Recap of landscaping with Exmark, Graze, and more

Photo: Exmark

Exmark celebrates the 25th anniversary of its Lazer Z commercial zero-turn ride-on mower by releasing its latest edition of the mower along with a new stand-on aerator and seeder.

The company states that what started as one series in 1995 has grown to four series and numerous models for 2021, each available in different cutting widths, fuel options and configurations. According to Exmark, they offer both gasoline and diesel-powered Lazer Z models with decks that can cut up to 96 inches per pass.

Exmark says it continues to innovate based on customer feedback. These innovations for 2021 include the updated 96-inch Lazer Z Diesel and the exclusive Exmark Tractus non-air-powered tires.

On the lawn care side, the Z Turf Equipment range will be expanded to include a new stand-on aerator and slicer seed drill model for 2021.

The company says the mid-size Z-Aerate 30 (30-inch ventilation width) and compact Z-Aerate 24 (24-inch ventilation width) models will be added to the Z Turf Equipment line in 2021.

According to Exmark, both new Z-Aerate models have a free-floating center tine design that allows trees and flower beds to be ventilated. The company says an adjustable negative pressure of up to 1,200 pounds allows the machines to pull plugs up to five inches deep, and intuitive controls are similar to a zero-turn mower.

The company states that the two-drive design powers both wheels for maneuverability and traction on any non-rotary drive lawn. An available seed drill attachment enables an operator to aerate and overseed properties at the same time.

According to Exmark, the Z-Seed cutting machine is a durable, easy-to-use machine that does three jobs with each pass – scarifying, coring and overseeding. The company says the hydrostatic drive and powered reverse make the machine incredibly easy to use.

The company says the large-diameter mixer regulates the flow of seeds based on the speed of the soil to ensure efficient and even seed delivery, and that long-lasting carbon steel blades unclog the existing lawn, while the 40-pound hopper works big with less Refills done.

Graze introduces the next generation of autonomous commercial mowing

Graze recently unveiled its new model of lawn mower, which is expected to hit the market by 2021.

The company says the development of the first Graze is completely autonomous, electric lawn mower Expands the design to increase efficiency and maintenance speed for medium-sized to large commercial lawns, improve the cutting blades to perfect trimming accuracy, add new sensor functions to increase safety, improve GPS-based mapping and image processing, and optimize intelligent and applicable Insights advanced machine learning capabilities.

According to analyst reports from Graze, the US had sales of $ 101.7 billion in 2020, while commercial landscaping (maintenance and general services) was forecast to account for between 40 and 60 percent of all US landscaping. The company says commercial lawn mowing has remained an undisturbed industry.

According to Graze, a first porotype model was introduced and artificial intelligence and robotics were applied to create a fully autonomous commercial lawnmower. The company says this model will expand the design with streamlined features and incorporate feedback from local industry leaders to bring a sustainable solution to the commercial marketplace.

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“We are living in a new era of artificial intelligence that will transform age-old industries,” said John Vlay, CEO of Graze Mowing. “Robotics and automation open up a world of efficiency, and when you apply intelligence, traditional models can be completely reinvented. I’ve been in commercial landscaping for more than 35 years and I can safely say that we’ve built a lawnmower that brings a new level of quality and safety to the market, and we’re doing it sustainably. We are excited to introduce the future of commercial lawn mowing with our new Graze commercial mower. “

The company says the new model comes with a longer battery life. According to Graze, the company has developed its new model to consistently learn and apply data through an intuitive user experience, improve lawn care and create new optimization opportunities for fleet operators. The company says machine learning, coupled with computer vision and a system of sensors, enables the Graze commercial lawnmower to map construction sites, plan and execute mowing paths, remove obstacles and dangerous slopes (e.g. trees, terrain, people, etc. ) while continuously collecting and applying data to further improve aesthetic quality and efficiency.

Powered entirely by electrical and solar panel technology, this model allows operators to maximize revenue by using mowers in the evenings, according to Graze.

