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Hidden Cost with Lawn Service Companies

Hidden Cost with Lawn Service Companies
May 31, 2014 SNH Editorial Team

Hiring a “professional” lawn care company sounds like a good idea.  But is it?…It’s an all-in-one solution.  Service companies focused on one task, in this case, lawn care seems to imply a level of expertise.  The premise: Hire experts to maintain your property and stay clear of damage and extra costs.

Lawn care companies come automatically and on a regular schedule to cut and fertilize your lawn and blow/clean your driveway.  It sounds great – – – and for a while it even looks good – but here are significant hidden costs- financial and health- you should be aware of:

(1) Lawn care companies operate on a set schedule – this means they want to cut your lawn even on rainy days to maintain their schedules.  Here are four reasons why cutting wet grass is not good for your grass:

• Rain makes grass bend down which means it does not get cut properly

• Mulching mowers can’t handle the amount of wet grass; they spit out clumps, which

kill grass where left

• Younger grass roots may be dislodged in wet ground from mower

wheels and mowers’ feet

• The bigger the mowers the deeper the trenches where ground is soggy

You will likely wind up hiring someone to fill the trenches with soil and restore/reseed lawn all of the time.  Worst of all, week lawns allow weeds.  And what will your lawn care professional usually advise? He will tell you the lawn needs to be “fed” – a.k.a. you need to spread fertilizer with weed killer.  These chemicals would have likely not be needed or could have been sharply reduced had proper basic mowing occurred.

(2) Lawn care companies spread disease.  As they mow one lawn after another all day long without proper, if ever cleaning of their equipment the carry seeds and chemicals.  Your lawn care company is likely to suggest once again to “treat” your lawn (more chemicals!) against weeds when this too could have been avoided all together had their tools been cleaned in the first place.

What is the solution?  Back to basics.  After years of  trying to find solutions within the confines of landscape companies, I am back to hiring one fellow who uses our equipment for our property – from shovels to mowers! Our lawn looks better than ever, with only a few weeds here and there. Things are working beautifully.  Neighbors have started to ask what I am doing to get the lawn looking this good….it’s a visible improvement!

The fellow who comes to take care of our lawn can adjust his mowing schedule to weather conditions.  He is using our small self-propelled mulching mower.  The lawn is cut and mulched and thus fed properly via its own, organic nutrients and there hasn’t been any damage in the form of deep tracks/trenches.

From my earlier video on deer fencing you already know how important it is to me/us to have less chemicals for the health of our dog.  Our previous dog died from melanoma of the digit – cancer in his paw…. I will forever wonder, if lawn chemicals played a role.

I would like to feel walking bear foot on our lawn does not expose our bodies to potentially harmful chemicals. Thus I am a fan of organic gardening and any/all techniques that reduce chemical applications are high on my list.

This year I proved to myself that starting with the obvious makes sense:  I made one change in lawn maintenance.  No other fancy steps toward green/ organic gardening and it turned out to be an even more dramatic improvement than I expected. Our lawn is more beautiful and, I know healthier!