This page includes recommendations for products to help you in your lawn care business.
Zero Turn Mowers
I have owned many zero turn mowers. My top two choices are Scag and Hustler. Gravely makes a great mower that is a little more affordable. Exmark is the industry leader. There are other great companies producing zero turn mowers. These are my favorites. Other factors when choosing a mower include personal preference, dealer location, dealer support, and pricing. A 48" mower is very versatile for starting out. A 52" or 54" mower gives you a little more efficiency on larger properties while still being useful no small properties. 60" mowers or larger can help you tackle the big accounts.
I love the husqvarna trimmers. I owned the 326ls which was great at only 9 lbs. Now I am using the 525ls which is a great trimmer and includes anti-vibration features.
Stihl also makes a great trimmer. My first choice would be the Stihl FS 94 R which a Stihl dealer described to me as the closest thing to the old FS 80 which was fantastic. My second choice for a Stihl would be a Stihl FS 90 R.
Equipment defender is a new line of trimmer and blower racks. They are simply the best designed racks I have seen. They are designed to prevent trimmers from rotating in the rack. They also support the engine in the rack and come with a built-in keyed lock or upgrade to a combination lock. Fits open or enclosed trailers. Check them out
I don't know how to improve on Redmax blowers at the moment. It is the one piece of equipment in which I have the most confidence. They are dependable and powerful. Highly recommended. If you are starting out or targeting smaller properties, you could buy the Redmax EBZ5150RH. There are 3 models larger than that as well with the largest being the Redmax EBZ8500RH which is a powerful beast of a blower. I prefer the models with RH which have the throttle mounted on the tube of the blower. The models without RH have the throttle on the left side of the blower. Check out the models at www.redmax.com. You often buy brand new Redmax blowers on ebay.
Equipment Defender's blower rack is great for prevent theft and securing the blower. Most blower racks hang the blower from a hook. This rack provides support underneath the blower in what is a much improved design. It is also designed to fit all blowers from all major brands. Fits open or enclosed trailers.
I admittedly rarely use an edger and do not own one at this time. They are very handy when edging properties with many sidewalks or curbs. In, my opinion edgers are also easier to use than edging with a string trimmer so many prefer using a edger. If I were to buy one off the shelf, it would probably be a Stihl FC 90.
I prefer the long handle hedge trimmers which allow you to handle tall shrubs. I also find them to be less straining on my back. Short trimmers are great as well at about half the cost. I would buy Stihl. A long handle model to consider would be the Stihl HL 100. I short model to consider is the Stihl HS 81 R.
Golden Fox makes the current boots that I wear. You can check out their selection at www.goldenfoxfootwear.com They are less expensive than Danner. I have owned both brands and been very pleased with each. Both brands are very comfortable and easy to walk in for miles.
Fertilizer and Weed Control Products
Fertilizer Spreader (push)
After researching push spreaders, I purchased a Spyker. My spreader is the Stainless Steel S60-8020. I have been very pleased with Spyker. The spreader throws an even pattern. It is strong and sturdy. The criticism behind Spyker spreader has been the heavier weight. I do not find it to be overly heavy. I have been pleased and would purchase another Spyker.
Fertilizer Spreader/Sprayer (ride on)
If you follow my youtube channel, (click here to subscribe) perhaps you heard that I won a brand new PermaGreen Triumph ride on spreader/sprayer at the 2015 GIE+EXPO. Needless to say, I was very excited. After using the PermaGreen, I am very impressed with the quality of the machine. With the ability to spread granular as well as spray liquid, this machine is both versatile and efficient. This is the only ride on spreader/sprayer I have owned so I really can't offer much information about the other brands.
Fire Ant Control in the Lawn
Advion fire ant bait is the product I use to keep fire ants out of my lawn and my customer's lawns.
