Frequently Asked Questions
Welcome to the grass is always greener on your side of the fence!
Following is a compilation of questions and situations I have encountered over the years. All information is specific to Lawn Doctor of North County Coastal. I invite you to contact me at any time with additional inquiries. Tom Taylor, Owner – Lawn Doctor of North County Coastal
Lawn Doctor is the highest rated national lawn care company, based in New Jersey. Lawn Doctor of North County Coastal is a franchise location based in Oceanside, CA. and has grown every year since 2005 to become the largest independent lawn care company in the area.
We are Oceanside based and actively provide services to customers from the coast to the 15 Freeway and from Carmel Valley to Fallbrook. Any inquiries outside of those areas need to be assessed on a case by case basis considering time and distance.
Quite frankly we believe we are the best in the business and take a personal interest in the customers’ lawn and landscape. We will assess your lawn in person and explain any recommendations for service along with answering all your questions before you decide. Additionally, the customer has direct access to the owner of the company should there be a question or concern. Our commitment is to respond to customer inquiries in a very timely basis. We still believe in good old fashioned customer service! Finally, we never require contracts, commitments or pre-payments.
We are very serious about customer service and producing results for your customers. Our reviews reflect that commitment. Check out our online reviews in Google, Yelp, Home Advisor, Angie’s List and our website.
Never hesitate to call or contact us with questions or concerns about the service. If we can’t answer your question via phone or email we will stop by to assess the concern in person.
Very simply, we ask you to contact us if you have any concerns regarding our services. We will do our best to overcome any challenges. If we cannot satisfy a customer then we will refund the cost of the most recent service and cancel any future scheduled services.
No way! We would never expect a customer to pay for a service they weren’t expecting or didn’t approve. If we think an additional service is needed we will communicate the need in advance with cost information so the customer can decide.
Actually it is! Lawns produce great amounts of oxygen, absorb pollutants and dust, sequester carbon, help reduce runoff and cool the surrounding areas. A great weapon against global warming! Yes, lawns require water but the benefits greatly outnumber the drawbacks so we should want to strike a balance with the pros and cons.
Payment terms are Net 14 days which means we expect to receive payment within 14 days of the service date. As a courtesy, payment reminder emails are automatically generated when late. If payment is not received by the next scheduled service our system applies a $10 late fee. Furthermore, if payment is not received by the subsequent scheduled service, the service will not be performed and the account will be submitted for collections.
Easy! We accept all forms of payment including cash, checks and all major credit cards. You can send payment from the invoice, through your online bank or submit payment online using our customer website.
Never! We do not require any contracts, commitments or prepayment of services. Instead we choose to earn your continued business with results and excellent customer service.
Absolutely! We do not keep credit card numbers electronically which could be subject to hacking. Instead the encrypted information is stored in the secure system database. You are always in control of the billing and can change or cancel the payment status at any time.
Good question! It may help to know that we operate a high volume business and can’t be everywhere at once or anywhere specific at any given time. We make an average of approximately 25 stops per service day. With that in mind, we have established routes that cover certain areas of our territory on certain days. Each customer will be assigned a route and service day of the week after their first service. We do our best to accommodate customer desires regarding scheduling but sometimes cannot.
Unfortunately with the volume of business we do it would be nearly impossible to schedule services for specific days and times. See also – How are services scheduled?
Our system can automatically send service advisement via email or text message the day prior to the scheduled service. These notices cannot indicate a time frame. Please call/email/text us if you desire to know a general time window for the service. We will do our best to provide the information. Sorry, we cannot place individual phone calls for this purpose. Once you are setup on a route, the service schedule is usually very regular and easy to know and usually the same portion of the day.
No, never a need to be home and we don’t want to bother the customer anyway. We try to leave everything just as we find it so no worries as long as we have access so please be sure to unlock gates as necessary.
We will always leave an invoice at the front door and send you an after service email. These contain the same information. Ultimately we will be moving to a paperless invoice system.
It is important that we have easy access to any treatment areas. Please be sure to unlock gates, remove/move any hindrances to the walkways and pick up toys and/or pet items and waste off the lawn.
