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Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by moonarrow, Jan 13, 2000.

  1. CGS

    CGS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 44

    Here is a website that can answer most questions here. Check out http://www.neteze.com/dB/why.htm (Dirt Cheap Organics) FAQ's. I'm planning to go this route also. $5.95 per 25lbs/2,000 sq.ft. sounds cheap, read their &quot;products&quot; page for other Application rates and stuff. <p>They also carry Natural Pest Control products. Still you have to wear a mask.<br>
  2. Yard

    Yard LawnSite Member
    Messages: 129

    Naturalawn is right about Milogranite and a lot of other the &quot;organic&quot; or &quot;organic based&quot; products. Many contain sewer sludge which contains heavy metals, and although it's treated, can also contain live pathogens. There are companies around that promote organic or organic based lawn care that are able to do it cheaper because they are using these products,and use synthetic prsticides along with them. Most customers are uninformed and don't realize that there is a big difference between this and a purely 100% organic approach. <p>When using a purely organic lawn care program you will not need to use any synthetic fertilizers, insecticides, etc. You will not get the instant green-up of chemicals right away, but when using a quality product you will see a difference and once established organic turf will look better and stay green longer with less irrigation. One of the most important things to do is a soil test. Find out what the soil needs. Check the PH. It's very imporant to get it within the proper range, 6 1/2- 7, so the soil can process the nutrients. There are safe natural solutions to a lot of problems. For example, if you live in an area that Japanese Beetle Grubs are a problem you can apply Milky Spore Disease Powder. It takes a while to establish itself and may seem expensive initially, but it lasts 10-15+ years, and it is safe for you and the enviroment. It will not kill bees, birds, earthworms etc. like many synthetic insecticides. Once a purely organic program is in place for a while you will see that the turf becomes a lot healthier and thicker. There will be a lot less problems than when a synthetic program was used.It will actually crowd out most of the weeds. It may be hard to convince some customers that the initial higher cost is worth it, but compared over 3 to 5 years the costs become much more comparable. You will not need to do a yearly insecticide treatment like before, fugicide treatments become a thing of the past, the turf crowds out the weeds on it's own. There are golf courses using 100% organic programs sucessfully that have cut their costs way down compared to a synthetic program. So it can be done if done right.<p><br>It might not be as good to your financial bottom line at first. But the real bottom line is it's a heck of a lot better for everyones health and for our environment.
  3. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    Yard,<p>What insecticides (general use, not RUP) should we stay away from so not to kill bees, birds and earthworms?<p>(Actually, I might not mind taking out a bees nest on some yards.) :)<br>
  4. Nilsson Associates

    Nilsson Associates LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    In some markets public perception is swinging toward using &quot;natural products&quot; customers are willing to give organics a<br>&quot;try&quot;. As many of you know, I represent an Organic Franchise, as agent. The franchise was started in New England and already gaining momentum .. going nationwide .. and interest in this is strong. The franchise offers a low start up cost, competitive pricing, 100% support systems, a customer starting base, takes care of scheduling, billing, accounts receivable, collections ... just about every support feature so you can spend your time in the field making money ... not doing a lot of book work. To receive info about this .. email me at<br>Nilsson.Assoc@Snet.Net<p>Phil Nilsson<br>Nilsson Associates, Consultants<br>P.S. Visit my web site, <br>http://www.turfquip.com/nilsson.html look under business opportunities, review some features about this organic franchise bizz opp.
  5. CLM1

    CLM1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 90

    Phil, I have recieved the material on the organic franchise, but 16% straight off the top? Seems alittle much to me.
  6. Nilsson Associates

    Nilsson Associates LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    The 16% consists of 1% for national advertising, 10% for royalties which is quite typical and 5% that covers all of the following:<br>1. Customer billings - done for you<br>2. Customer pricing and proposal - done for you.<br>3. Billing the customer - done for you<br>4. Collecting receivables and deposits into your account - done for you.<br>5. Customer work routing - work scheduling - done for you.<br>6. Customer calls incoming - toll free # - done for you.<br>7. Collecting late pays - done for you<br>8. Automatic ordering and drop ship materials as you need them - done for you<br>9. Newsletter to your customers - done for you<br>10. Upselling other services to your customer - done for you<br>11. Charting service requests - done for you<br>12. Input to accounts payable, statements and reports - done for you<br>13. Ongoing franchisee updates - done for you<br>14. Customer lead generation, telemarketing - done for you<br>15. As part of a national franchise, maintaining the market value of your business - done for you<br>16. Keeping abreast of materials and technology - done for you<br>17. Reducing your operating expenses via mass purchasing - done for you<p>Question - how much time or money would it take or cost to do these things yourself?<p>Nilsson.Assoc@Snet.Net
  7. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    Nilsson & Associates,<p>That really sounds like a great value. Most lawn contractors strength is in the actual production, not all those support services. All that support for only 16% would really benefit most guys.<p>I have been doing an organic program for 14 years now and I think it's important to communicate 2 things: 1.) What organics are and are not, the benefits of what they will and will not do. 2.) The results must be able to be documented.<p>As this board so well demonstrates, organics can leave more questions than answers. They also tend to invite undocumented claims and misinformation. These issues will need to be clearly dealt with in order for organics to become a solid element of the lawn care industry.
  8. richard

