Customer Service Questions
1. How will I know when you are coming to perform service?
You will receive a notifiation in the morning on the day we are coming to perform service.
Due to the unpredictable nature of the weather, we do not schedule in advance. We dispatch jobs for each crew in the morning. You will receive a text or email notification (whichever you signed up for). This notification will tell you that a crew is on their way, and what service they will be performing. You will also receive a notification after the service is complete.
You can update your communication preferences (including how you receive dispatch and scheduling notifications) by clicking on the communications preferences link in the email you received when you signed up for service titled "Welcome to Terra Mira!".
Please Note: On occassion, we will dispatch jobs later in the day due to scheduling changes (e.g. we have decided to work a longer day today to account for bad weather forecast tomorrow).
2. Do you have a referral program?
Anyone you refer who signs up for recurring mow & trim service will earn you a referral credit. Both you and the person you refer will receive a $25 credit to your account. Refer as many people as you want, there are no limits! Please note the person you refer must be in our service area.
3. How do I provide feedback on your work?
About a day after each service, you will receive a one-click survery via email asking you to rate your service from 1 to 5 stars.
There is also an option to leave comments about the service, if you choose. This is the best way to provide feedback about each service.
You can always email us at email@example.com or call us at 518.337.0501.
4. Should I really respond to the quality survey every week?
Yes, we ask all of our customers to respond to this one-click survey after each service.
Our crews have specific performance goals to meet each day and week, and the most important of these goals is to earn an average minimum star-rating from the clients they service. So, your response to this survey helps determine crew bonuses. This keeps your lawn crew motivated to always do their absolute best to earn a five-star rating from you on each service. This also is the best way to notify us if there is a problem, so we can get to work fixing it ASAP.
5. Can I add-on a task while you're on my property?
We can not accomodate requests to perform additional out-of-scope work while on your property.
Sometimes, you may have something extra you'd like done while a landscaping crew is on your property (like weeding, picking up debris, etc). Our crews are trained to perform the task you hired us for thoroughly and efficiently. They have performance goals they are trying to reach each day. If you have other work you would like done, we will be more than happy to provide a quote to you (click here), but we can not accomodate requests to perform additional out-of-scope work while on your property.
6. Should I tip the crew?
Tips are never expected, but you may tip the crew if you wish.
The best way to tip your crew is to give them a five-star rating on the feedback survey. Because this feedback is tied directly to crew bonuses, its like tipping your crew—on our dime!
7. What if I'm unhappy with my service?
Let us know immediately, by either replying to the one-click survey, emailing us, or calling us at 518.337.0501.
We strive to communicate job expectations clearly and thoroughly with our customers, and we hold ourselves accountable to these expectations. If we determine a service was not performed properly, we will send out a Rescue Tech to fix the problem as soon as possible, at no charge to you.
If there was a miscommunication about job expectations, we will talk with you and do our absolute best to find a solution that works for everyone.
8. What area do you service?
Here is a map of our service area:
General Property Care Questions
9. How often should I water my lawn?
The short answer is about 1-2 times per week, for 45-60 minutes per irrigation zone. If you notice pooling water in an area that doesn't go away within 30 minutes of irrigation, reduce the watering time for that specific zone.
Many people set their irrigation systems up to water every other day for 10-20 minutes. This wets the top 1-2" of soil. Because this is where the water is, this is where the grass develop most of its root system. When it's very hot and dry, the top 1-2" of soil is the first thing to dry out.
By watering frequently you are training your turf to be very intolerant of dry weather. By watering one to 2 times per week (once per week for soils with a lot of organic material, twice per week for sandy soils) for a longer period, you are wetting the soil several inches down. This causes the grass to strengthen its root system several inches below the surface of the soil. When the weather is very hot and dry, it takes much longer for the lower layers of soil to dry out. This produces a more drought-tolerant and healthier turf.
If you'd like help setting an irrigation schedule for your lawn, just let us know. We will gladly provide you with an irrigation plan tailored specifically your property at no charge.
