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Homercles

Landscape quote...reasonable?

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We are wanting to convert part of a side yard area, getting ruined by lack of sun and runoff, into a pathway with paver stones, gravel, and add two large crepe myrtles (untested to the pathway).  This quote seems high but I don’t have a broad experience to judge:

Mobilize/demo/prep

20’ steel edging 

12 Limestone Step stones (2’x4’ each)

5 cubic yard pea gravel 

Underlayment fabric 

TOTAL FOR ABOVE: $2,800

2 ‘30g’ crape myrtles:  $1,250

Fence repair (have a broken gate):  $125

2 drains relocated with pop ups: $500

 

This company did prior landscape work with excellent quality, but in the past I’d stopped using them for mow/maintenance as they were expensive.  Is this an appropriate ballpark?  These companies are busy right now so it’s hard to get a lot of bids on the work.  Thanks for any insight. 

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4 minutes ago, dingleberryswitzer said:

Only thing that seems totally outrageous is the cost of crepe myrtle.  Those things pop up like weeds in my yard.  Their $50 for 1  gallon pots.  

The one we are trying to match is 8 years old and over 7’ tall.  I shoulda mentioned that, so we are paying a premium for two large and established one.  

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Posted (edited)

What city? That seems like a pretty small area but overall I’ve gotten quotes much higher than that to install a walkway with the same materials.our walkway would be around 90 ft though

Edited by LebongJames

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Cedar park, TX.  It’s probably 40-50 linear feet from the edge of the driveway to the back where we want this to go.  

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I would put the quotes on the high ballpark side, but landscaping like tree service and pools is dictated by availability. If you can wait or get other bids I don't think you will get many that would be higher.

Agree with dinglebeeryswitzer though the crepe myrtle quote is definitely too high unless you are trying to match some less common type. 30 gals will run $100-200 each and are easy to plant, especially since they are already clearing the area.

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3 minutes ago, StruggleBus said:

Why not have your husband do it for you?

Haha surprised it took that long. 

But seriously after doing several outdoor projects this spring I understand why people don't want to do all the labor.  The job in the op probably takes a crew of 4 guys working their asses off an entire day at least.  No body wants to spend all day sweating their balls off digging and scraping and lifting, etc.  Plus you need the skills to make it look decent.  You'll pay accordingly.  

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Pea gravel would run about $300 (Whittlesley), other materials maybe another $300, so seems like $2000+ in time/labor for demo/install of the pathway?  We (I) did a similar size area with 1/2" granite gravel.  Can't recall how many hours I spent spread over several days, because it was the heat of the summer and I didn't want to spend my entire weekend just working on that.  Worst part was hauling it from the driveway to it's final resting place.  If I had easy access to back the truck to where it was going and dump it directly, it would have been easy peasy.

Agree with others, crepe myrtles seem high.  

F broken gates, pay them whatever for that, $125 sounds like the deal of the century.  I hate messing with 'em.  

No clue on drains.

If you can, I'd probably wait for some other, and hopefully lower, bids.  Or maybe just wait until fall and if no football, do it yourself.

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Thanks all.  Thoughts on pea gravel vs crushed granite for a walkway that gets a lot of runoff?  I’m worried that crushed granite would get washed away easily.  

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3 hours ago, dingleberryswitzer said:

Haha surprised it took that long. 

But seriously after doing several outdoor projects this spring I understand why people don't want to do all the labor.  The job in the op probably takes a crew of 4 guys working their asses off an entire day at least.  No body wants to spend all day sweating their balls off digging and scraping and lifting, etc.  Plus you need the skills to make it look decent.  You'll pay accordingly.  

Yeah I have two young kids, a full time job, and don’t have the experience, truck or even a wheel barrow to do it myself...and it’d look like crap after taking me a week to finish.  I’m happy paying for it. 

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The Crepes would require removing some existing crushed granite and maybe relocating a drip line.  It’s in another area. 

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22 minutes ago, NeverMarryAStripper said:

That's always been my philosophy

If someone gets paid to do it, its harder than it looks.  

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Posted (edited)

Gonna go with these guys minus the trees.  We know they do good work, it’s partly visible from the street, and feel the premium is worth it given a known quantity during a period of high demand.  Thanks y’all. 

Edited by Homercles

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Thanks all.  Thoughts on pea gravel vs crushed granite for a walkway that gets a lot of runoff?  I’m worried that crushed granite would get washed away easily.  

