How to trim overgrown Daylilies?

If you ever get a phone call from a customer asking you to trim some of their landscaping, it is important to do a little research on the type of plant before you just go ahead and break out your hedge trimmers. Sometimes there is a better way to handle things than by simply hacking something back. In this discussion from the Gopher Lawn Care Business Forum, we get a chance to learn about the best way to deal with overgrown Daylilies.

One lawn care business owner wrote “I needs some help. what is the best way to trim these plants? I don’t even know what they are. Should I trim in the the spring or wait until the fall? This is for an apartment complex that called me for help. The apartment manager said the renters have been complaining about the overgrowth on the sidewalk. Any tips or tricks you could suggest would be greatly appreciated.”

How to trim Daylilies.A second lawn care business owner wrote “those are Hemerocallis, commonly known as Daylilies.

Once the blossoms go by, you can cut the stems back to the greens. If it can wait until the fall, you can dig up some of the bulbs that are close to the walkways, thus eliminating the over growth and next spring they won’t grow out into the walkways.

If it can’t wait and the owner says cut them back, I would thin them out by digging some of the front ones up and transplant them somewhere or maybe you know someone who would like some new Lily Bulbs or have a place for them yourself.

A real quick fast way is to use a hedge trimmer and that will zip right through them but I don’t think you will be happy with the results.

I know it’s a different plant but they share similar traits. We have to trim the Red Yuccas every once in a great while but using the hedge trimmer doesn’t always look the best.”

A third lawn care business owner added “in the past, I have quick trimmed Daylilies when I worked for someone else. I too thought the results looked shabby. Eventually my ex-boss got complaints about the results and taught everyone a different technique which involved digging out the bulbs where necessary.

Doing so makes a really nice edge against the sidewalk. It needs to be redone from time to time, but that is great repeat business. Trimming though does take about 1/10th the time

Ultimately these different techniques are what makes each of our companies different. Be forewarned though, I have picked up some commercial clients this year because of complaints on this very issue. I was told their previous lawn care service provider was hacking away at the Daylilies and the clients didn’t like the results.

When it comes to customer psychology, here is an interesting lesson that has stood out to me. I’ve never seen a customer go from a less expensive service to one that costs more even if the cost ends up the same due to the extra services. I think it’s just a perception thing.

As an example, one of my customers complained about the cost of leaf removal so instead of halting mowing due to the grass going dormant I offered to continue mowing and bagging throughout the autumn. The cost was very nearly the same as performing one large leaf cleanup at the end of the season but in the end instead of a big bill, they had the cost spread out over a few months.”

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