10. Should I install an irrigation system?
We recommend irrigation for all lawns that experience drought dormancy.
If your lawn typically looks brown in the hottest parts of the summer, you may want to consider an irrigation system.
11. I have irrigation, why does my lawn still get brown?
The solution to this is to water 3-5 times per day for about 10 minutes during very hot weather
In the northeast we have cool-season grasses. Even if they're getting plenty of water, they can still go dormant when the temperatures get very high. The trick is to prevent the soil temperature from getting too high. High soil temperatures will cause cool-season grasses to go dormant, even if they have enough water. To fix this, change your irrigation settings (or ask us to) to water more frequently, and during the day. This is the one exception to the rule of thumb to water 1-2 times per week.
If you don't want to do this, that's fine. Your grass will likely go dormant, and then green up again when temperatures moderate. However, please note that during extended periods of very high heat, your grass can die due to elevated soil temperatures. If you're concerned this may be happeneing, immediately increase your irrigation during the heat of the day.
Note: There many possible causes to a browning lawn. The issue described above is the most common. If you suspect something else is going on with your lawn (disease, pest, etc), let us know right away so we can advise you on the best course of action.
Mow & Trim Questions
12. What height will you cut my lawn?
Between 3.25" and 3.75".
We follow the guidelines put forth by Cornell University College of Agriculture on turf care. You can learn more about that by clicking here.
In the Northeast, lawns are composed of cool-season grasses. There are several varieties of cool-season grasses, the most common are Kentucky Bluegrass, Tall and Fine Fescue, and Perennial Ryegrass. Unless you sought out a specific variety of grass, your lawn is almost certainly a combination of these varieties.
These varieties of grass thrive at 3.25" to 3.75". Our crews are trained to adjust cutting height to best accomodate the changing seasons and weather trends. We will occasionally cut higher than 3.75" by customer request or if the crew leader deems this beneficial and necessary for your lawn.
13. Can you cut my lawn shorter?
Maybe. If we're already cutting your turf at 3.25", we won't cut it any shorter than that.
The bottom line is that all cool season grasses are healthiest when cut between 3.25" and 3.75". Cutting it shorter is not only stressful on your turf, which makes it more vulnerable to pest and disease, it also lets more sunlight hit the surface of the ground, which promotes weed growth. When grass is tall enough to shade the ground, new weed seeds that sprout are starved of sunlight and die.
Remember, for your turf to stay healthy, you should ideally be cutting no more than 1/3 of the hight of the grass off. So if your grass is 4" to 5", cutting it down to 3.5" is ideal. If your grass is 4" to 5" and you ask us to cut it down to 2", what you're asking us to do is stress out your turf.
You may be thinking to yourself "But what about my local golf course?" Putting greens and fairways are seeded with a specific variety of grass that can tolerate being cut very short. The most common of which is Penncross Bentgrass. While this variety can tolerate being cut short, it also requires much more maintenance. In order to stay green at this height, it is cut roughly every day depending on weather, and a very extensive fertilization program is in place. This is not practical for a typical residential lawn.
If you have any further questions about how we care for your lawn, just click on the "Contact" link at the top of the page.
14. Can I request a specific day for service?
We can not accommodate day-specific mowing requests.
In order to keep our pricing competitive and our quality exceptional, we use software to optimize our routing and logistics. This means your property will be added to our schedule in the place that results in the least amount of driving.
Our clients greatly value our reliability. We're able to deliver reliable weekly service because we don't make day-specific commitments. Weather is always a factor that has to be worked around. Sometimes it's hot and dry, sometimes it's wet and rainy, but you will never be left wondering why we didn't show up to perform service, because we will always show up.
15. What day of the week will my lawn be cut?
We schedule all mow & trim services between Monday and Thursday.
We do this because in order to work around the weather, we must have Friday and Saturday available as make-up days for weeks with poor weather. While you will be scheduled on the same day every week, please understand that we are not able to commit to a specific day.
