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please don't stone me...

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by Surferbum21, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. Surferbum21

    Surferbum21 LawnSite Senior Member
    from SW OKC
    Messages: 392

    ...for asking this question. i have searched and researched and researched some more. I am trying to learn about fert & squirt programs. I just took the test (2 weeks sooner than i thought I was going to and made an 80 on the CORE and Ornamental tests). I submitted all my paperwork to get my license and am in the process of getting a spray rig and a spreader.

    What I need help on is I have no idea what to do once I am set up. I am located in central Oklahoma. I know most co's are offering 6 application programs but what is involved? When do you do each application? Is each application the same for all lawns during that time? What chemicals are used? why do i see some people doing granular fert n others liquid fert? what can be combined with each other? what should I steer away from?

    I am starting slow into these to get a grasp of things and to make sure I do a good job. I don't want to get overwhelmed with work and not do the work right. I have 80 lawn accounts and am really only marketing to them at the moment. I kind of have a grasp on what to charge but will hopefully get more of a feel for it quickly. Any info and advice is greatly appreciated.

    VARMIT COMMISSION LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 547

    WOW! You got some big balls. Your gunna get stoned by all the "my chit don't stink" I'm a seasoned pro , read the label, I know but I ain't gunna tell, I figured it out so can you guy's!
  3. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,177

    Where in that post did he seem to have any "big balls" comments? I'm confused.

    Anyways, surferbum21, congrats on your test and all. In just about the same boat as you, maybe a little ahead of you but I had some luck at least getting info and a start at my local John Deere Landscapes Dealer, they recently aquired lesco. The reps want to help you, the more landscapers who buy their stuff the better they do and if they set you up and get you started then they of course will do well, so play that game. Its free information, whether everyone here agrees with that or not. If your wise enough to take all the info you can, sort through it and find whats good, bad, and ugly than you ll succeed.

    Get in touch with a local JDL supply place and see if they can help you out. Check out other local companies programs, they may be advertised or just call them and ask as a homeowner what the average package includes. See what they say. Just need to find as much info as possible and weed through it all, get what you can out of it and start from there.
  4. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,986

    I had a big rock ready! But the truth is that if I hadn't been an applicator for another company for a few years before I went out on my own, I would have been lost too.

    Here are some questions for you.

    How big is the average lawn in the areas you want to be working in?

    How do you want to position yourself? By this I mean, do you want to be the one size fits all, low end, high end?

    How many clients do/will you have?

    What is your budget?

    There are reasons I ask, not just trying to bust you up.

    If you will answer those questions, it will help us a lot in putting together a good program.
  5. daveyo

    daveyo LawnSite Senior Member
    from N.J.
    Messages: 907

    I would go down to a local dealer and talk to one of the reps there. Do you know who your supplier is going to be? They'll be more than happy to help you. You can even call your local extension center if you have one. Application time, quantity and over all health of the grass are some factors to consider. Hopefully you can recognize some weeds and stress causes of your customers lawns already. If not study up on weed id and germination times of those weeds, when do certain weeds thrive and when is the best time to apply any herbicides if any. When is the best time to water, how much water is needed for each particular lawn. Each customer of mine has the same basic program, just slightly tweaked if needed.
  6. Whitey4

    Whitey4 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,448

    I am a bit surprised you could pass the test and still have so many questions.

    First, sure, talking to a supplier is great, but why not join your local LCO/Pesticide association? They can supply you with a lot of this sort of info, targeted towards your region of the country.

    As mentioned... how large are your properties? How many customers? Do you have a business plan or are you just winging the whole thing? Seeing what sticks to the wall?

    I am still learning, but don't be looking for any silver plate to replace doing some independent research and work of your own. Even if someone told you what to do, you still need to know why.
  7. grenskpr

    grenskpr LawnSite Member
    Messages: 120

    I gotta agree with varmit.. what they teach you at that there pesticide class?now that yur edicated get out there and git you some bisness.

    Seriously, this seems to be the problem in alot of states. I have a turf degree and all these Johnny come latelys think they can make lots of money on the spray side it just belittles our profession. Everythings fine until you have problems or misapply and don't have a clue how to fix. Just my .02

  8. Surferbum21

    Surferbum21 LawnSite Senior Member
    from SW OKC
    Messages: 392

    well the reason I am able to pass the test and still have questions is b/c the books are just that. They tell you what you need to know (book smarts) but don't actually tell you how to do it (street smarts). What I am stressed about is competing with other companies for customer's business. How are their programs put together? For instance, I know stage I is pre-emergence but have seen so many different chemicals you can use or mix together with others. The sheet I was given isn't broken done very well as it only shows 3 applications needed and I see others offer 6 applications. Are applications just every 2 months (12mo/6apps) to keep an eye on things and take care of as needed? Like go in Feb/March and do Pre-emerg...April/May Post-emerg...June/July fert n spot spray...Aug/Sep...fert n spot spray...Oct/Nov winterizer...Dec/Feb???

    I have an acquantance I will try and see if he'll let me go on a ride-along to see how things are done and will call several local companies and act like customer to see what they offer and prices.

    Sorry if this thread was bothersome but I like to make sure I cover all my basis and learn as much as possible before doing something. I like to do stuff right the first time as my father taught me. I want to make a name for myself and do a good job building a reputation. Not make a quick and easy buck. Thanks for the input guys
  9. MnLefty

    MnLefty LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 367

    Surferbum- I'm not trying to "pile on" here, and I don't mean this with any ill will, but the questions you're asking could be construed to many here as taking the easy way out. You're asking questions like what products to use, what can be mixed, how many apps etc... when you should really be doing your homework in a turf textbook or other resources learning the fundamentals of turf management so you can decide for yourself what products to use and when... Could you get programs from here and go out and do just fine? Probably... but at some point you're going to have to answer intelligently when a customer asks why. The search button and google should be your best friends for awhile, like I said, getting a turf education, not just finding a program. Start by exploring the links provided...


    Again, not trying to be a jerk. It's just that you're asking for information that guys here have spent money and/or time learning through schooling or experience or both. I know you're trying to do your own research, but you're asking how when you should be asking why.
  10. grenskpr

    grenskpr LawnSite Member
    Messages: 120

    MnLefty.. well said

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