.

Most new operations do their application rounds in two steps. Spread fertilizer and spray with a backpack or skid sprayer. Broadcast weed control is only applied twice per year. The label limit. So you could potentially omit the fertilizer when doing the weed control sprays. I am not sure customers would accept this idea of omitting the fertilizer in Round 3 and 5.
You would have to be a super-salesman to convince Ms Customer you were a better deal.
So apply more slow release?
Include insecticide?
Automatic grub control with your early summer ap?
 
OP
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BrandonWJ

LawnSite Member
Location
Fargo ND
Thank you RigglePLC for your reply, I really appreciate it. So to be clear, most new operations do two steps at one customer stop, that being spread the fertilizer and spray weeds with a backpack sprayer?

What do you mean by applying more slow release, insecticide, and automatic grub control? Thanks again.
 

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
I am thinking you need to be sure the customer receives more value for their money. More slow-release nitrogen--as compared to competition.
You have to deliver a better product to compete with the heavy advertising of the big companies.
Better, more careful, detail-oriented weed control sprays--maybe with surfactant. Maybe with automatic crabgrass post-emergent.
Free nutsedge control as needed?
Maybe include spot spray with all fertilizer spreader applications.
For example, on my spreader, I rigged up a plastic basket to carry my half-gallon hand-held spot-sprayer. Weed control was applied either broadcast or spot spray during every application.
And of course, answer your phone calls with your smart phone even while spraying a customer lawn. Fast, friendly service--gains customer loyalty--and--plenty of referrals.
Include a money-back guarantee. You will find yourself working more carefully.

Yes--most new companies start out with two-step applications during rounds 2 and 5. Spread fertilizer--then spray weeds--or variations similar to that idea. It is your job to be sure your results are better. Greener grass, bigger smile with less weeds and crabgrass.
 
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BrandonWJ

LawnSite Member
Location
Fargo ND
I am thinking you need to be sure the customer receives more value for their money. More slow-release nitrogen--as compared to competition.
You have to deliver a better product to compete with the heavy advertising of the big companies.
Better, more careful, detail-oriented weed control sprays--maybe with surfactant. Maybe with automatic crabgrass post-emergent.
Free nutsedge control as needed?
Maybe include spot spray with all fertilizer spreader applications.
For example, on my spreader, I rigged up a plastic basket to carry my half-gallon hand-held spot-sprayer. Weed control was applied either broadcast or spot spray during every application.
And of course, answer your phone calls with your smart phone even while spraying a customer lawn. Fast, friendly service--gains customer loyalty--and--plenty of referrals.
Include a money-back guarantee. You will find yourself working more carefully.

Yes--most new companies start out with two-step applications during rounds 2 and 5. Spread fertilizer--then spray weeds--or variations similar to that idea. It is your job to be sure your results are better. Greener grass, bigger smile with less weeds and crabgrass.

Thank you for the information. Where do new companies get their supplies as in the granular fertilizer and the chemical? Is it best if your small to just get it from big box stores like menards or are there better options out there?
 

Crazy 4 grass

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Minnesota
Thank you for the information. Where do new companies get their supplies as in the granular fertilizer and the chemical? Is it best if your small to just get it from big box stores like menards or are there better options out there?
Menards sells nothing but garbage.

Look at reinders. Is there a location in your area?.

Or liquids can be ordered off -do my own pest control.com
 

Shindaiwa_operator

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Paxton, NE
Yeah, any commercial fertilizer/chemical company selling into the ornamental and turf industry will be WAY better than anything you can get at Menards etc. I’ve heard of people spreading Menards “fertilizer” and getting a nice healthy crop of dandelions out of the deal! Avoid these locations if you want to stay in business.
 

andersman02

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Snowy MN
Company's near me mostly charge per visit, not per service. How ever I know a couple companies who sell 6-7 SERVICES over 5 visits, do yes there customer is getting charged 2 times at some points. It works for them.

You should more so be looking at the total cost for your program vs someone else's. If they do 6 at $400, and your only doing 5, your pricing should still be close to there's, assuming your doing similar amounts of fert and wc
 

kemco

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Memphis TN
BWI smokes the prices you will pay on doyourown by 10 to 20% or more in some cases. But you may not have one near you. Must set up a company account as they don't sell to the public. Same with Ewing Irrigation supplies. Ours carries a decent choice of chems and ferts. A little pricier than BWI. I found site one to be about in the same price range as Ewing.
 

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