Winterizing in South Texas questions

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by LawnMowerMan2003, Sep 24, 2007.

  1. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    I would like to add fertilizing services this fall, especially since 2 of my customers are requesting it. My plan was to buy a broadcast spreader and just pick up the stuff at Home Depot, but I'm not sure what kind I should use and I'm really not sure on the pricing either. It doesn't take long for a small lawn, but I wanted some professional opinions.

    1. What is the best mix in the fall for fertilizing, considering I do not plan to use any weed killers and can I buy my own Nitrogen and other compounds and mix them myself to save money? (Most of the lawns are St. Augustine, but some have thin grass that is probably Bermuda)

    2. When is the best time to apply it in South Texas? It is still kind of hot right now.

    3. What is a good rule on pricing (I estimated one lawn is about 4000 square feet and the other one is smaller)?

    And one other question:
    One customer that asked for fertilizing told me her last lawn guy just charged her the price of the fertilizer, and I don't feel that I should do it for free, especially since I have to buy a spreader, but could I just mark up the price of the fertilizer? :laugh:
  2. ampeg76

    ampeg76 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 297

    i don't really want to sound like a ass, but i have been frequenting this site for less than a year and posting here and there, i see this question come up a couple of times a week, i can see why some "old hands" to this forum either don't answer or give negative comments!

    many in this forum invest a bunch of personal time and money into doing things properly, hours of research, classes, reading, you get the picture....

    so my advice is to check out this site first:,1911,1848_0_0_0,00.html

    you can find out the steps needed to get certified:)

    go to your local half-priced books and search the home gardening section, they have many books dedicated to southern lawns, some are geared toward the novice, some are geared toward the more advanced!

    something you should think about

  3. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,954

    Ditto with ampeg. I worked several years in S.A. w/ChemLawn (NOT tg). You have plenty of time to apply 2 app's of heavy fert before Christmas.

    Good luck.:usflag:
  4. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    OK first of all I did a search and I didn't find anything helpful.

    Second, I posted this in another form; I shouldn't have to be licensed just to do fertilizer, as it is not pest control; I asked this in thread and nobody replied.

    Why should I have to spend hours of time and take classes just to put some freaking fertilizer on somebody's lawn? I'm not doing pest control, as I said. I think that would definitely overkill for what I'm trying to do.
  5. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    Anyway, thanks for the Dept of Agriculture site. Maybe they have the information I need.
  6. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    That site wasn't helpful at all; I can't even find what the rules are to fertilizing, so I still don't know if I need a license.
  7. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    Thanks for all your help ampeg76, since you're basically telling me to "Go read a book". If your time is so valuable that you don't have time to answer a couple of questions then why did you respond in the first place?
  8. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    I think your best bet would be to contact your local lesco rep. They are very helpful and this is what a lot of guy do when they first start. They will have all the fert formulation that are best suited for your area and also a basic program that you can apply to your clients lawn.

    If you choose to get your license, which I highly recommend, they should be able to guide in that direction also.

    As far as pricing.
    You should be able to get the bags of fert at lesco a little cheaper them Joe Blow homeowner, but you still need to mark up the product and add in profit for your time, gas, equipment, hauling, ect. What Im trying to say is dont just charge her for the price of the fert. You cant buy it, deliver it, install it, and clean it up for free. All that takes time and time is money. Get paid for it!

    Hope this helps.

    Oh yeah. The lesco rep in you area is Aaron his number is 210-590-2047.
    Good luck
  9. LawnMowerMan2003

    LawnMowerMan2003 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 768

    Thanks; that's a good idea. I wasn't able to find the information I couldn't find the information I need on the Texas site; I think I've looked at 2 of them and I found a whole list of regulations, but ironically nothing that seemed relevant to what I need. I am not saying I would not get a license if that is required; but I need to find out more information on that before I either come up with a plan or tell my customers I can't do it yet.

    To be honest I don't think it's worth the effort for that lady that expects me to do it for the cost of fertilizer anyway; however, I'm sure I have other customers that are interested and it would be in my best interest to help keep their lawns healthy if possible because I don't want them to look bad.
  10. ampeg76

    ampeg76 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 297

    my time is valuable, i thought my answer was more than reasonable, you missed the entire point!

    you want definitive structured answers from people who have invested in this field, thats a short cut to thinking, i nudged you in the right direction so you will find the answers yourself......

    no you don't need a license to apply fertilizer in texas, but people receiving luxury services expect more than just some fert being thrown around! which is why you got the ag site link......,1987,1848_5325_7016_0,00.html?channelId=5325

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