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Irrigation installation for $$$

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  • Irrigation installation for $$$

    From time to time I will read a post from someone seeking advice on how to stay busy year round, primarily through the "dry" season. Being from South Florida, everyone combats the "dry" season with sprinklers. Only the idiots who refuse to flip the "on" switch to their systems end up with the dry lawns. Is this concept of having an irrigation system unique to only to those in tropical climates? If not, then why wouldn't a lawn comp. in other parts of the country who experiences a dry/slow season learn to install irrigation during these months? It seems to be a win-win situation in that you make money on the install, the turf is now growing(keep cutting), the customer's happy, and your employees are busy. Any insights would be appreciated.

  • #2

    Most people up north use a rule when installing sprinkler systems. If you put the things in up here and want green grass. You can't just run the sprinkler when the grass goes dead. If watering is going to be done, it is constant, everyday for 2-4 hours per zone. I put my system in (NY state) on Aug. 19th. I already have 95 hours of watering put into my parents lawn, because if you start and stop, it goes dead again and the whole point of why you watered in the beginning goes down the drain. I put down fertilizer every month, water lightly everyday for 4 days and then go back to 2-4 hours 5 days a week, with all zones on.

    Down south, I guess you can water and stop and the grass stays green longer?
    Quality Lawn Care & Landscape Management


    • #3

      Here in Southeast Texas I find fewer people use sprinkler systems than in the panhandle area. This is mainly due to the fact that in West Texas (my experience is the Lubbock area) is mainly a semi-arid area with average rainfall of 18"/year. The main type of turf there is bermuda and its hybrids. Now I live in the Houston area (avg rainfall 30"/year) and older middle-class subdivisions do not use irrigation for the most part. Of course, the higher end subdivisions have used, and will continue to use irrigation. I am finding, however, that as the demographics of the area change (see Phil's thread on this topic), more and more people are putting in irrigation systems. It is not big enough to the point of builders offering to install, but that is probably only a few years away. This change in demographics and preferences is why I will take the state required corse in Oct and sit for the state irrigation exam in November. It certainly is a potential money making avenue in our area.
      Taybritt Landscape & Irrigation


      • #4

        Oh man you just don't know. You have very little overhead. You can rent a trencher for $50-$120 a day, depends on your soil type. You need a few trenching/square/spade shovels, wire stripers, hand ratcheting pipe cutters, rakes, and crosstip screwdriver. Once you get your bid accepted, you get 1/3-1/2 upfront to cover you cost and when your done, you get the rest. TONS of cash to be made. If you get into troubleshooting you'll need a few specialty tools but they'll pay for themselves real quick.
        Best advice I can give you is to find a good supplier, I'm partial to John Deere Landscapes but there are more companies out there.
        If you feel that you must burn our flag, please wrap yourself in it first.