How about 1/2”-1” Fairland Pink gravel? I think that would give you the look you want and stay in place. Material cost should be similar to pea gravel ($50-$60/yard).

If you have a wheel barrow, a decent back and easy access to the site, this isn’t a bad DIY. You could have the gravel delivered by someone like a geogrowers, get the pavers and the border at Home Depot. DIY would run you $500 to $600 and take about a day depending on access.

Again not a bad DIY, just depends if you view it as exercise or work below your pay grade. Either way, post pics when it’s done.

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Thanks all.  Thoughts on pea gravel vs crushed granite for a walkway that gets a lot of runoff?  I’m worried that crushed granite would get washed away easily.  

Look up Gravel Lok. Once your granite path is prepared, you spray it on and it locks the gravel in place. It’s invisible and keeps the gravel permeable.

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That's seems high to me. I would just do it myself. But WTF I'm retired and I like to stay busy.

That's about a 4 day, 6 thirty pack job.

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Posted (edited)

Anyone got some good recs for me to look into getting a quote for my backyard in Houston? My back yard isn’t very large, but we’re lookin bf to add concrete slab (maybe even tied in to the 8’x8’ slab leading out from back door) and also adding a pergola. I don’t have the eye for this really, or the skill anyway, so I’m gonna hire someone regardless. Would like to spend less than 5k for the whole ordeal but who tf knows 

 

ETA 8x11 pergola with like an additional 8 ft wide by 2-3 ft long section of concrete if we can tie it into the existing pad. 

Edited by Etexhorn13

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Anyone got rec's in Austin for a landscape/outdoor kitchen design and possibly install?  Grill sitting on the covered porch is taking up too much room.

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We just pulled the trigger with southern outdoor appeal for an outdoor kitchen.   Didn’t do an overly exhaustive search/bid process but these guys came highly recommended from two others who had their patio revamped with good reviews and quality work.  

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On 6/4/2020 at 8:28 AM, Homercles said:

Cedar park, TX.  It’s probably 40-50 linear feet from the edge of the driveway to the back where we want this to go.  

The quote is reasonable except for the crepe myrtle. But if you have a truck and like sweating, you can pick up the stone at ASAP Stone on Anderson Mill either in a flatbed or in 5 gallon buckets. I'm on a hill and because of that and not wanting people screwing up the pool and deck, I used multiple trips with an SUV and 5 gallon buckets and child labor to make the job easier. We have a few retaining walls and I really didn't want wheel barrels going over travertine work. So I would back up into the driveway and have the kids help me carry the stuff up stairs to the upper retaining walls. If they stopped working, I would ridicule them and hit them with a stick.

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My 3yo daughter needs to get beaten by a stick just about everyday anyways as terrible threes is far worse than The Derrel.  However I don’t think she’d be any help with 5g buckets of stone.  In fact she currently tends to make things more complicated when she tries to help.  
 

In addition my 6yo boy may get interested as some weird parallel to his Minecraft obsession...but I doubt he’d be physically much help either.  
 

Point being I assume your child slave labor was older than that?

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Posted (edited)

Here’s the finished product.  Took 4 guys a total of 8 hours to knock it out, and the mountain of pea gravel they had to do it was impressive as it’s 3-4” deep.  The two drains were relocated so hopefully this will solve my mud/dead grass problem and move that roof drainage closer to the street.  No way I was going to get this done without either fucking it or myself up in the process.  
 

Doesn’t help that the first thing my neighbors (downslope from me) did was to ring their backyard in elevated beds.  So rain piles up against my fence looking for an exit.  They built some half ass French drain that simply holds the water in a pile of rocks for bugs to breed in.  

00B6AF79-9F98-41C6-87AD-ED6DB1C4FBA3.jpeg

Edited by Homercles

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On 6/4/2020 at 4:34 PM, Jerry Callo said:

If someone gets paid to do it, its harder than it looks.  

Carved into South Austin's mom's headboard?

 

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Homer, that looks great. And don’t worry about the 3yo daughter’s behavior too much. I think 3 is a hard age with girls, it’s like the terrible twos on steroids. It should improve when she’s 4.

Anyway...back to the project... that gives me inspiration to do something with my side. I’m not sure what just yet because it needs to be regraded. However, having grass on the side yard is BS. If you look at other geographies, it’s usually something utilitarian like a sidewalk.

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