Wet Grass!!

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by jdeer, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. jdeer

    jdeer LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    I'm a 23 guy trying to start a career in sales and also build a new Landscaping company on the side. I've mowed my parents lawn for years and I worked with another lawn service as well. I still have problems determining when to cut the grass after it has rained. I dont like the way a lawn looks after cutting it when it rains. The tire marks in the lawns, and slide marks too. Sometimes I think my mower is to heavy, and should use different equipment??? Any advice or tips from the old and experienced?!?!?!!? Anything is appriciated.
  2. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    I have cut in the rain, been caught cutting in a torrential downpour, cut after the rain, and even skipped accounts after 2 days of no rain due to damp, wet and soggy yards. It depends on how the soil on a particular lawn handles the moisture. If it sits and causes a soggy lawn, wait until it dries out a bit. If not, it is not unusual to cut almost as soon as the rain stops.

    Like I said, each tard is different and most yards will have spots that are softer than others due to moisture.

    You just have to judge each lawn before starting you service and see if the lawn can handle the mower weight and the cutting, or if it needs to be skipped for a few days.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Stepping off the velke considerably reduces the weight, this is probably one of the most obvious yet most often overlooked things you can do, always step off the velke when even remotely in doubt. This makes a big difference, and walk the Wb across.

    After I cut for an entire year with a float deck, I ran into a used fixed deck Wb for a grand, 5 years old... Anyway, I bought it and it makes a BIG difference, the fixed deck is a LOT lighter... Note the fixed deck takes about a month to get used to, even if you've cut a ton of lawns before.
    Keep in mind, fixed decks are not for everybody... I love them, but some Lco's HATE them, so...

    The other thing that helps is take it easy and learn the 'slip' point of your tires, then avoid this at all costs by keeping the tire 'pressure' (not the air but the force it exerts on the turf) below said slip point. So don't accelerate, turn or brake as fast... You won't always get it right, I still leave a mark here and there, but again it helps.

    Other than that, I try and remember the yards themselves... Some take to cutting the very moment it stops, others are better off waiting a day or two, and a FEW take 2-3 days before I can even think about it. So, cut the most resilient ones first, the notoriously muddy ones last, best I can tell you.
  4. jdeer

    jdeer LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    Sooo I guess I understand that you need to wait it out and feel for the lawn/grass itself, but do the customers know and understand that concept? What if the grass is 4 5 inches tall??
  5. Total.Lawn.Care

    Total.Lawn.Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 840

    Just explain the situation to them. I am sure they would rather wait a day or two to have it cut as opposed to having runs in the lawn from the mower. If it is that tall, you may have clumping issues as well if it is wet.

    It is possible that (depending on yoru standard cut height) that you will have to double cut to get a smooth finish and proper spread of the discharged clippings as well.

    The more you learn your properties, the easier it will be to judge how to manage them in less than optimal mowing conditions.

    Good Luck
  6. jdeer

    jdeer LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    That is a good reply.. thanks. While we're still bullshiting... What is a good height to cut at?? I know during different season the grass shoulld be cut at different heights.. what are they?
  7. fiveoboy01

    fiveoboy01 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,988

    I try to let grass dry off if at all possible before cutting.

    Sometimes I can't do it. I use a WB, so ruts really aren't much of a problem. But they still can happen.

    I'm more concerned with clumping and the grass sticking to the underside of the deck than rutting or slipping tires.

    Like topsy said, getting off the sulky helps on inclines where preventing tire slide is concerned.

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