    richard Banned
    Messages: 74

    organics do work well,(how much scu or pcscu was used in the garden of eden?)they take time and during the first few years tend to need help during the period you are laying the groundwork for your soil.what i have found is a mix of both worlds workbest maybe a 60/40 split-i do use ibdu.the best supplement to your soil are humic and fulvic acids- www.humic.com will get you info...fulvics are awesome on breaking down clay(a soil test may show iron present in your soil-fulvics will break it down to a form the plant can really use) example of the power of humates: this fall everything was covered with schmeg(small organic debris-fir branches,alder leaves,etc.-lots of light debris)a customer who has been on humates years now has his beds treated each fall,i pull up one weekand his driveway is covered in schmeg but the beds are very clean minus the small branch type stuff it soaked into the soil...it is these organic acids that break down organic material without them in some forms all the carbon based &quot;fertilizers&quot; will just rot not compost.i also agree on a standard must be set for something to be called organic something along the lines of what oregon has done.also organics will vary from area to area around the country as do soils -this has left me to wonder how an &quot;organic national franchise&quot; can even exist,ex. how can someone in boston know when to add K to seattle soils? farm hard and prosper
  9. Nilsson Associates

    Nilsson Associates LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    Above posts raise a lot of questions, so here's more input ..<p>.. A national organic franchise will know what a lawn in Seattle needs because the &quot;man on the ground&quot; in Seattle will take a soil sample.<p>.. At the moment, most organic programs are supplemented by using weed and insect controls, but organic fertilizers are a step in the right direction.<p>.. Customers want green, weed & insect free lawns, and they'll try organics along with smart IPM program to limit or reduce the use of &quot;synthetics&quot;. <p>.. Don't get overly concerned with the science or &quot;material makeup&quot; of organics, customer perception is &quot;for it&quot; and it sells .. they feel it's safer, nobody claims that it's &quot;perfect&quot; .. no need to <br>deceive in advertising as the &quot;cure all&quot;.<br>Customers are willing to try it .. that's what matters.<p>.. Most customers don't care that much, don't want you to go into a &quot;lecture&quot; or get technical about &quot;what's in the bag&quot;. If it says organics on the bag .. that's good enough for the majority of them. If the contractor who is applying the materials<br>knows and feels that the organic material<br>is safer and better than using conventional<br>products ... what's the problem?<p>.. Organics is a &quot;market niche&quot; that customers are taking a closer look at. In other words there's a growing market for the stuff. New advances are being made .. and the &quot;environment&quot; has been a hot issue for many years ... so anything perceived to &quot;help the environment&quot; is taken to be a &quot;good thing&quot;. It sells!<p>Anybody who would like to receive a brochure on the &quot;Organic Opportunity&quot; I mentioned above can email me (on subject line just say organics) .. your name, telephone number, company name and postal mailing address to:<p>Nilsson.Assoc@Snet.Net<p>P.S. For those of you who already received the Organic brochure, there's still time to come on board and get started in your area for this coming spring, and for the Franchise to get customers for you in your area.<p><p><br>----------<br>Phil Nilsson<p><br>
  10. SLSNursery

    SLSNursery LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 442

    I have been reading this discussion and started another post related to IPM. I'm fine with the ambiguity between Natural and Organic, because I am comfortable with my definition of the different products and their uses. We use Espoma and Roots products all of the time. The benefits are invaluable IMHO.<p>I've had some trouble understanding so called Natural Lawn Care type companies though. I know this was an isolated incident, but one time I talked to an operator about different products (they did not know I was involved in the industry) relating to, among other things, grub control. The same guy who had 100% natural plastered all over his van was explaining to me that Turcam and Dylox will take care of the grubs. In fact he had a dozen bags in his van at the time. This doesn't fit my definition of 100% natural, and I'm curious to know if others have experienced this. I have been practicing IPM for several years, and present my approach to customers. I hope that as time passes these franchises, or even local 100% natural lawn care companies stay true to their word, so that we are all on a level playing field, as others have mentioned.<br><p>----------<br>Phil Grande - Soundview Landscape Supply - http://members.aol.com/slsnursery<br>Ivy League Landscaping - http://members.aol.com/scagrider

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