How would you tackle this?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by wildstarblazer, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,046

    Think a Billy Goat vac would be a good tool? Mower with bagger?
    Old fashion rake and bucket?

    It's worse than the picture makes it look. It's at least 6 inches deep with leaves, pine straw and cones.

  2. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    what is it you are trying to do?
  3. 93Chevy

    93Chevy LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 38,379

    Might be a lost cause...till/power rake and re-seed.
  4. dig419

    dig419 LawnSite Member
    from maine
    Messages: 48

    i had a property with a 4 inch layer of pine needles and cut grass about 8 years ago. i have a walker mower so i just added the dethatcher and raised the deck to 4 inches and started to make a slow pass - after just the first pass i was good to go and all went quickly. this was a good money maker as another lawn care co. refused to tackle this project as to much labor time. i don't rake when i can use a dethatcher. frankly i was a little worried at first, but this is the business i'm in.
  5. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,046

    The customer didn't ask me to do anything with it but I thought I could convince her to clean it up if I could use a faster method than raking.

    I don't get the dethatcher method. What does that do? Break it up into smaller sections?
  6. FLCthes4:11-12

    FLCthes4:11-12 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 283

    why not just pick up the cones and let it be a natural area. After you got it cleaned up it would take a ton of lime just to get started. But if i had to clean it up I would use a landscape rake for my tractor or skid steer
  7. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    I find that coniferous tree cones can damage my blades as much as rocks.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Especially along borders and wood piles, it is much better to leave a milch cover down. Yes it would look better by cleaning up those cones and sticks.

    I've had clients that wanted things always "cleaned up" no matter how dusty and weedy and shady the area was. When I convinced them to let those area be covered with clean mulch they we pleased with the results.

    If you do clean it up just take off the top layer. There is likely partially digested organic material that will certainly enhance the soil whether worked in or not.
    In other words you should remove no more than half of the needles and let the rest remain as soil building material.

    BTW, those pine needles do not generate acid soils. It's an old wives tale. Aecetic Acid decomposes just like everything else and has no lasting effect of pH.
  9. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,046

    I tractor would be ideal. Wish I had one, lol. I think it should be left natural and pick up some cones too but one could make good money over here with this kind of work. A nice small tractor or one of those Toro dingo ride on things would be great. time to start savin some money.
  10. wildstarblazer

    wildstarblazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,046

    Sweet gum tree balls and seed pods from Magnolias are even worse. No way around them suckers but to pick em up.

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