New to landsacpe quoting, any help appreciated

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by PushingupDaisies, Jun 4, 2008.

  1. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    I have one of my lawn accounts that has asked me to some mild landscaping to get rid of her ugly corner. I'm not all that experienced in landscape quoting and could use some help.

    Here is what she is looking for:

    She wants the groundcover pulled out and a new kind put in

    The top leveled for a benck or hammock

    NO WEEDS EVER (lol...thought I'd throw this in)


    She bought some castle stone type bricks and wants a small roughly 2' wall where the trench shows. It is on a hill and slanted, but wants it horizontally level (if that makes sense). She doesn't want the expense of actually putting mortar on and bricklaying, just set on top of each other. The wall is approx 13' long.

    Here is what I've come up with so far in how to do this:

    Plan to rip the old ground cover out, till it lightly, level the top and plant creeping jenny in there.

    Since the wall won't be cemented in with mortar, i plan to slope the dirt back and away from the stones so they don't bear any weight and hopefully won't move too much over the years. I figure that I will have to dig the trench a little deeper and level it out, put sand down and lay the first layer and level as I go, then put the second and so on and check from time to time on levelness.

    One of my fave quotes:

    "When asked if you can do a job, tell 'em 'Certainly I can!' Then get busy and find out how to do it."-Theodore Roosevelt

    So thats what I am posting for.

    Please give me input on anything you can. i.e.: Method for laying the wall, what plants to use (SLC, UT), pricing, hours it will take.

    I need to get her a bid this week and I am curious about what you think a labor estimate should be, but more interested in the labor hours you think it will take.

    Thanks in advance for any and all help.



  2. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Any comments/suggestions/help?
  3. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Need to have a quote in tomorrow. I was thinking it is probably 8 man hours and plants are probably 100, so I was thinking about $420 or so. Am i off my rocker one way or another?
  4. fastpitcher

    fastpitcher LawnSite Member
    from PA
    Messages: 91

    way too cheap. not bad if you weren't gonna install the wall. basically, you are installing a garden wall. you don't need mortar necessarilly but you still need to build a solid level base with stone and sand. You can't prevent the wall from bearing weight, but if built correctly if should have no problem bearing the weight of such a small load. I don't know what kind of stones you are using, but a good general rule is that the height should not be more than 2.5 times the depth of the block. Any higher, and you need to start using geogrid or mortar depending what type of block you are using.
  5. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Ok, so WAY too cheap, they are supplying the bricks (what is scattered in the pics). I was realizing that I was bidding with only a 1 man crew, where there would be two. From what I understand in Utah, the average hourly landscape rate is $35 per man hour. Should I be up in the $700 range?
  6. jrmyj

    jrmyj LawnSite Member
    Messages: 52

    Im no expert, but I would think one guy your looking at 1 hour for weed clean up and disposal, 3 hours to set the wall, 1 hour to prep the ground, 2 hours planting and give yourself a 3 hour cushion. The going rate in the midwest is 40 so at least 400 for the labor. time wise I think your where you need to be. I would charge 30% for handling fee for any materials and I would bet your looking at more than 100 between dirt, plantings and tiller. Plus I would charge a disposal fee for any dirt or weeds you remove unless they dispose of it. I dont know if this helps but this is how I usally bid.
  7. cgll1135

    cgll1135 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 89

    stay closer to the $700.00 area.
  8. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    I bid $745. We'll see what they answer. Done sales for a while but not in this industry. I know there are good and bad ways to present and discuss an estimate. Anyone have experience with what worked or didn't work with the estimates or follow-up calls?
  9. JNyz

    JNyz LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,087

    Sounds about right. If you get it you can update your equipment.
  10. PushingupDaisies

    PushingupDaisies LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Thanks for all your help. Called back last night and got the job! pretty stoked. This will be my first landscaping job. Finally get to start building my portfolio.

    One question:

    It is set far in the back corner of the backyard. I will be tilling and some very minor,shallow digging. Do I need to call Blue stakes or a company like it to come out and check for utility lines?

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