How much should grade/till/topdressing cost me?

wabbaloo(8 - San Antonio, TX)March 4, 2012

So we're getting to the point where our front yard has been taken over by broadleaf weeds, etc. I'm looking for the most economical way to actually have grass to mow grass instead of weeds. We're ready to roundup the weeds, and pay to have the yard graded and dressed with compost. We're fine with doing the seeding ourselves, and we already have irrigation.

I'm just wondering about how much I should expect having someone grade/level, till, and topdress to cost.

Thanks! All advice is welcome.

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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

There are so many variables that any info here would be just a guess. You don't have your location in your profile, but since I know you live in San Antonio and that you have caliche it might not be the best way to handle your lawn. The best way to know what it should cost is to get several estimates. You will probably find that each person you call will have their own way of doing things so the estimates will range widely in cost.

Try calling different types of lawn services from large to small to get the best range of options.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 8:37PM
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tx_ag_95(7/8 Lewisville)

Taking Rock Oak Deer's comments in mind, along with my "history" of growing up in San Antonio and knowing how much "fun" caliche is, I'd recommend putting in landscaping beds with shrubs and groundcover with as little grass as possible. It's the front yard, so you're looking for the highest curb appeal you can get for the $1, not for grass for the kids/grandkids/dogs to run on. And it's not only the money that you put down to install the front yard but the money it takes to water and maintain it, realizing that water is getting to be ever more in short supply. The latter is especially true in San Antonio but getting to be true in Dallas, as well.

Just my two cents.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2012 at 9:55PM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

wabbaloo - I tried to email you after you left a comment on my blog, but your email is set to "no-reply". If you post your photos here on GW, we will all be happy to help answer your questions.

tx_ag_95 is right, we recently had another water rate hike and those with lawns will take the biggest hit. You can also get rebates for converting the space to planting beds.

    Bookmark   March 6, 2012 at 10:02AM
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wabbaloo(8 - San Antonio, TX)

Thanks so much to you both, you're definitely right. I've already made mental plans for at least three areas to be converted. Color me excited...

Down at San Antonio's Southwest School of Art, they have some terrific examples of pittisporum, and I thought it would make an excellent boundary (about 3ft high) along the back of our 35-ft long patio, which is elevated off the ground from 10 to 17 inches (the backyard slopes slightly). Additionally, the rain drips off the patio cover directly inline with where they would be planted. But rock_oak_deer, you imply that pittisporum wouldn't be the best choice?

Thanks again for the guidance!

    Bookmark   March 7, 2012 at 10:44PM
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rock_oak_deer(8b TX)

Pittosporum does well in our area, I still have one left here from the original landscaping. Those may have been planted years ago before the drought and more local emphasis on native plants. There isn't anything wrong with them, it's just that choices for a new landscape should look ahead and not back.

They must trim their pittosporum regularly as mine is well over 8' tall and we have to trim it away from the driveway or it would be that big around too.

You should check out our swap on April 14th, we would enjoy talking with you about the plants and what works around here.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2012 at 9:23AM
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