More and more people are searching for affordable lawn care in 2022 as gas prices rise.
Is ‘affordable’ lawn care still a thing?
Is it cheaper for me to perform my own lawn care or to hire a lawn care service?
Let’s look at the 10 aspects of lawn care you should take into consideration. The old saying goes, “You get what you pay for.” And, that couldn’t be more true when it comes to lawn care. And, the truth is when you add up the cost of the products and equipment needed to perform lawn care yourself, paying for a lawn care service makes a lot of sense financially.
10 Steps To Lawn Care & Their Cost
- Weed Control
- Disease Management
- Pest Management
- Organic Matter
- Lawn Aeration
- Dethatch/Power Rake
- Mowing Properly
Steps 1-6 are things that are applied to the lawn and that are typically included or available with a professional lawn care services lawn treatment program. Steps 1-6 are certainly included in Spokane’s Finest Lawns’ lawn care program.
7 is watering and if you are familiar with lawn care at all you understand the importance of watering.
Steps 8-10 are things you do to your lawn to maintain its health and appearance.
Fertilization, Weed Control, Micronutrients, and Organic Matter
To keep this article from getting too long and drawn out, we will group the 10 steps when they are closely related to each other to cover them in more detail.
If you hire a local lawn care service like Spokane’s Finest Lawns in Spokane, WA, the core lawn care treatment plan should include fertilizer, herbicide, micronutrients, and organic matter. All 4 of these things are needed to allow a lawn to reach its full potential.
Fertilization and weed control may be all that the average homeowner thinks is included in a professional lawn care program. But, these lawn care guys are savvier than you know and often take lawn care very seriously. To be able to apply fertilizer, herbicide, and pesticides commercially, a person must pass a test provided by the state in which they will be applying pesticides and then earn CEUs to maintain their license.
Micronutrients provide nutrients and benefits to turfgrass that aren’t provided by the macronutrients found in Nitrogen, Potassium, and Phosphorous (N-P-K). Introducing organic matter to your lawn will actually improve the chemistry of your lawn’s soil over time. Improved soil chemistry will allow water to travel deeper into the soil more easily and allow the grassroots to uptake the nutrients from the soil more efficiently.
The Cost To Do This Yourself
Liquid and granular products are now available that include all four of these components. For a 1/4 acre lot with a home and a driveway, patio, and sidewalk taking up the majority of the real estate, there is typically 5,000 sq. ft. plus or minus left of lawn. A bag of fertilizer is going to cost $20-$40 bucks by itself. If you choose to purchase and apply and more complete and professional fertilizer that also contains weed control and/or micronutrients and/or organic matter, the price per bag could be as high as $60-$70.
Don’t forget you need equipment to apply these products! For a homeowner to perform their own lawn care they will need at a minimum a lawn spreader and a lawn sprayer. If you go cheap on these items you’re still looking at $70 or so. Be warned that cheap lawn care tools perform like cheap lawn care tools! We highly recommend any homeowner serious about performing their own lawn care to purchase a decent spreader which is going to cost $120-$300. A cheap spreader will leave the operator frustrated at the very least and leave your lawn looking striped like a zebra at its worst. Hand-can sprayers can be purchased cheaply as the cheap ones have proven to work well.
The Cost To Have A Lawn Care Service Perform This For You
For a 1/4 acre lot, a lawn care service will charge $60-$70 per application. Now that you know the cost of doing it yourself, you can see why paying for a lawn service could be the best way to get affordable lawn care.
Disease Management, Pest Management, and Power Raking
We grouped these 3 lawn care tasks together because hopefully, you won’t have to do them at all!
That’s right, you can have a beautiful healthy lawn and potentially never treat a disease, kill a pest, or have to dethatch (power rake) your lawn.
Turf diseases are caused by environmental conditions. If the conditions are never right for a disease to enter your lawn, it will never be an issue. If turf disease does enter your lawn, this is when you want to have a great lawn care company on your side! Turf disease can quickly destroy a lawn if not identified quickly and treated appropriately. The cost of the products to treat turf disease is not cheap for anyone, a homeowner or a lawn care company.
Lawn pests include grubs to moles. Hopefully, you never have to deal with any lawn pest. Experience seriously helps reduce the time and money involved in eliminating a pest that is damaging your lawn. Ask your lawn care service provider about preventative grub control. If you are looking for an affordable lawn care service in Spokane, Spokane Valley, or Liberty Lake, please request your lawn care quote now!
Dethatching is only needed if the thatch layer becomes too thick. A proper lawn care program combined with lawn aeration each fall and proper mowing usually eliminates the need for dethatching. A dethatching machine can be rented but won’t fit in a car, and the cost is going to be somewhere around $100 for a day’s rental. It’s also backbreaking work. If you are not physically apt, dethatching should be outsourced to a local lawn service to save your back!
Watering, Mowing Properly, and Lawn Aeration
Where almost done going through the 10 steps to lawn care and learning why hiring a local lawn care service could actually be the best way to get affordable lawn care!
These are 3 must-do lawn care tasks if your goal is to allow your lawn to reach its full potential and look its best.
Lawns need water! During the hot and often dry summer months, watering when needed is going to be required to keep your lawn looking its best. If you aren’t up to watering manually, you can always have an irrigation system installed. Watering is free but it is pretty cheap. This is something that the homeowner will have to do on their own unless they choose to have a sprinkler system installed and maintained by a lawn care company.
Mowing needs to be done frequently enough so no more than 1/3 of the grass blade is removed during each mowing service. It’s also very important that your lawn mower’s blades are sharp. Dull blades will tear the grass blades while sharp lawn mower blades will cut the grass blade flush. To ‘mow like a pro’ you need to raise your mower’s deck! Try raising your mower’s deck 1/2″ this year and notice the difference you see in your lawn. We bet it has a deeper green color and is thicker than in years past when you cut it to a shorter height. Try cutting at a 4″ height and admire the results! We cut grass if you’d like a quote for lawn mowing too!
Finally, lawn aeration is such an important aspect of lawn care. Every lawn should be aerated every fall! If you’re a lawn care nut, go ahead and aerate your lawn in the spring and the fall! Aerating reduces soil compaction and breaks up the thatch layer. A core aerator, which is the machine you should be using, will pull plugs from the soil creates holes in your lawn. Water and nutrients easily travel down to the root level after a lawn aeration is performed and as the holes fill themselves in the soil is less compacted and the benefits from this service continue for months. An aerator machine can be rented for $100-$200 for the day and once again will not fit in a car like a dethatching machine. It’s also physically demanding if you don’t opt to rent the more expensive stand-on type aerator. Not to mention, most tool rental stores will not have a aerator in stock when you need it most!
Hiring A Lawn Care Service Is The Best Way To Get Affordable Lawn Care Afterall
After reading this article we hope you understand the cost of the machines and products used to perform lawn care!
At the end of the day, especially if you put any value on your time, it will be cheaper for you to hire a local lawn care service instead of buying the equipment and products needed to perform your own lawn care.
Please contact us for a quote to care for your lawn. We want your lawn to make you proud! Our lawn care program has proven successful over the years we’ve been treating lawns in Spokane, Spokane Valley, and Liberty Lake. We’d love to save you some time, money, and frustration in attempting to keep your lawn healthy on your own.
Thanks for considering Spokane’s Finest Lawns for all of your lawn and landscape needs in Spokane, Spokane Valley, and Liberty Lake.