Frustrating, but it does happen occasionally. In that event we will complete the service for the front lawn and leave the invoice with a note. We will do our best to return at a later date to complete the service in back at no extra charge. If it becomes a repeated challenge then we will have to assess an extra charge to return.
Lawn Doctor’s Lawn Maintainer Care service is everything a lawn needs to be healthy and attractive. It starts with proper fertilization along with weed control and crabgrass prevention. We can also address just about anything that arises affecting the lawn such as insect and disease damage. Finally, we employ emerging technologies to help lawns become more environmentally friendly and require less resources.
All lawns need proper care whether the customer does it, gardener does it or Lawn Doctor does. We just think we do it better than anybody. Why wouldn’t the customer want the best?
Not likely! The State of California requires a special license for what we do called Qualified Applicators License plus a Pesticide Business License. Ask to see ours. It is very rare for a gardener to go though the time, expense and continuing education required to maintain the necessary licenses. Accordingly, there would be a lack of knowledge, experience and access to the proper products to maintain the healthiest possible lawn. Most Lawn Doctor customers have gardeners for the lawn and landscape maintenance and us for the lawn care services. We complement each other very well with no or very little addition to overall cost.
Yes! Other services include: lawn aeration, Power Seeding to restore and establish new lawns, soil improvement and moisture retention, grub control and disease control, ant and mosquito treatments along with landscape and shrub services.
This is a very important question! Any product we may apply to your lawn is highly tested and regulated by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and subject to additional layers of scrutiny by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation. Enforcement of these regulations is handled by the County of San Diego. Laws mandate we adhere to product label instructions. These laws are designed to protect product applicators as well as consumers. Most labels instruct people and pets to stay off surfaces during treatment but may re-enter after any spray has dried and/or dust settled.
In a word, yes. However, these options generally come with reduced results and added cost. Our goal is always to produce the best results with minimum use of chemicals at a reasonable cost. We prefer to have a conversation about your goals for the lawn and your understanding of these products. With that we can share the facts along with pros and cons of the services options to customize a program that meets your needs.
No! The vast majority of our products are non-staining plus we blow off driveway and hard surfaces for a professional completion to the service.
There are a lot of factors involved in the health and appearance of any lawn. Weather, soil composition and nutrients, irrigation along with the wear and tear all affect the lawn. Our goal for each lawn is there is none better on the block and we are really good at delivering that goal. If a lawn isn’t reaching its full potential we work with the customer on steps needed to make improvements.
As green as we can make it depending on the type of grass and growing environment. Every lawn is better off with Lawn Doctor services. Also see – Can you give me a perfect lawn?
Usually a lawn starts greening up and weeds start dying in approximately one week. Some lawns require longer build up than others but they all start looking great before long.
Nature is very good at spreading weed seeds and no lawn is exempt. Also, weeds germinate at varying seasons and cycles. You can rest assured that Lawn Doctor will keep weeds at a minimum and be on the lookout for invasive weed species.
Maybe! Even so, nature is even better at spreading weed seeds around. Whatever the source, we will keep weeds to a minimum.
Perhaps never! Please refer to our Lawn Evaluation Form where we state “it takes up to two years to make a lawn 90% weed free”. There are annual weeds, biannual, biennial and perennial weeds. We need to work through seasons and cycles to see everything possible. Rest assured the greatest progress is made early on so you can be loving your lawn again soon. However, please be a little patient and know we are looking out for your lawn and will adjust treatment as needed going forward.
It is difficult to say exactly because the type of lawn along with growing environment and irrigation systems are all specific to each location. The general rule is to water infrequent but deep. When we assess a lawn we can then offer more detailed irrigation recommendations.
Quite possibly! Feedback from customers indicate we can achieve 10%-15% water savings with getting the lawn healthy and following our recommendations. Of course, if a customer is under irrigating to begin with then extra savings aren’t likely. Be sure to ask about our moisture retention programs that can achieve 30% – 50% savings in lawn irrigation.
