“The Revenge of the Acorn”: Lyme Disease Explosion

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“The Revenge of the Acorn”: Lyme Disease Explosion

An Article written by By:
Sean McNamara

Redding Nursery
sean@reddingnursery.com
203-938-3297


It is shaping up to be a very bad year for ticks in Redding, Connecticut. The risk of Lyme Disease is higher than ever and…

“The Revenge of the Acorn”: Lyme Disease Explosion

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How often to sharpen blades??

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I was wondeing if anyone had an idea of how many hours they have on their mower before they will sharpen the blades? Just noticed this week that my blades are cutting all the grass so I bought a second set of blades (easier to just put a new set on and then I can buy a grider or something to sharpen the old set). My mower only has 32 hours on it and I figured I could go a year before I would need to sharpen them. I only have 6 yards, maybe a total of 3 acres that this mower cuts and im…

How often to sharpen blades??

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ARA Foundation, Toro Company partner up for service project

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MOLINE, Ill. – A new Community Impact Project launched by the American Rental Association (ARA) Foundation and The Toro Company Foundation was held at the Boys & Girls Club of Northeast Ohio’s Broadway Club (BGCNEO) in Cleveland on June 16, 2021.

The Community Impact Project involves both foundations working with local nonprofit organizations to give back to communities across the country through various rental-related projects. The series of projects kicked off by helping BGCNEO, which serves over 8,000-member youth ages 6-18 throughout a five-county footprint. The Cleveland branch’s Broadway Club is home to a robust outdoor horticulture program where youth engage with and experience nature through a variety of hands-on, interactive program opportunities.

Through the launch of the Community Impact Project, the BGCNEO was revamped in a day. Projects included revitalizing a pollinator garden, creating and planting new landscaping beds and refurbishing the baseball infield.

The inaugural Community Impact Project was made possible by a group of more than 20 volunteers from six rental companies and two Cleveland area organizations.

  • Bobcat of Cleveland – Leppos Rent, North Ridge
  • Event Source – Cleveland
  • General Rent-All – Massillon
  • Handy Rents – Eastlake
  • Miller’s Party Rental Center – Akron
  • Sun Rental Center – Mentor
  • Gardeners of Greater Cleveland
  • Ormiston Landscaping

“Partnering with The Toro Company Foundation, our members and volunteers has been an impactful experience,” said Marcy Johnson, ARA Foundation executive director. “Together, we have been able to leverage the talents and resources of everyone involved to promote the rental industry while helping out a local community.”

Three additional projects are planned for this year. The next Community Impact project will be held on July 21 in Denver. For more about the ARA Foundation, click here.

 

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All the Highlights You Need From the First Two Days of the 2021 California Summer Trials

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SuperCal petunias_SakataAfter a lost travel year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Greenhouse Grower team was eager to get back to the West Coast for the 2021 California Summer Trials.

The post All the Highlights You Need From the First Two Days of the 2021 California Summer Trials appeared first on Greenhouse Grower.

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My first post, question about throttle speed

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The throttle cable recently snapped on my Scag and I had to simply pull the throttle lever near the engine all the way to where the Kawasaki factory set-screw was set. The mower is raging with power now, goes about 2mph faster, with tons of cutting power. I don’t have an RPM gauge….. is this throttle stunt going to damage my mower? Or am I now merely running it at the full 18 HP it was designed for? Thanks for your help.

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Aeration unplugged

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Gerry White sees aeration as a way to give clients the healthy, green lawn they want – and produce a nice profit margin for his business, pH Lawn Care in Essex, Massachusetts. At heart, he’s an agronomist, after spending years working as a golf course superintendent. “The lawns we aerate are going to do better and so we’ll be more successful helping those clients,” White says.

When White took over pH Lawn Care earlier this year, aeration services amounted to about 3 percent of the company’s overall revenue. Now, sales are nearing 10 percent, and White would like to see that number climb to as high as 20 percent. “It’s a recurring service in my book,” he says of the importance of annual aeration.

Not to mention, aeration yields a profit margin or 20 to 25 percent, which is higher than other lawn care offerings, he says. Why is the service such a financial win for pH Lawn Care? White attributes its efficiency and efficacy to ride-on aerators, which work for most of his properties. “It’s a specialty machine that I can’t say enough about,” White says. “It increases productivity.”

