Wasting time on weeds

Acute Cut

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Bellingham WA
Ok, first of all i HAVE read all the "search" threads on this topic. My question was not answered adequatly there. So i will ask it here.

I have a commercial account that has a decent sized bed across the whole front of the store. Grass is directly next to it. The beds are full of ground cover that has yet to expand. there are about 50 shrubs of different sorts as well in there. Every week i spend atleast an hour pulling damned weeds. And, when i am done i do not believe that it is very "professional looking".

What can i use to stop the weeds from coming up. One of my competitors has absolutly PERFECT beds. I have yet to find even ONE weed. I looked too. I worked last year with a "friendly" competitor. I gave them some sprinkler and fert business. they did an existing weed spray and a pre-emergent. I was not happy with the results so i asked them to reapply.

Needless to say i have spent every week pulling weeds for an hour or so. What can i use? I do NOT have a chem license. One guy from another company said to use round-up and Casseron 4G. I know casseron well and am guessing the 4G is some potent stuff. Before i apply, i want to ask you the experts for your professional and experienced opinions. Thanks all.
 

yardsmith

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Ohio
Had same problem with local TGI Fridays. Weeds every week. Finally sold the owner on weedblock with next mulch installation. Works well (not perfect), but now the mulch above the fabric is a little thick & I'm getting weeds ABOVE the weedblock. Oh well........
 

Rufur

LawnSite Member
Location
md
what kinds of weeds are they I have a few properties that are nightmares seems mostly the ones next to empty lots-open fields etc
 

TGCummings

LawnSite Senior Member
Weeds can be a serious problem in all landscape beds. Is there any mulch covering the bare soil? One of the first lessons in my Harcourt Learning study guides was to emphasize never leaving bare soil in landscape beds, or this problem will happen, and continue. When light is touching earth, weeds germinate. Try to sell the client on laying a nonorganic (black plastic) weed barrier covered with bark chips or ground bark. Or, if controlling weeds is a part of your contract consider doing this out of your pocket if the price is not too steep. If you're already being paid a flat fee to control the weeds, you might as well make your job easier, and therefore more profitable. ;)

Good luck!

-TGC
 

TGCummings

LawnSite Senior Member
Oh yes, one more thing:

If the landscape beds are directly adjacent to the lawns, you might want to install some sort of header, or edging, to seperate the weed beds from the lawn roots. Flexible plastic makes a good, inexpensive header, but be sure to install it at least four inches underground (some recommend eight!), and about 2-3 inches above the soil. Makes for a nice aesthetic effect as well.

Good luck!

-TGC
 

Stinger

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
Central Texas
Spot spray with roundup or if you need a over the top application consult your local chemical/pesticide supplier. They can provied you with a product that wont harm the type of plants in the bed. But you need to be absolutely sure what plants you have first when consulting these guys. Do you have a lisence to apply herbicides commercially?
 

Runner

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Flint, Michigan
Acute Cut, You say that your beds have ground cover that is still establishing? Does this mean tha you have no type of barrier down? If so, you're in good shape. It's late now, and the weeds will be slowing down here real quick like, but in the Spring, buy a product known as Preen. It's a dry granular that kills all the existing SEEDS in the soil. It works great, and will not affect any of your existing plants, including your ground cover because they spread by root and repropigation. I apply it in the spring when everything comes out of dormancy, then some more about once a month or so. It doesn't take very much. You may still get an occasional weed here or there, but this cuts down in the weeds CONSIDERABALLY. This stuff is available everywhere.
 

Mr.Ziffel

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
North of Seattle
Acute Cut, It's my impression from what I have read in the Landscape forum that the LS guys do NOT like the weed barrier under bark because if you put bark over it thick enough to cover the plastic the weeds just grow in the bark and if you leave it too thin you're raking up your plastic.

I just sent in my application for the 3 day pesticide training course in Bellingham in March. The cost of the training and study materials was $153. Taking the test is extra, depending on the license you need. Find them on the web at
http://pep.wsu.edu

I have used Preen in mulch beds and it works well. The cheapest place I found it around here was Costco--they also have large rolls of weed block which is stronger than the black plastic.
 

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