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Newbie help!!!!!!!!!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by lawnkid14, Oct 10, 2009.

  1. lawnkid14

    lawnkid14 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 232

    Please help fix htis problem. I have a gravely 12.5/36" gear driven mower and the tires no matter how fast im going when the grass is wet it tears all the grass up and just leaves a trail of mud. Is this normal when the grass is wet or what please help:confused::confused::confused::confused:
  2. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    I was rutting with a Lawn Boy 21 one day last week and had to stop. Some days you just can't mow period. Sometimes this lasts for days on end and it has been awful lately. What I do is go to the uncut lawn that drains best first, and if I can't do that one, I know I can't do any others, no use burning truck fuel.

    Wet, soggy turf tears easier in early spring and fall. I can't speak for your conditions up there, but when the sun is low and the day is short, things just don't get dried out easily.

    It also depends on how well the rainwater percolates down thru the soil. If there is a lot of clay content, percolation is slow and the upper layer of sod stays very wet. Every lawn is different.

    My best guess is it is just too wet where you are.
  3. Ruben Rocha

    Ruben Rocha LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 577

    Agreed with the above post.
    If you start to see black streaks in the turf. The soil is saturated.
    All you will do is damage the turf or worse sink in the soil if you break the surface tension.
    Better service to the customer is don't cut unless you want to re-sod.
    And yes some mowers are more prone to rutting than others. It all depends on the conditions.
    I would suggest that you do a walk on the property if it is that wet before starting.

    Once you learn your equipment better you may find that going slower with very minor turns may be better sometimes.
    But it just takes one time to sink in a lawn and have to dig your mower out and you will never do it again. Believe me..
  4. LouisianaLawnboy

    LouisianaLawnboy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,199

    Hey I have a 36 Gravely. Ease off of the controls is how I've always done it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    If I rut with a 21 I stop immediately. I have a tamper to re-form the marks, and it heals quickly since the marks are small. I don't do it often but you all know the pressure of being behind and the urgency of trying to get something done.

    Yup, I've only stuck a Z once. No fun at all.
  6. Ruben Rocha

    Ruben Rocha LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 577

    Yep, I think the small postage stamp lots are the worst for wet conditions.
    No room to maneuver and the 6 to 8 ft between the houses leaves no room for drainage.
    Sometimes the front and back is okay to cut. But you can't get past the side of the yard to get to the back because it is like muck.
    Most new homes have mostly clay soil so even the a/c condensate drain floods the ground on the side of the yard so bad that you make 4" deep foot prints just to walk back there.
  7. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    Here the a/c has to drain into the sewage system by code. The connection is indoors usually, often just a rubber hose duct taped into a "T" and riser on a 2" PVC drain. When the hose or 2" PVC eventually plugs up the homeowner thinks the roof is leaking on the carpet, but they need a plumber, not a roofer.

    But the sod is thrown on red fill dirt, clay, and mortar chips. Little if any prep.

    To the homebuyer, grass is grass, and if if has some kind of grass green side up, they will buy. It may not live long however.

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Make sure the tire PSI is right...tires low on pressure are flatter and 'grab' the turf more, tear it up more.
  9. Kennedy Landscaping

    Kennedy Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,597

    Yep, we've had a substantial amount of rain here the last week or so. I mowed Friday all day, couldn't mow the other days of the week. Its rained every day this week except yesterday. Kills the schedule.

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