Tag Archives: lawn care

Lawn Mower and Weedeater Safety

Lawn Care Business operators must observe safe operating practices.

If you have read our course work and materials about how to start your own lawn care business, you know how important safety is when you are operating your own lawn care business.

This morning, as I was driving to an appointment, I heard the familiar sound of a commercial string trimmer and commercial lawn mower.  I detoured slightly out of my way to see if it was a familiar lawn care company.   I didn’t know the guys running the equipment and they seemed to be doing a nice job on the lawn grass they were cutting.

Though they were doing a professional job on the grass, something struck me enough about the scene that I grabbed my camera and took a quick photograph through my window.

What do you notice about this picture?

Lawn mower and weedeater safety
Okay, I am not going to beat up on these guys.  They did quick, efficient work and the grass looked good when they finished.  But,  they need to think some more about safety.

Long-time readers of this blog and of our “Start A Lawn Care Business” program probably already know the safety problems seemingly apparent in this photograph.  Let’s start with the string trimmer safety guard.

1)  Line trimmer safety guards

Look at the weedeater.  Where’s the safety guard?   Apart from holding the line limiter blade, the safety guard provides some protection from flying rocks and debris.  We recommend not removing safety guards.  They are there for a purpose.

2) Lawn Care Operator clothing and safety gear.

The guy with the weedeater is wearing shorts, low rise walking shoes, no hearing protection that I could see, and no safety glasses.  What safety gear/clothing did I miss?

Look at his legs.  He is getting pelted with grass and debris.  What happens if the weedeater slings a rock into his leg causing a gash and then he hits a pile of dog poo that gets into the cut?  (Trust me; I know about weedeaters and dog poo)  I’m certainly not a medical professional but dog poo in an open wound can’t be good for you.

Hearing protection?  “What?”   I SAID “HEARING PROTECTION!!!”  I know hearing protection is uncomfortable and inconvenient.   So what…WEAR IT.

Safety Goggles?  Guys who never wear safety goggle never read this blog….BECAUSE THEY CAN’T SEE ANYMORE!!!   Wear safety goggles!!!!

3)  Awarness of surroundings

The guy operating the commercial walk-behind lawn mower is throwing grass all over the guy who is already covered with grass from his weedeater.  Lawn mowers throw things other than grass.  They also throw sticks and stones…those hurt bones.  Be careful where you aim mower discharge.  Oh, and the guard on the mower?  Yeah, he has it flipped up so it’s not doing any good.

Lawn mowing is dangerous.  Use caution.

If you don’t know all your safety options and obligations, check out the CDC and OSHA at CDC.gov and OSHA.gov.

Good luck guys.  Be sure to check out our Lawn Care Business program.  It is a perfect resource for anyone starting out (and with less than 5 years experience) in a lawn care business.

Mowing height: proper length of lawn grass.

Proper mowing height for lawn grasses.

“Just cut it as short as you can.”

I am sure you have heard this statement from your lawn care customers.  Customers (especially the cheap ones) think that cutting the grass super short will lengthen the time between grass mowing services.

Well, in a manner of speaking, they are correct.  If you continually mow lawn grass too short there eventually won’t be any lawn grass left.   Weed grasses will take over the lawn.  Instead of mowing it as short as possible it is better to follow suggested mowing heights.

Suggested mowing heights for some of the most popular lawn grasses are:

Turf Species

Mowing Height (in inches)

fine-leaf fescues

2 to 3

tall fescue

2 to 3

perennial ryegrass

2 to 3

Kentucky bluegrass

2 to 3

creeping bentgrass

1/4 to 3/4

zoysiagrass

1 to 1.5

buffalograss

2 to 3

When you are cutting grass you should also remember the rule of 1/3.  This rule states that you should only cut 1/3 the length of the blad of grass at each cutting.  Therefore, if a lawn has tall fescue that needs to be cut after it has reached 4 inches, you should not cut it any lower than to 2.67 inches.  (4 – (4 * 1/3) = 2.67

Type of grass, health of the grass, soil consistancy and nutrient level, and amount of water the grass is able to absorb are all factors in how often and how tall the grass needs to be cut.  Following these simple guidelines will help you determine how often to cut your lawn care customers lawn and how much to cut off at each service.

If you are interested in starting your own lawn care business.  Visit: www.StartALawnCareBusiness.com for much more information.

Professional lawn care. What does it mean to be “professional?”

by: Start A Lawn Care Business

Have you seen them? Have you seen the shabby looking pick up trucks with push lawn mowers in the back driving around your town looking for grass to cut for extra spending money?

While there is nothing wrong making extra spending money mowing grass during the summer months, many lawn care business owners want to step their businesses up a notch and turn part time on-the-side landscaping work into full-time professional careers in the Green Industry.

What separates a professional LCO from a part-time operation?

Knowledge:
Professional lawn care business owners have the knowledge to perform jobs correctly and recommend solutions to difficult lawn care related problems. Most anyone can grab a lawn mower, get customers, and mow yards. However, professionals know what types of grass they are cutting and at what height it should be cut. Professionals know how to perform soil tests and interpret the results. If a customer’s lawn needs fertilizer, professional lawn care companies know which formulation to recommend and they know how to apply it correctly.

Lawn Care Equipment:
Guys with beat up lawn mowers inevitably have equipment failures. Professional landscapers purchase commercial equipment and they maintain their equipment properly to reduce down time. Lawn mower blades are kept sharp. Sharp blades reduce ragged tearing of grass blades which causes stress and browning. Well maintained lawn mowers do not leak oil and they run cleaner since their air filters and oil filter are changed regularly. Customers (and potential customers) notice professional equipment.

Time Management:
Full-time commercial grass cutting companies manage their time diligently. Their customers never have to wonder if the grass will get cut on schedule. If rain prevents grass cutting, professional mowing outfits are able to get back on schedule quickly and without much notice by their clients. Professional lawn care companies know their customers rely on them 12 months per year. Lawns don’t need to be maintained during cold months but there is always other work that a LCO can take care of. A professional lawn care business makes money year-round.

You might be happy making a few extra dollars in your spare time cutting grass. However, if you are looking to step your business up a notch and eventually turn it into a more profitable and professional business, our lawn care business package can help you reach your goals.

Visit our website at: http://www.StartALawnCareBusiness.com