Harrell's is a supplier of fertilizer and weed control products based in Lakeland, FL. Harrell's covers about half of the USA. I order through my Alabama rep. Harrell's is a great company focused on service. They produce their own fertilizer and supply me with my products needed to keep lawns beautiful. You can learn more about Harrell's at www.harrells.com
I have used other companies for printing items such as postcards and business cards, but I find that I use vistaprint for much of my basic printing like business cards.
Focal Point Communications can be found at www.growpro.com. They offer many print and marketing materials for the green industry. I recently ordered postcards from them for my EDDM campaign. I was very pleased with the customer service and the quality of the postcards.
I purchased my last set of yard signs from www.turfsigns.com. Turfsigns.com has great quality signs that hold up well in the weather.
I use a 400 gallon spray unit with a split tank (300/100 split) made by Graham Spray Equipment. It is equipped with a 300 foot hose mounted on a Haney reel. My unit has a Bean pump. The staff at Graham have been great to work with and they make a great product. Graham is based in Geogia. If you are looking for a less expensive option for a spray unit, you may consider a Lesco unit. You can learn about Graham Spray Equipment at www.grahamse.com
Commercial Push Mowers
I have some experience with both Toro and Exmark commercial push mowers. The videos to the left gives a brief review of them both while explaining some of the differences between the two. No doubt that the commercial push mowers are much better than a residential model. The question is whether your business has enough need to justify the additional cost.
Residential Push Mowers
I have typically used a residential model push mower for my lawn care business, simply because I don't take very many lawns requiring a push mower. I tend to focus on mowers with a Honda engine. You can either buy a Honda mower or find another brand with a Honda engine like the ones shown here.
Website Design/SEO/Payment Processing
Yorty Designs created my lawn care website which can be seen at www.alabamalawnpros.com. My website continues to be my #1 tool for gaining customers for my lawn care business. Yorty Designs works with many lawn care businesses building websites, providing search engine optimization services, as well as offering a credit card processor feature on websites so customers can pay through the lawn care business website. Check out Yorty Designs here.
Lawn Care Logos
There are a number of options for getting a logo for your lawn care business depending on your budget. There is a choice of lawn care logos are available on our website for $49. You can see those here. For larger budgets, you may consider running a contest on www.99designs.com or www.designcrowd.com. You could also hire a graphic designer directly to create a logo for you. You could also use a company like www.landscapermarketing.com which has a great portfolio.
Lawn Care Letters
I offer 13 letters that I use in my own business available for $19. You download the letters in Microsoft Word format so you can edit them and you them for your own lawn care business. Many people have purchased these for their business. Check them out here.
Lawn Care Insurance
You can purchase general liability insurance from many local agents. If you are looking for an agent with more knowledge for your field, Daryl Erden is an agent who understands the insurance needs of lawn care business owners. You can find Daryl's contact info at www.coveryourgrass.com
Lawn Care Software
If you are starting out or running a fairly small lawn care business, I highly recommend using yardbook.com. It is a free lawn care software which I have personally used and highly recommend. It has a built in credit card processor in the software. There are other options available, but personally, I am very pleased with yardbook.
The E-Myth Revisited is probably my favorite business book. It is an easy read. I find myself using this book to help shape the way I run my own lawn care business. Dave Ramsey's book is another recommended business book with practical advice to help your business. I used a free 30 day trial of audible.com to listen to E-myth Landscape Contractor. I recommend trying audible.com so you can download one of the books free also. You can keep the book even if you cancel within the first 30 free days.
Get one of these books as an audio book for free by downloading a free 30 trial of audible.com.
After being frustrated with another brand of printer, I finally asked a person in the printing industry which brand printer to buy. He recommend Brother and I have been pleased. Of course, they are not without flaws, but it is an upgrade over the previous brand. A small inkjet printer may be all you need for light printing. If your lawn business requires more printing, then you may consider a laser printer for more speed and to lower your cost per print. Pick one up on amazon or at your local office store.
I hope you have found these product recommendations helpful. Best Wishes as your build your own lawn care business.