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Phase 4 Water Resstrictions

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by FOL, Apr 1, 2009.

  1. FOL

    FOL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    I know the benefits to going organic, but most people down here dont. They all are on a squirt and fert program and there brains are suffering from it.

    My question is, Are there any facts or tests that have supporting evidence that show soil permeability before and after a organic program has been established. I know that it helps but I need to support that with evidence to my customers. I have been so busy with school I have not had time to do any research myself and would like some help on this one.

    We just got put under a huge watering ban down here on the west coast of Florida and people are freaking out about there lawns. Read these restrictions guys, see what Im up against. It not going to be easy until the rainy season picks up....

  2. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    Sounds like a perfect market for annual color and color changes :)
    The loop hole for new landscape plants to be watered daily for the first 15 days and 3x/week after that up to day 45 and 2x/week for the final 15 days. So, new annuals every other month should mean $$$ for the landscape company that can schedule irrigation and provide color plantings. Best part is your only going to be working for those that can afford it. Next, you get 30 days of decent water schedule for establishment of seed. It says for new or replacement lawns. Overseeding should qualify to be irrigated as replacement planting of turf and you get 30 days special watering rules. Sell broadcast seed followed by 'post 2-3 times until the restrictions expire in June. Again, I see $$$ for those willing to work the market that can afford the intense maintenance.

    And don't miss the opportunity to upsell drip irrigation in ALL planting beds. They are still allowing drip 3x/week.
  3. FOL

    FOL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    I understand the marketing side of what I am up against. Seeding Floratam? Can you even do that, I have always used plugs or sod, I know you can seed with bahia. I wish everyone down here had the stuff. It is the most drought resistant.

    I need to find some supporting evidence, that will educate the customer and inform them what an organic program can do. I have midterms today and tomorrow. So my brain is tide with school currently. Does anyone out there have any documents or tests results that show conclusive/supporting evidence to an organic program and soil permeability? I would do the research myself, but I need to focus my time with school. I appreciate everyone's help with this.
  4. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,308

    Ban annuals along with the turf.!

    Organic matter retains more water and nutrients than sand.
  5. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    There is no such thing as "...conclusive/supporting evience..." It is foolish to follow a 'research project' that was done by someone, somewhere. From a research document you can get a basic understanding about what works and what don't , but most importantly is the - WHY.
    How will that WHY apply to my situation?

    It sounds to me like you want to give them an instant fix and if anyone says they can, they are selling snake oil. A healthy organic soil will perform better during drought, but don't try to promise them that b4 June.

    Here we have average soil and average rainfall and compost will make a difference that will last a long time. From my experience in Florida, I see a constant stream of compost just evaporating in that sand. You mentioned permeability. Does that mean you have clay?
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,308

    Careful with the terminology .... there is a distinct difference between an organic soil and a mineral soil with organic matter.
  7. FOL

    FOL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    I am not trying to say by any means that this is a quick fix. I know its not, maybe I did not word my statements properly. Wish I would have done better in grammar class.

    What I am trying to do is educate myself and educate my potential new customers properly. I have been ask alot by potential new customers how these water restrictions are going to effect them and if going organic will help there lawns during a drought, and they ask me, "if I have any supporting evidence to back those here says, claims, whatever you want to call them" and I only have a idea of what to say, sometimes thats not enough. Like I said I know the benefits, but 99% of my new customers dont know anything about the organic approach, I just would like to know I am representing this industry correctly.

    And yes the approach to why going organically will benefit, not all people can absorb, especially when they have had chemical guys feeding people and grass crap for years and there grass is still green. These people dont care, there grass is green. But they are potential new customers who are hard headed and will only change there ways unless they see facts on paper... It is up to people like us to then educate properly. And that is what I am trying to do, EDUCATE.

    I am new to this industry so be easy on me. And yes I am way north of tg and do work with a little clay. Hernando county is filled with it.
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Well, with a little clay to work with, you have an opportunity to build better soil tilth than with just the sand that I saw. The problem with clay is that root penetration is inhibited and with lawns that have a lot of soluable N dumped on them the roots tend to grow at the surface. Therefore the advantage of clay is lost.
    (This is true of Northern lawns - the concept could be different in Southern lawns)

    Your main point to make with organics, could be the idea that proper soil structure combines soil with OM to allow soil to soak up the water and hold it. Good soil structure is like a big fluffy sponge that holds a lot of water, vs, the soil structure more akin to a waterlogged stick.

    The reality is too create 'surface area' within the soil. Hopefully that type of visualization - or a better one - will make a bit of sense to them. Give you something to build on.
  9. FOL

    FOL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 96

    Thanks smallaxe I am off to school. I will follow up later.
  10. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,308

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