Introduction to Landscape Maintenance and Design

Although physical attributes are required for this job, mental awareness and micro-muscular movements are also required to be able to react to machinery under high performance. The biggest reason we own our mistakes is because we understand that some things are out of the realm of our control, especially when working with machinery that performs under high stress in high temp or high humidity scenarios.
Fast Lawnscapes

Introduction to Landscape Maintenance and Design

Although physical attributes are required for this job, mental awareness and micro-muscular movements are also required to be able to react to machinery under high performance. The biggest reason we own our mistakes is because we understand that some things are out of the realm of our control, especially when working with machinery that performs under high stress in high temp or high humidity scenarios.

    Section #1


    Weedeating is the ideal task of filling in all spots where the mower does not fit. It is as essential as the lawn mower, and often catches everybody's eyes first, next to the lawn's overall look. A weedeater is a 2-cycle hand operated machine that is single-piston driven and runs between 1,000 and 8,000 RPM's. It rotates counter clockwise with plastic string at the ends to cut the blades of grass with precision and a straight edge. The most important part of this equipment is to understand its user operation, and so we will cover the following subjects

    Section #2

    Weedeating around perimeter of houses and fence-lines

    This will be the area that clients go to look at your quality of work done at their house first. The ideal thing is to make sure that you hold the handle of the weedeater with a firm grip and that it is level with the outline of the lawn mower that should be made as you begin a new house. The key way to know how to weedeat in these areas is to find a solid tree stump, and start rotating the weedeater nearby the stump. As you begin to raise the revoultions, slowly bring the weedeater head closer to the tree until you can see and hear it touching the tree. That will be the length of distance you should keep the walls and fences of the house away from the weedeater. Try to envision that distance everywhere you go, and also remember to cut the grass level to the height we cut it at. Also, another key part of this subject is your direction of travel, or how you walk around the house to get the best results. Everybody has their own way of remembering to get every corner of the house, but doing it as described will ensure that 100% of the time you don't miss a patch. What you want to do is start on the right side of the house facing it from the street. You then want to start with the inside perimeter of the property line which may be the inside of the fence-line. You will want to go slowly around this area, taking in the information above to find the sweet spot to cut the grass at, and then you want to speed up slowly until you are at a comfortable walking speed. As you approach the end of the inside perimeter of the property line, if we weedeat the outside then continue back to your start point but on the opposite side of the line. If we do not do that, then start at the line you stopped and turn to the house and begin to weedeat the perimeter of the house. As you do this, do not forget to look up and keep your head on a swivel for any potential light poles, lawn chairs, hammocks, island beds, etc. that the mower may not be able to mow evenly as well as all trees. continue to do the house perimeter until you get to the same line as them, and then go and weedeat the trees and hammocks etc. and continue on until you reach your start point of the house. After doing that, do one more walk around of the front and backyard with the weedeater running to double-check any places that may need to be blended in.

    Section #3

    Light poles, trees, other obstructions

    As you come across these things, they may vary in the methods required to achieve a clean finish. Always remember to tilt the weedeater in the direction you move it when blending it to the surrounding grass around it. Just like in the previous subject, you want to ensure you are at the proper radius of line under WOT to ensure you don't wrap the weedeater up in whatever you are trying to trim around. These areas normally should be cut slightly lower than the cut of the rest of the house as in these areas the grass may not always grow at the same level as the rest of the yard. If you ever are lost or wondering how you should cut it, always take a few steps back and look at the object and the area that surrounds it to find the right level to blend it to.

    Section #4

    Cold - Start and proper operation methods

    This is probably the most important part of your job, because without the right process you may cause damage to the equipment resulting in either being out of that piece of equipment for the day or waiting for a donor piece of equipment to be brought to you. This may not always be the case though, and we want to act as if there is no loner equipment and what we have is what we have, as the donor equipment may be on another trailer or we may just not have enough of that equipment to provide a donor at any time. With that being said, The cold-start is normally the one thing everybody gets wrong. However, if performed correctly, the equipment will be able to tell you whether it is in working condition or not to prevent elongating misuse of the equipment until the repair is too costly, resulting in us having to buy new equipment. First and foremost, you want to make sure that the proper gasoline mix is being used for the proper equipment. At FLM, we have made sure that the majority of equipment we use on all trailers has approximately the same gas/mix ratio, which is 50:1. However you may see some equipment that actually calls for 40:1 gas/mix ratio, but that will normally be disclosed depending on which equipment you will be given to use. Next, you want to make sure the choke is in the cold start position. You then want to pump the primer bulb 5-15 times to evacuate the air from the fuel tank and carburetor and prime it with fresh fuel. Next, depending what equipment you use it may have a half-choke switch, but you pull the rope to crank the equipment until it sputters. after that, you either set it to half-choke, or you have to switch the carburetor to open and hold down the throttle lever until the equipment kicks on. after it starts, continue to hold down the throttle lever until the equipment fully revs to its redline for ten seconds. after that, you can begin to operate as you do. After starting it on a cold start, going to start it again should be relatively easy. If you go to start the equipment again in the next 30 minutes after shutting it off, leave the carburetor open and just pull the starter cable and it should start within 1-3 pulls. If it does not start again after the third pull, switch the carburetor back to cold start and repeat the cold start process. Normally after about five to ten minutes of use it will reach operating temperatures and stay warm enough to start back up after turning it off.

    Section #5


    This is one of the first things not only clients look at but neighbors and our competition. It is very important to understand how to get a straight line from edging all paved areas as well as some garden beds if need be. The most important part of this process is gauging the edge as it is when you first arrive to the site, hold the edger at a thirty degree angle IF the grass is not overgrown or flush with the concrete, and keep a steady hand while looking out for sprinkler heads. It is important to look up and forward of your line of movement to ensure that nothing gets missed and you don't hit a sprinkler. all sprinkler heads on the sidewalk should be edged as well as any power or plumbing fixtures. Take a close look at the current edge, and determine if this is a normal path of the edger. If not, be prepared to have to clean up the edges and have remaining plant matter that will have to be picked up.

    Section #6

    Blower Operation (Res)

    There are many different methods to blowing debris, and it is all dependent on time of year, time of day, weather and surrounding areas of the site. When using the blower, you do not want to cross the same path multiple times, but instead just like vacuuming make small diagonal pivots into different directions. Once you get the hang of it, you will more than likely take approx. 3 minutes to blow off an entire home by yourself. We will section this into two parts: Residential and Commercial leaf blowing. both have their similarities and differences, but the key is to learn both methods and incorporate them in difficult areas.

    Section #7

    Blower operation (Comm)

    Section #8

    Mower Operation

    This is the bread and butter of our service. In order to achieve maximum results, there are only so many ways to perform this task, and this does require knowledge of how all other machinery works in order to properly pass them and be aware of all problems and surroundings at ALL times. This is normally only operated by the crew leader as there are many things you hold responsibility for being on the mower, and when a client wants to make contact with us they will normally go to the person on the mower. In order, this is how we want you to perform this task every time.

    Section #9

    Crew Leader Responsibilities

    You are talking to clients, guiding the crew, keeping up with inventory needs, and checking the mower's fluid and blades. This is an ideal position for someone who is bilingual to help avoid anything getting lost in translation. You are responsible for:

    Section #10

    Crew member responsibilities

    This is anybody who is not the crew leader on a crew. You are the soul of the company, and it is important to know all things above as well as:

Source: Fast Lawnscapes (Community Member)

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