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mowing guy with question for fert guys

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by kalyeah, Apr 7, 2006.

  1. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Ok, I have a customer who called me today and left a message. I had cut his grass earlier in the day. He has been a customer for two years now. Has a nice lawn, but it grows faster than any lawn I have(too much nitrogen?, applied at wrong time?). It grows faster than even the nicest lawns I cut. I'm not positive but I think he's still applying his own fert/weed control. I don't know what he's using. Anyways, he asked me to skip him next week because he just did an application. I've always practiced the 1/3 rule when cutting grass if at all possible. I'm going to call him tomorrow and try to talk him out of skipping next week. I think he's under the impression that skipping a week will benfit his grass because of the recent application. I'm thinking that it's the total opposite. That taking that much off in one cutting is not good for the grass. I'm needing some feedback to present him with before I call him tomorrow. I've already talked to my fert guy(the guy that does my house and that I refer to others). I'm going to call the local extension office tomorrow also. Thanks in advance.
  2. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Oh yeah, I forgot. Fescue lawn.
  3. ThreeWide

    ThreeWide LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,116

    You are absolutely correct.

    Fescue is growing at its highest rate right now, even without additional Nitrogen. Weekly mowing is needed. Otherwise you will need to raise the height to avoid violating the 1/3 rule.
  4. thomsoutdoor

    thomsoutdoor LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,444

    Your are correct. I have always practice the 1/3 rule myself. For those who like to dump a lot of fertilzer down I would do one of 3 things, offer to cut it twice in one week, give a high price to clean it up, or charge for double or trible cutting. I got tired of spending to much time on someones property. Time is money.
  5. kalyeah

    kalyeah LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Well, here's what went down. I showed up and knocked on the door. His wife answered and said he wasn't home but he wanted to skip the week. I told her she'd have to find someone else. I couldn't cut it the next week if it had been skipped. She gets him on the phone and he says go ahead and cut it. He's still saying his fert guy said to wait 2 weeks. I told him he needs to find a new fert guy. I've talked to a lot of different guys while out working and they all agreed that was ridiculous. Anyways, he's one of these guys who thinks he has a perfect lawn. It's nice but it would be better if he'd just hire a good fert guy and let me cut it. He's always applying something (at who knows what rate). Dethatching when he should be aerating. Etc Etc......Begs me to bag it all the time. Thanks he should have zero thatch. I would have already gotten rid of him if I didn't have 4 other houses bunched right there with him. He said"let me ask you this. How does your lawn look compared to mine?" He acted like he didn't believe me when I told him the same but a whole lot greener. Then I had to bust his bubble and tell him he doesn't even make top 10 lawns on my list of customers. I cut some really nice lawns. Anyways, thanks guys for helping me confirm my thoughts.
  6. Norm Al

    Norm Al LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,227

    the mowing it 2x's a week is the best advice,,,,when the turf gets to tall it shades itself out and causes thinning,,,,NOT thickening.

    if the guy is worried about you hauling his fert away with the clippings,,,,,remind him if you dont bag his lawn ALL the fert is getting put back into his yard.
  7. lilmarvin4064

    lilmarvin4064 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 757

    Let him know his fert guy doesn’t know what he is talking about. 1/3rd rule? Yes!! You’d be much better off cutting it more often, than less.
    There is no granular material, or liquid, that I know of that requires you to wait 2 weeks to mow; ridiculous. You only need to wait 2 days after weed control. Tell him, or his guy to lay off the fert, AND return clippings. He wouldn’t need to fert as much if he would let you recycle some nutrients + organic matter. Studies show that clippings do not add to thatch with fescue! And you are right aerating is predominantly more worthwhile than dethatching. ΒΌ inch of thatch is just fine.

    His lawn’s probably gonna have brown patch by the end of May/June.

    It looks good now, but he'll wonder what happend to his lawn by August.

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