Cultural practices are a very important component of any lawn maintenance program. These practices include mowing, trimming/edging and irrigation. If any of these practices are wrong the lawn will not achieve its full potential. We will advise each customer of deficiencies in any cultural practice so it can be corrected.
Absolutely! As a rule we find lawns edged way too aggressively. A popular method of edging seems to be “tapering” in which a lawn is trimmed at an angle from the inside of the lawn to the outside. Often this leads to lawn size reduction and exposed soil around the edges. The result is increased weeds and moisture loss. Neither is healthy for the lawn. The proper way to edge is vertically at the outer edges/hard surfaces.
It depends of the type of grass. The majority of lawns in our area are fescue grass. We find these lawns often mowed too short. The proper mow height is 3 inches. There are several reasons for this. 1) The taller mow height encourages deeper roots. 2) The taller grass plant becomes thicker by producing more grass blades (called tillers). 3) The taller and thicker grass plant shades the soil which reduces moisture loss and helps compete against weeds. 4) The grass plant is greenest at that mow height so the lawn is more beautiful. Perhaps the best way to verify mow height is to compare to the index finger which is approximately 3 inches. Easy!
We probably could but the extra time demand on our busy day make it difficult. However, we are happy to help assess the sprinkler coverage on your lawn. We very often discover irrigation problems during the service and make a note to inform you so you can arrange for repair. We also have very good sprinkler repair referrals, if desired.
Grasscycling or mulching lawn clippings simply means a bag is not used during mowing to capture and throw away the clippings. Most modern lawn mowers have the capability to recycle the grass clippings where they can return nutrients to the soil, reduce waste going to landfills and eliminate that smelly mess out of the green waste containers. Unfortunately most gardeners seem to bag these clippings so the customer can see their work. There are only benefits to grasscycling so we do recommend it and suggest customers require gardeners to adopt this practice.
Good question! We have found that many customers initially think they have crabgrass when it is actually any number of invasive grasses and weeds. It seems to be a “catch all” label for undesirable things in the lawn. In reality, crabgrass is an annual grassy weed that germinates during spring, matures during summer then dies during fall after dispersing seeds. Those seeds become the following year’s crabgrass. It gets worse and worse until stopped. Lawn Doctor service automatically controls crabgrass.
Another good question! Similar to crabgrass, lawn disease or fungus seems to be a “catch all” diagnosis for brown spots in a lawn. In reality we have very little incidents of lawn diseases in our area. And, if a bit of lawn disease appears it doesn’t always result in lawn damage. Interestingly, a lawn disease has to maintain certain conditions (i.e. high humidity and high night temperatures) to flourish. Once the conditions change, the disease ceases naturally. Honestly, the vast majority of “disease” calls we get turn out to be sprinkler coverage or irrigation system deficiencies.
Nutsedge is one of the most difficult invasive weeds to control in a lawn. What makes it such a challenge is an underground network of tubers called “nutlets”. These tubers are connected with horizontal stems called rhizomes. They cannot be physically removed and the extensive underground network makes chemical control a long term process. Fortunately some nutsedge plants are easier to control than others so we need to identify to determine the prognosis. While we can’t guarantee a quick solution or even complete eradication we can make great improvement over time and usually keep nutsedge from completely overgrowing your lawn.
Maybe! Lawn aeration is always good but not always the most important need. We will always offer a service for the greatest need and will provide the greatest result for your lawn.
Power Seeding is an exclusive Lawn Doctor process using proprietary machinery to repair and establish new lawns. We can do this at a fraction of the cost of sod installation. If the lawn is damaged there is no need to dig it up or start over. The customer simply follows the provided instructions for a period of time and the lawn is looking great again in a short period of time.
It is! However, it needs to be acknowledged that the customer has some responsibility in the successful outcome. If a properly functioning irrigation system is not maintained and/or irrigation instructions are not followed then the result will not be as good as initially desired. Also, sometimes wildlife (rabbits and squirrels, etc) damage is a challenge. We will identify and attempt to work through any deficiencies during our follow-up progress checks. We never give up and only ask the customer to do their best and have some patience in the process.