Lawn care companies can vary in the different services they provide. Some are strictly maintenance providers—mowing services, edging services and leaf blowing services—while some are centered around treatment services—applying herbicides, insecticides or fertilizers. While there are some companies that will provide both types of services, it is a rarity. There’s generally a basic division between companies who mow and edge and companies who take care of your basic control product treatments. In this Sod University article, we talk with Ross Settle from Coastal Turf about what to look for in a lawn treatment company that applies control products to your lawn. Not all lawn care service providers are the same. Some care more, and that’s clearly reflected in the services they provide. Some use better products or have well-trained personnel. So, how do you choose one? Let’s dive in!
By Ross Settle of Coastal Turf
If you find yourself staring at your lawn in dismay and just don’t know what to do next, it may be time to hire a professional. But don’t make a hasty decision! Check out some of the local companies you might hire. This usually doesn’t take much time because most companies these days have an online presence and reviews are easy to find. You can also consider asking someone you know that has a nice lawn. You can ask neighbors, friends and families whom they use to help narrow down the list. It is also a good idea to find out how long the company has been in business and how they train their lawn specialists.
Is the lawn care company licensed and insured?
Most states have licensing and insurance requirements for companies that perform lawn care treatments. Always check to be sure the company is licensed by the state you live in. For example, the state of South Carolina requires lawn treatment companies to have a minimum level of insurance to keep the license active. This way, if something goes wrong, you won’t be left with replacing your lawn at your own expense.
Know what your lawn care company includes up front
Most companies are going to offer you a basic lawn program usually including weed control (pre- and post-emergent), insecticide and some type of fertilizer. But what else is included for the investment you will be making? Some, but not many, might include fungicides for no additional charge. This could be important if you know your lawn is prone to disease. Most companies offer free service calls between scheduled services to make sure that is included too. Some also offer discounts for military, first responders, teachers and senior citizens. You can also inquire about savings if you prepay for a year of service in advance.
Your lawn and landscape may need other services in addition to basic lawn treatment. If you have compact soil, for example, you may need to have a core aeration done. It is highly recommended you conduct a soil test as well. These lawn services and others like sod installation, soil amendments, tree/shrub treatment, mosquito control, flea/tick treatment or flower bed weed treatment may be important to you and should be part of the decision-making process.
Good results with a lawn care company begins with partnership and time
I believe one of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is assuming they can just hand their lawn off to the company they hire and the results are the sole responsibility of that company. The truth is when you hire a company to treat your lawn, it should be considered a partnership with that company and a relationship should be built. There are many things that affect the outcome of a lawn treatment program and the lawn care company is only in control of about 1/3 of that equation. The other 2/3 includes the customer and mother-nature. Feedback and recommendations from your lawn care company should be valued and acted upon to achieve the best “bang for your buck”. Depending on the existing condition of your lawn, results of a lawn program takes time and cannot be achieved after a couple of treatments. It is suggested, however, that you look for improvement after each application. It is fair to evaluate your lawn’s performance and the company you hired after a full year of service.
The best price almost never means the best service, so find out which company provides the best value for the needs of your lawn. If you do these things, you will make the right decision on the company you hire. Then fix a glass of lemonade, crack open a cold beer or pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy the fruits of your labor and the wise decision you made in your favorite lawn chair. Cheers!
Stay tuned in the future for Sod University’s blog on how to choose a lawn care company for mowing and leaf blowing services. If you are a do it yourself-er, be sure to check out our most popular control products below or shop all.
If you are looking for a professional to install sod into your lawn, be sure to check out a similar article on How to Choose a Sod Installation Company.