In the first year, he paid off the machine in labor savings. For an acre property, he’d have to send two crewmembers and two walk-behind aerators to the site. “That doubles my payroll right there, and to price it competitively with other companies, I wouldn’t be able to do it,” he says.

With the ride-on, the job gets done with one machine and one technician. “You cut the time in half and one guy can do it,” White says. “Getting a ride-on aerator was a no-brainer.”

Ride-on and walk-behind aerators have a place in the equipment arsenal of an operator that wants to grow an aerating business. The add-on service can be an after-thought for companies and customers – but when sold at the right time, and delivered with maximum efficiency, aeration is a win-win.

“Anyone who takes pride in their yard will want aeration for the nutrient factor,” says Jim Caywood, owner of Green & Grow in central Kentucky.

Selling, just in tine.

Caywood says pride is a deciding factor for many customers who say yes to aeration. But first, they must understand the benefits the service will bring to their lawns, and that’s where technicians come in.

Direct contact with clients is one layer of the sales effort at Green & Grow. The company also sends out mailers and emails. By Aug. 1, the company is “selling it hard,” Caywood says. Green & Grow can aerate from August through December, or when the ground freezes in their region.

Matt Green, who owns Green’s Lawncare & Property Services in Indianapolis, talks to customers about aeration in spring. “For us, the key to sales is getting to them when they are excited about their properties in the spring,” he says.

Right away in early spring, Green and his team assess clients’ properties to identify any issues and needed services. “If their property needs to be aerated, I make sure they know that, and I explain the services to them,” he says.

The service is scheduled in August, and the sales effort continues, Green says. “We’ll keep selling through August with email blasts, and by the end of that month, we pretty much have everyone lined up for service for the next two months,” he says. This year, the company will try something different and do another sales push in fall for the next year’s schedule.

Sales at pH Lawn Care are reinforced with leave-behind information that technicians tuck into service write-ups. “As each technician goes to a property, they leave an estimate for aeration and deep-root feeding for shrubs, too,” White says.

White treats the service as a necessary, annual part of an overall lawn care regiment. This mindset is communicated to customers when they sign a contract. “Aeration is important to do every year.”

pH Lawn Care ties in overseeding with aeration. “That way, we are integrating new grasses into people’s lawns,” White says.

Picking a plug puller.

This year, Green will invest in a ride-on aerator because Green & Grow is selling aeration to larger, estate properties in the Indianapolis area. “There is enough flat, open land where it makes sense to have the ride-on,” he says, noting that the investment is $7,000 to $10,000, so it’s a big decision.

However, Green expects to grow the estate business, and a ride-on aerator is the most efficient way to handle the job. Green likes the versatility of walk-behind aerators because they can fit through gates, be maneuvered around trees and work just fine for small yards. “You can also get on to hills,” he says. (A ride-on is best operated on flatter land.)

Caywood has been operating ride-on aerators for four years and reports tripling production because of the labor-saving equipment. “It works bets in larger, open areas,” he says.

Caywood recently demoed a new aerator that has a weight-forward device and hydraulic tines with a pressure gauge so he can control and monitor the pressure. “You don’t want too much pressure because it will bury the tines too deep and you could tear up the turf,” he explains.

Recently, he purchased a walk-behind aerator that has a split drum that allows the operator to turn the machine without pulling tines out of the ground.

Some landscape contractors weigh the decision: rent or buy? With aerators, White goes for the purchase every time. “It’s not cheap to rent – it can cost $75 per day – and then you have to add that to your price, so your margins aren’t as good,” he says. White will rent “out of desperation” if one of his aerators in the fleet goes down.

Overall, an opportunity to increase aeration sales and perform the service efficiently (and profitably) makes this service a promising sleeper. White’s advice: “Don’t be afraid to spend more for a better piece of equipment that will produce a significant amount of revenue. The less downtime you have, the better.”

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Steel Green relaunches sprayer/spreader

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LEBANON, Ind. – Steel Green Manufacturing has increased the liquid capacity of the SG46 zero-turn sprayer/spreader from 30 gallons to 50 gallons, and it still fits through a 48-inch gate.

