Hydroseeding Help Please!!

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Venturewest, May 1, 2007.

  1. Venturewest

    Venturewest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 516

    I have done searches for just about everything I can think of related to hydromulching and hydroseeding. I have found alot of useful information, and I thank all of you for taking the time to post it.

    I have a Turbo Turf jet agitated 500 gallon machine with a 13hp honda engine and 3x3 pump. I am just learning the business and have done about 4 acres so far.

    So here is my question or problem. I can't seem to keep my hydromulch from washing out. I am using Jetspray 80/20 pellatized mulch with the poly fibers. Turbo Turf recommends 120 lbs in a 500 gallon tank. I am using 160 lbs, using 4 lbs of tackifier. I did 10,000 sq feet yesterday in 2 loads on about a 5 to 1 slope. We got about .75" of rain in several hours. Never a downpour, and alot of my work washed away. What am I doing wrong?? I feel like I don't have a product that I can guarantee to a client. Any suggestions? Should I try more mulch? Will my machine handle it? Is it typical that rain will wash it away?? Would maybe bales of paper mulch be better?

    I really appreciate any help anyone can give. I am really hoping Muddstopper pitches in on this one.
  2. Venturewest

    Venturewest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 516

    Hope I got the name right. Also is Ray with Turbo Turf still on Lawnsite?
  3. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    I have a 500 gal. machine also im not sure about your mulch but i use 70-30 wood blend. Also profile tacking agent 3 about a 3lb. bag per tank. It should of held. make sure it is on heavy so you cant hardly see thru the soil. The mulch application is very important.
  4. Venturewest

    Venturewest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 516

    Thanks Mike, I am using about 4 lbs profile tacking agent. Is your machine jet agitated? How many lbs of mulch are you using per tank load? I am exceeding all Turbo Turf's recommended rates and it still looks so thin on the ground after it dries and especially after it rains. How many sq ft are you spraying with one tank load? Thanks alot
  5. Rtom45

    Rtom45 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 456

    You may also want to pay attention to your surface preparation. If you're spraying over a compacted surface with no preparation, rain will wash your hydroseed. If you've done some raking and have some texture to your topsoil, the hydroseed should stay in place during a normal rain.
  6. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    I am using 200 lb. of mulch per tank. As far as coverage it depends on soil if it is loamy real dry and powdery it doesent go far. Now as far as washing it might not be as bad as it seems. i seeded a place 1 week ago at a develpment in the entrance way about 3/4 mile long 30' wide. It was good field dirt just dozed off by them ground was a little wet we seeded and even cut back to 150 lb. of mulch to keep price down and it rained 2 days later i drove back and thought the seed and mulch washed. Today i was there to finish and i have good germination. It might not be as bad as it seems. I have a mechanical machine.
  7. Venturewest

    Venturewest LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 516

    I think you may have hit the nail on the head. I am thinking that it just looks like the seed has washed away. I won't know for sure for another weak or so. I am going to try straight bales of paper mulch also. For the jet agitated machines it might be the way to go. I guess experimenting is the best way to learn. I wish I had a mechanically agitated machine. It would be nice to have the option to apply a heavy wood mulch.
  8. Mike33

    Mike33 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,649

    Wait before you throw paper mulch. You might get another opinion here but i have been told that paper mulch isnt good it will leave to much of a crust and hard to get germination thru. If any thing i might mix 2 bales of 70-30 blend in a whole tank with about 15 lb. of seed. This way you can get some more mulch and a little seed with out hurting you price wise and the coverage will go pretty far. let me know how it works for you.
  9. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,341

    Venture, instead of posting another longwinded post, I will just point you to this thread http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=185848 where I had already commented on your coverage problem. Hopefull some of the other things I said can be of help also.

    Even with wood mulchs, I have had jobs that looked like they have washed out after a heavy rain. Usually this isnt the case, the rain washed out the dye in the mulch and it looks like everything is gone, but its still there. Now if you are seeing gullies and riffs running thru the lawn, you have a problem. I prefer the Pam tackifiers myself, but find the recommened rates (3lb peracre) a little low. I would automaticly double the rate if I thought there is even a remote possibility the job could get washed away. I have used recommended rates on flat ground and have seen mulch flow down in rills after the application and a lite rain, and thats with wood mulch. Pams up to 10lb per acre seem to work the best for me.
  10. turfquip

    turfquip LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 860

    Generally, you can't run 70/30 in a jet machine. I say generally, but in fact I have done it a few times.

    It is problematic in a couple of ways. First, forget about it unless you completely pulverize the bale BEFORE it goes into the machine. This is labor intensive as 70/30 is packed pretty tight. My experience is with enviroblend.

    Next, the wood fibres swell over time and can cause your pump/impellor tolerances to get out of spec. This can happen with residual mulch that remains in the machine after (less than) thorough daily cleaning.

    You don't know this has happened until the next time you use the machine and it won't pump properly.

    Be cautious about using 70/30 with a jet machine. Best not to do it.

    One other thing, on a 500 gallon unit 13 HP is not enough power...period. The minimum on a 500 should be an 18 HP twin with a 4 X 4. Again, that is a minimum.

    Most of all, consider that these are one man's opinions. I do have knowledge in this area. The manufacturers will be quick to refute these statements.

    Take care

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