Most of the time your lawn will be mowed on the same day. In the event we're not able to service your property on the scheduled day, we will mow no sooner than 6 days, and no more than 8 days after the previous mowing. On very, very rare occasions (generally caused by extended periods of very bad weather) we will deviate from this rule.
16. What if my lawn doesn't need to be cut?
We will not skip a mowing unless the crew leader determines that mowing will be harmful to your lawn.
Occasionally if the weather has been hot and dry for an extended period of time, and your lawn does not have irrigation, it may not need to be cut. If you would like us to skip your service on a given week, please let us know as soon as possible by replying to the dispatch notification. If you wait until the crew arrives on-site, you will be charged for the mowing.
17. What happens if my yard is too wet to mow?
We will skip areas of your yard that are too wet to mow.
If you yard is too wet, and the crew leader is concerned about damaging your turf with our equipment, those sections of your lawn will be skipped. We will mow these areas on the next visit to your property, so long as they have sufficiently dried out. If an area stays wet for many weeks and we can't get our equipment on it, we may bill you hourly to service those areas with a string-trimmer. We will get your approval before doing this.
In most cases, we will be able to mow the wet section normally the following week (or sometimes two weeks later). This does take us on average 55%-70% longer due to mowing more slowly and emptying the grass collection bags more frequently. We do not charge extra when "catching up" on a wet section of lawn in this manner. Because of this, we do not pro-rate your service when skipping wet sections.
We generally only have to charge extra for areas that have been wet for multiple weeks and need to be serviced with a string trimmer, as this is a very time consuming process.
We are also more than happy to refer you to a contractor who can help solve water drainage issues.
18. Do you mow & trim in the rain?
We do mow and trim in the rain when necessary.
Due to the nature of weather in the northeast, we cannot stay on schedule if we don't sometimes mow in the rain. We put freshly sharpened blades on our mowers every day. Our mowers are much more powerful than residential mowers and provide a great quality cut, even in the rain. We do exercise extreme caution when it is raining, paying special attention not to damage the turf, and we do stop mowing if rain is particularly heavy.
If you would like us to skip your property when it's raining, just reply to the dispatch notification and let us know. Please note that if we are in your neighborhood on a given day, we cannot reschedule you for another day that same week. We will cut your lawn the next week, when we're in your neighborhood again.
19. Do you offer every other week mow & trim service?
Our mow and trim service is only available as a weekly service.
Accounting & Billing Questions
20. Do I have to sign a contract?
No, all of our services are post-paid and billed after service completion.
You can cancel service at any time. We will earn your business every time we show up!
21. Can I pay with cash or check?
The only payment arrangement we offer is credit or debit card.
Once you put a card on file, we will charge your card after each service is complete, and you will receive a PAID invoice via email.
22. How do I add a credit card to my account?
23. What about credit card security?
We keep your card information secure. Here's how:
Credit cards offer some awesome benefits. Convenience, fraud protection, points, miles, cash back, and other rewards. In today's market, credit card security is extremely important, and we take it very seriously at Terra Mira. We do not store your credit card information with our company. We use a credit card processor (Bluepay) who keeps your credit card information on our behalf. Bluepay is used by some of the biggest brands you trust like Southwest Airlines, Clif Bar, Susan G. Komen Foundation, and many others.
Bluepay adheres to industry standards for keeping card information secure (a standard called PCI-DSS). Once we input your card information it is tokenized (a process that keeps it away from hackers) and sent securely encrypted to Bluepay. They store the card information on our behalf. We can only see the last four digits and the expiration date. This is the same credit card information that gets printed on a receipt from the grocery store when you pay by credit card.
So, no-one at Terra Mira has access to your card information after we input it. Even if your own account (or our system) is compromised, they can not access your card information, because it's not stored with us. If you have any questions about the security of your card information, please don't hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 518.588.8835