“We have made the SG46 even more productive and versatile,” said Brent Mills, senior product specialist and co-founder of Steel Green Manufacturing. “With all the power and spreading capacity of our largest model (SG52) in a more compact size—and now with a 50-gallon spray capacity—the SG46 is perfect for both large commercial properties and residential properties.”

In addition to the new 50-gallon liquid capacity, the SG46 sprayer/spreader holds up to 320 pounds of granular products with its Spyker 220-pound hydraulic-driven granular system and dual high-density poly fertilizer trays. A 23.5-horsepower Kawasaki engine rounds out the SG46 as the most powerful and productive stand-on sprayer/spreader of that size on the market today.

Other notable features of the new SG46 include its 3-section variable spray control (up to 8’), variable spread width (up to 25’), 200,000 sq. ft. coverage per fill (based on using ¼ gallon spray nozzles), stainless steel side deflector and breakaway boom with hidden plumbing, 22” rear wheels for additional hillside stability, 5-gallon fuel capacity and 10-mph maximum transport speed.

The 50-gallon SG46 is available now and costs $13,395.

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Vertex Aquatic Solutions launches Oxygen Saturation Technology product

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POMPANO BEACH, Fla.  Vertex Aquatic Solutions announced the launch of Oxygenation Saturation Technology (OST) to eliminate lake anoxia while preserving stratification. The side-stream saturation technology manages anoxia by pumping low dissolved oxygen (DO) water from a lake, canal or lagoon, saturate it with oxygen and return the water.

A characteristic of eutrophic lakes and reservoirs is oxygen demand in the bottom waters that exceeds available oxygen stored in the bottom waters during stratification.  As a result, bottom waters remain anoxic for a significant portion of the year leading to nutrient recycling, harmful algae blooms, habitat loss, fish kills, odors and decline in water clarity. This method of OST of adding oxygen is quantifiable, allowing for any specified concentration of dissolved oxygen to be maintained based on water depth, temperature and salinity.

“At Vertex, we are always looking into innovation and new technologies to bring in new ways and enhanced solutions to our customers for their current needs,” said David Helt, president at Target Specialty Products. “We are pleased to announce that Vertex Aquatic Solutions along with their partner Gantzer Water LLC, has developed a new patent-pending Oxygenation Saturation Technology, based on side-stream saturation technology.”

“Vertex is excited to launch the release of the Oxygen Saturation Technology,” said Patrick Goodwin, aquatic resource scientist for Vertex Aquatic Solutions. “This breakthrough technology is going to change the way we manage anoxia and improve lake water quality drastically.”

The new patented Vertex OST is equipped with a water pump specified for either freshwater or saltwater, oxygen dissolution chambers, bubble capturing system (BCS) to off gas unwanted nitrogen and plumbing. The system has been designed to deliver the full capacity of oxygen generated at the lowest possible electrical cost. This high oxygen water is injected via an energy-dissipating header (EDH) into the bottom waters of a lake or canal, where it will move through natural dispersion throughout the entire density layer. Injected oxygen behaves like coloring dye where it moves throughout the density layer shortly after injection. There are no bubbles made and no mixing to disturb bottom sediments or compromise the natural thermal structure of a lake. This system allows the oxygen concentration in water and at the sediment interface to be far greater than what traditional aeration could provide.

 

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Deere 994r has arrived

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So for all y’all that have been waiting. The 994r is apparently out to dealers now. My guy just text me the pictures he just got one in. Says they are going to have it listed at 15999.

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Traded my Cheetah today for a V-ride II

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I’m sure this will get mixed reviews from my LS brethren, but hey, it is what it is lol!

I’ve been thinking about doing this for a while now, and today when I saw a 2019 61 V-ride for sale at the Dealer, I had to inquire. The short of it is (assuming my guy I’ve worked with for 8 years is telling the truth) the mower was traded in by a fella who trades every two years because he likes his stuff under warranty. It’s got the Kawi 801 engine. I traded my ’16 Cheetah 61 inch with the 31 Kaw…

Traded my Cheetah today for a V-ride II

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