need help on flower beds

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by BZB_Helpers, Jun 5, 2005.

  1. BZB_Helpers

    BZB_Helpers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    i got a referal to do a flower bed cleanup and mulch application job. i calculated 4550 sq ft or 14 cubic yards @1". these beds have weeds growing extensively in them with flowers. the owner was also talking about how the flowers dont grow well in the beds, so i dug a hole and found 1" of topsoil on top of hard clay. im thinking of rototilling 1-2" to remove the weeds, then apply topsoil and till deeper, then mulch.
    black mulch: $20.25 a yard
    premium topsoil: $21.00 a yard
    where do you guys rent bed edgers and how much?
    any suggestions on what to do to the beds? cost estimates?
    i have 9 pictures, just need hosting
  2. Coffeecraver

    Coffeecraver LawnSite Senior Member
    from VA.
    Messages: 793

    1) Take a soil sample to see if the pH needs adjustment

    2) Check for drainage,dig a hole about 10 inches deep and fill it with water
    the next day fill it with water again see how long it remains,it should not exceed 8 hours,if drainage is poor plan to plant in raised beds.

    3) the next step is to dig the bed.Add 4-6 inches of organic matter to heavy clay soil to improve soil texture.

    4) Dig to a depth of 12-18 inches add recomended fertilizer,lime or what ever the soil sample calls for.Till again and smooth.

    5) Be sure the plants selected for the site will grow in the pH that the bed is.
    also be sure that they are suited for the enviroment around them.

    If you do not know the plant material then you should
    Leave this job alone or Ask the client to assist you remove the desired plants.

  3. TScapes

    TScapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 453

    I would recommend condensing the flower beds (Annuals only) into 2-3 strategically located beds instead of scattered through out. Most people have annual seasonal color beds located at or near mailboxes, entrances or along walkways. Anywhere there is a focal point or where you can grab someone's eye and and ultimately their attention. Once you decide on these areas, you will need to add amendments to the soil and then till them in. We typically use soil conditioner, mushroom compost or manure, and sprinkle some slow release fertilizer over the amendments. It depends on the bed size, but for a 6x4 bed, you will use 1 compost/manure and 2 s.c. Then till it in using a small tiller (Mantis or Honda). Make sure that you till it into the existing soil (6 inches or more), thus mixing everything together and creating a loose planting area. If you do this with every seasonal color change out (Spring and Fall) you should have a great medium for the annuals to thrive in. And, after a year or two, you may be able to cease adding or atleast minimize the amendments you apply.
    Good Luck! By the way, we charge around $4.75 per square foot for this.
  4. AdamCByrd

    AdamCByrd LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Over 4500 square feet? That is a lot of bed area. I'm not saying I haven't seen it before in some expensive properties, but most normal residences around my place are between 1500 and 3000 square feet. Anyway, you said only 14 yards of mulch? You'd be spreading it AWFUL thin. I calculate between 90 and 120 square feet per yard depending on whether or not there's any old mulch there. I don't have a calculator readily available, but I think you'll need more than 14 yards.

    I recommend hiring a dump truck to deliver the mulch if you don't have one yourself. They can deliver more in one trip than you can with 3-4 double axle trailer loads. My favorite hauler charges $55/hr. I pass that price on to the customer.

    I think a lot of people charge between $40-50/yd of mulch. This includes the cost of mulch, plus delivery, plus labor.

    I'm an amateur I admit, but a quick learner.

  5. BZB_Helpers

    BZB_Helpers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    there will be 2" of mulch put down and 2-3" of compost tilled into the flower beds 6" deep. should i install a weed barrier?
  6. BZB_Helpers

    BZB_Helpers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    well i just finished estimating and heres what i got.
    28yd (2")mulch -$700 mulch, $1680 install @$60 a yd
    42yd (3")compost -$900 compost, $3360 install @$80 a yd
    flower bed tilling and ground removal - $700 @$50 per 324sqft
    bed edger rental- $100
    any suggestions?
  7. Gibs

    Gibs LawnSite Member
    from canada
    Messages: 70

    how much do you guys get a yard of mulch for... i have to pay sometimes 51$
  8. BZB_Helpers

    BZB_Helpers LawnSite Member
    Messages: 131

    mulch: $20.25 + tax=$21.87 a yd
    compost: $17.95 + tax=$19.39 a yd

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