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Working for Wal mart

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Tim C., Jan 25, 2007.

  1. Tim C.

    Tim C. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 54

    I have maintained a Wal mart store for a couple years, all we have done is mow the grass. Now they have built a new Super Wal mart and they want use to bid it. The problem is the contract calls for watering all the turf areas and new trees and plants, cleaning the parking lot, pulling weeds etc and they want it included all in one price. Does anyone have experience with Wal mart Supercenters and how did you do all the watering etc. without an irrigation system. Also, what level of service do they look for? Regarding weeding of beds, etc.
  2. dhardin53

    dhardin53 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 710

    Wish I could help you with this one, I cant.

    But We have the same Wal-mart super store going in here as well. I do a lot of commercial work now and was asked to bid on the new super wm. How much prpoery is your, We have a huge front empty lot in front of the store owned my WM. as well 2 huge run off ponds for the water off the parking lots. Behind the building is a large stack of earth that they dug out from the pits with grass as well. Are you haveing to deal with someone other than the old managers of the old WM?
    Im guessing there is 6 acers grass spread put over 30 acers.
  3. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    Wal Mart is one of the wealthiest Corps in the world and they want good reliable work done at the lowest rate they can get. It would be a good cash flow increase to provide these services but take the apropriate time to come up with a good bid and outline your services, everything you agree to do in a very specific contract.
  4. Lynden-Jeff

    Lynden-Jeff LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,405

    Around here I see dudes with the giant water tankers water commercial areas and city medians. They dont even get out of the truck they just have a little remote control fire hose type nozzle on the top that they operate from the cab. Always done in the middle of the night also. Im not sure how else you would water turf and such w/o an irrigation system.

  5. procut

    procut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,852

    Do you have a hydroseeder or access to one?? You could use that for watering.

    Or another thought, if you want the rest of the work, sub the watering to someone else.
  6. RHayden

    RHayden LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    We did a Super WM late last spring and we designed a temporary irrigation system and utilized 6 Nelson Rain Trains. I think there is a pic on our website of one of the Trains in action. There were 8 acres of turf to be watered along with some plantings and a thin strip of sod. You can't keep up with a larger property with water trucks and hydroseeders.

    Wal-Mart rarely specs in ground irrigation around here, but you can sometimes push it thru as an add on if you are involved in the installation phase of the project.

    dhardin: Do you know who the GC is on the Lincoln store?
  7. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    Are you sure its just to water till the Grass is established?????
  8. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,656

    If you read the contract carefully, the plant watering by hand refers to a broken down sprinkler system. Which you are responsible for also. Service level is normal. And the managers get a little extra picky every 3 months when the corporate inspectors come for a visit.
  9. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    I have been doing Wal-Marts for 8 years now.

    The contract has always been for watering the planting areas.

    I've never hand watered a planting area.

    IMO, if the landscape designer wasn't smart enough to put hardy plants in a planting area, then it's a design flaw.

    You CAN work with the store manager as well.

    In the past, with different parts of the Wal-Mart contract that's provided, I've "x"ed out certain things that don't apply.

    The first was that one store's irrigation was broken before I ever got the contract. The manager and I both signed off on an "x" through the irrigation part of the contract, not my responsibility.

    The second store, the manager had connections to someone that wanted to do the irrigation. Since I don't do irrigation, I said that's fine, and we both signed off on the other company doing the irrigation work.

    Both stores have the plowing company do the sweeping, not me, although I DO "supposedly" have to pick up garbage in the parking lot each week I'm there, however I don't see what difference it makes, since if I pick up the parking lot before I do the maintenance work, by the time I'm done, you'd never know I picked up the parking lot.

    Each week, I'll pick up (3) 30 gallon garbage bags of garbage, if not more. It's a pain, but it pays.

    The level of service pretty much depends on the manager.

    The first manager was VERY serious about no garbage left in the grass when I was done. The previous company would just mow over the garbage and make it a bigger mess.

    The second store I do, the manager is VERY laid back, and as long as things look trimmed up, they're happy.

    All in all, look at the 23 page contract they have, "x" out or sub out anything you don't / can't do, and make sure the manager agrees.
  10. Tim C.

    Tim C. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 54

    dhardin I am not sure of the exact size, I am guessing around 5 acre of grass, we also have two retention ponds. The old store is located in front of the new one, so they will eventually tear it down. I know there is going to be new stores going in its place, but not sure how much if any additonal turf areas there will be to maintain. We are still dealing with the same managers, but all we did before was mow grass and pick up an litter in our way. We were not responsible for watering, fertilizing etc.

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