Our Lawn Care Business...
Green Boys LawnCare, Inc. is a full-service lawn care provider residing in Topeka, Kansas. The family-run business was started in 2006 by Jeremiah and Sarah Richards, and continues to operate. Jeremiah oversees Field Operations, and Sarah runs the Office. Jeremiah holds a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering Degree from The University of Missouri - Rolla (now known as Missouri S&T). Sarah holds a Bachelors of Science Degree in Education from Emporia State University. Jeremiah & Sarah have (6) children: Cecilia, Abby, Ben, Izzy, Ruth, and Esther ranging in age from 2 to 14.
The Green Guard...
It wasn't long into the mowing business that we could see the need for something to block the grass clippings that can chute 10+ feet out of a commercial mower. We experimented with full-time mulch plates, but the mower would bog down in thick grass, and leave a line of clippings everywhere we mowed. We then tried attaching the mulch plates to the OEM supplied guard, so they could be manually swung open or closed. It became cumbersome to stop the blades and open or close the mulch plate every time conditions changed, so after a while they were rarely used. We looked at some of the products on the market, but were concerned that their blade blockers would keep us from installing a bagger attachment when we needed to for the occasional customer, or when leaf cleanup season hit. Well long story short - life got busy, and while it always remained in the back of our minds, the idea got shelved for several years. We dealt with the grass clippings the best way we could: watching our mowing direction, and blowing them out of mulch beds as needed.
...Fast forward to this past summer. We purchased a used Exmark Stander mower that came with an OEM supplied rubber blade blocker. The crew that used the mower really liked it, and started asking why our other mowers didn't have something like that. We considered purchasing them for our other mowers, but found one major road block. The design of the Exmark blade blocker would not allow us to install a bagger (~3-5% of our customers request bagging.) The crew that used the mower would always have to switch to a different mower whenever they bagged. Other issues included:
1.) The rubber guard was held on by small diameter screws, that the crew managed to tear out the rubber and detach the guard a couple times.
2.) The lever to open or close the guard was mounted a little low on the mower, requiring you to bend over to operate it.
3.) The $400 price tag seemed a little steep (though we would have gladly paid it for the amount of time and customer complaints it would have saved, had it not been for the other issues.)
This experience re-invigorated me to design my own Chute Blocker. So, when the lawn care slowed down in the fall I got to work. I decided to stay with rubber like the Exmark, so the guard would have some give to it that steel doesn't have. I went with motor-operated, because I wanted it to be easy and convenient to operate. Of course, I had to make it so that it swung completely out of the way and allowed me to use my bagger attachment.
The result of years of experience mowing myself, managing crews, and months of work - has produced 'The Green Guard'! What I hope you will find to be - the best and most versatile OCDC on the market, at a reasonable price!