The company says current fleet operators manage 500 to 1,000 mowers, and replacing a fleet of 1,000 mowers with Graze’s electric mowers would mean removing more than 37 million cars from the road.

Great Lakes Dredging uses Ditch Doctor

According to the Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Company, the rivers and lakes division recently encountered sediment-filled trenches and pockets of stagnant water on a large dredging project in Argenta, Illinois.

Because of this, according to the company, a one-of-a-kind essay called the Ditch Doctor has proven correct.

According to Great Lakes, it was hired by the city of Decatur in April 2020 to dredge sediments from the 3,093-acre Lake Decatur. The aim was to increase the storage capacity for the local drinking water supply. The contractor completed this work in November 2019 and returned to the Oakley Settling Basin (OSB) in April to complete the drainage ditches and landscaping. According to Great Lakes, the trenches were cut out in mid-2019, but have since been refilled due to the viscosity of the material.

“The job here was to put in drain tiles and toss them away so there would be no stagnant water and over the years it would dry out and return to farmland,” says Tim Cantwell, project leader. “We had about 6,000 feet of trenches cut around the perimeter, in addition to cutting some new trenches that went into the standing water pockets.”

Photo: ransom notesPhoto: ransom notes

Cantwell recalls the process of finding the right trench maintenance tool. According to Great Lakes, it had seen an attachment similar to the Ditch Doctor in Louisiana before April, but it was too big and had to mount a hydraulic drive unit on the back of the excavator.

The site manager conducted an Internet search and came across footage of the Ditch Doctor and contacted Ransome Attachments of New Jersey. The Ditch Doctor was smaller, lighter and could be mounted directly on an excavator.

According to Ransome, a 22-inch Ditch Doctor came with a wet scroll case in May 2020 and Great Lakes mounted it on a Cat 324DL long range excavator and performed more than 2,500 feet of trench maintenance. The trenches averaged four feet deep and ten feet wide with varying sediment depths.

The company says the removable wet scroll case was chosen because it would allow Great Lakes to dig in up to three feet of water. Most of the trenches contained a filthy combination of clays and organic materials and puddle water with minimal vegetation above and rocks that had settled below. According to Great Lakes, the alternative, a dry wheeled suitcase, is best for trenches with a foot or less of water.

According to Great Lakes, the traditional method was also used, a ditch bucket that allowed side-by-side comparison. The contractor has traditionally used a pump to drain the trench as much as possible before digging it. However, according to Great Lakes, a custom adapter plate was made for the quick coupler so changing attachments required switching between 70 and 80 millimeters pin.

At its core, the company says the Ditch Doctor is a trench maintenance device, and the bucket work was required when Great Lakes came across virgin clay while digging new trenches.

“Most of the work – about 80 percent of it – was in previously excavated trenches that were filled in,” says Cantwell. “The trench doctor worked really well because he only picked up the sediment that filled these trenches and immediately blew it out again.”

“If you have the right conditions, it (Ditch Doctor) is at least twice as fast as digging it with a bucket,” says Cantwell, noting that having enough water to slurry the material is critical. “It did a really good job of removing trenches that had just filled in with the sediment and blowing it out there like a snow blower.”

The company says one of the advantages of the Ditch Doctor over traditional methods is that it doesn’t require on-site evacuation. Great Lakes said the Ditch Doctor was used to project material as far as possible from the trench into the retention basin, and the speed of the Ditch Doctor could be adjusted to determine the projection distance.

According to Cantwell, the projection distance was mainly controlled by the thickness of the sediment and the water content.

“If there was a lot of water, you could throw it 25 to 30 feet,” he says, adding that most of the material is in such a moist form that it levels itself within 24 hours. “And sometimes you were in thicker, heavier material with more sound and it would project 10 to 15 feet.”

Despite the fact that Great Lakes claims to have entered into a hire purchase agreement, the company ultimately decided not to buy the Ditch Doctor because no fiscally responsible contractor would want a device idle.

“We have never used anything like this before,” says Cantwell. “It’s a unique device. So if you keep working on it, it’s fine. When we get a future project that fits right, we know it will be available from Ransome. “

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