Leaf Removal Strategies

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by extracash, Dec 2, 2002.

  1. extracash

    extracash LawnSite Member
    from Central
    Messages: 17

    Hopefully, this is not a duplicate post as I received an error message after submitting the first post.

    Anyway, next season, we are considering expanding our small business to include more leaf removal. At present, we blow the leaves from the flowers beds and landscaping areas into the lawn and them bag the leaves with our 33" walk behind.

    This seems to work well, but I am curious what approach others use. It should be noted that we will only pursue residential lawns with a size of one half acre or less.

    What should we consider? Should we continue to do as we are? Should we use a shredder/mulcher? Thoughts???

  2. columbiaplower

    columbiaplower LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 462

    Our approch is this- Blow leaves out of beds with backpack blower, Then use walk behind blower to clear large grassy areas and open gardens. Pile leaves in an area easily accessable to truck. Load leaves. Cut lawn. Depending on how much you want to expand, a truck loader may or may not be a reasonable option to pursue.
  3. extracash

    extracash LawnSite Member
    from Central
    Messages: 17

    What options are there to the leaf loader? I'm confident that a truck version will be too much. What else should we consider?
  4. columbiaplower

    columbiaplower LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 462

    Well other then a truck loader you have a few options. 1) BAG THE LEAVES:cry: alot of work and a real pain 2) Put the leaves onto a large tarp and dump them in your truck/trailer(i would put another tarp where your dumping the leaves so you can easily unload them at your dump-site). These are the two i can think of. Will you be using a truck or a trailer? The nice thing about a truck loader is it reduses the material (leaves) do drasticly, alllowing you to transport more debris in one load.
  5. KLMlawn

    KLMlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 443

    So far ... from what I read ... you are doing fine with blowing out the beds and picking up with the mower, but what do you do with it after you pick it up???
    You should definately invest in a truckloader, it will get those leaves into the truck a hell of a lot easier and in less time than tarps or barrels and with much less strain on your back.
    Now, how will you get them out?
    Loadhandler is an inexpensive thought ... about $200.
    Rakes & Blower ... lots of time and hard work.
    Dump Body insert ... most expensive, but well worth it -$2000+

    A new truckloader should be about $1300 and up new, used, you could probably find a decent one for say $500-700.

    Minimum investment - $700
    Best investment - $ 4000

    You get what you pay for ... isn't that what we always say when we want to justify our prices ...;)
  6. Lawn Specialties

    Lawn Specialties LawnSite Member
    Messages: 207

    Blow the beds into the yard, mulch them with the mower and go over it with bagger. Mulching them first reduces bulk.This method works ok but it is labor intensive if you have a place where the leaves are super heavy.The one benefit is that it can be done with equipment you already have.
  7. AztlanLC

    AztlanLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,051

    We also clean out gutters, I usually charge between 35 and 50 it only take you couple of minutes with your back pack blower, but high risk, we don't take on steep roofs.
  8. David Shaw

    David Shaw LawnSite Member
    Messages: 153

    I've been doing some leaf cleanup this fall also. As soon as I can afford it I'm getting a leafloader. The other day I hauled 4 pickuploads of leves off 1 property. Doing the tarp drag and lifting it into the truck by myself. Lealoader would have reduced down to 2 loads I think, someone with more experiene correct me if wrong. And save me some backaches the next day.
  9. extracash

    extracash LawnSite Member
    from Central
    Messages: 17

    At present, we bag everything and leave it at the location for their local trash carriers to remove.

    Who manufactures the truck loaders?
  10. extracash

    extracash LawnSite Member
    from Central
    Messages: 17

    When you mulch the leaves and then catch them on the second pass, are you able to clean the yard as well as you could if you did not mulch the yard first? How much does the mulching reduce the amount leaves to bag? 50%? 75%?

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