Landscape & Irrigation

March 2017

Landscape and Irrigation is read by decision makers throughout the landscape and irrigation markets — including contractors, landscape architects, professional grounds managers, and irrigation and water mgmt companies and reaches the entire spetrum.

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14 March 2017 Landscape and Irrigation development programs. We strive to bring innovative solutions to the market, and the best way to do that is by listening to customers and truly understanding how to meet their needs. — Ruben Pena, product marketing manager, zero-turn mower, John Deere Landscape professionals are looking for durability and performance. Ease of use is very important for landscape companies with larger fl eets, as their operator pool is transient. As more and more landscape professionals are adding Kubota equipment to their fl eets, the feedback we get is that their crew prefers Kubota equipment over competitive equipment. Kubota's product development and validation process allows us to thoroughly test equipment in all terrains and grass types. All of our product improvements are informed by our dealers and customers who are part of the process. Kubota's latest innovation in outdoor power equipment — Aerodynamic Cutting System technology — was a result of insights gained from landscape professionals. This new technology allows for 16 percent less demand on the engine torque and 27 percent better ground speed for enhanced productivity. — Rajesh Joshi, Kubota product marketing director, turf A Steiner is a unique tractor that withstands the test of time. Our professional customers rely on it heavily, and many of them build their businesses around it. Because of that, durability is key. They need it to thrive in all conditions and all seasons. — Craig Rohde, marketing manager for Schiller Grounds Care (Steiner) The feedback we receive the most is typically related to reliability, performance and specifi c applications. Every landscape professional is faced with unique needs, and wants a mower specifi c to their own tasks. We offer a wide variety of options and continue to expand these options. We also see the desire for low maintenance. Many of our mowers now only require engine oil, fi lter and blade maintenance during the mowing season. — Ed Wright, director of research and development, Wright Manufacturing L&I: What advice would you provide to landscape/lawn care professionals who are looking to add to their mower fl eet for the 2017 season? A good thing to remember is that it's not just about the equipment. It's important to make sure that landscape professionals have a good relationship with their dealer, and that they fi nd someone who can support their needs, whether it's fi xing their equipment in a timely manner, having parts on hand when they need them, or having a loaner program. Those are factors that can help immensely when something goes wrong. As far as buying advice, we always encourage landscape professionals to spend time in the seats of multiple zero-turns, and do d e m o s w h e n e v e r possible. Put the equipment to the test yourself. Don't just allow a dealer to sell you into a brand blindly. Instead, do your own research and make sure that you really evaluate the products. Most brands have demo programs to ensure that customers are able to do this, so take advantage of that. — Matt Medden, Ariens Company VP of marketing There are so many different ways to fi nd commercial mower specifi cations, competitive analysis, and professional landscaper product experiences through the Internet, social media, etc. However, the best way to compare commercial mowers is sitting in the seat itself. We understand the landscapers' needs, and build our products as they would. We use the word "confi dence" in our warranty program, but we also build and design our mowers with confi dence. We are confi dent in our products and we want you to be as well. — Ron Scheffl er, product manager, BOB-CAT The new PRO Z Series has some of the strongest specifi cations in the industry today — like triple-7-gauge steel cutting decks and high-horsepower Kawasaki engines paired with high-torque Parker transmissions. In spring 2017, we are offering aggressive fi nancing, fl eet and bid discounts, military rebates and up to $400 off select models. — Allen Baird, professional product manager, Cub Cadet A good dealer will help you pick the correct mower. They will also be there for you as service needs arise. — Brad Unruh, director of product strategy, Excel Industries (Hustler) Buy quality up front. Downtime is revenue lost, so an investment in more durable mowers with reduced maintenance requirements can make a signifi cant impact on the bottom line. Increasing fuel effi ciency is a great way to improve profi tability. Gas prices are forecast to increase, so investing in more fuel- effi cient mowers is a prudent long-term strategy. While it's true an EFI-equipped mower will be slightly more PH O T O P R O VI DED BY JO H N DEE R E SPECIAL FEATURE

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