Sponsor Spotlight: Organic Lawns by LUNSETH

Organic Lawns by LUNSETH, a Blue Thumb partner, is an organic lawn care company specializing in high-quality commercial and residential landscaping services in the SW Twin Cities Metro Area. We recently sat down with co-owner Shay Lunseth to learn about the story behind Organic Lawns by LUNSETH and benefits of organic lawn care:


How did Organic Lawns by LUNSETH begin? 

Shay Lunseth: My husband (Eric Lunseth) started a traditional lawn mowing business in 2007 and soon began practicing organic lawn care at home. After our second child was born, I decided to join him and start an organic lawn care division of the business. I also went back to school to get a Masters in Horticulture at the University of Minnesota, focusing on organic turf management. Our organic lawn program has been active since 2010. 

Why organic?

SL: I’ve always been a fan of nature, wildlife, and insects. In every job I’ve had, I’ve always found a sustainable approach to it. It’s important to me to educate people on the bigger picture of the choices we make in our homes. I especially started thinking about the chemicals in our environment and how they affect us once I had small children. It’s present in all aspects of life and lawncare is an important place to consider it—I didn’t think about what we were doing on our lawn until we had pets and children. 

What exactly is organic lawn care? 

SL: Organic lawn care is an alternative to traditional chemical-based lawn care. We don’t hide any synthetic chemicals or fertilizers in our treatments. We look for OMRI-certified organic products. Organic lawn care improves soil quality and manages weeds naturally, leading to a lawn that is safe, sustainable, and environmentally friendly. 

What challenges come up when transitioning to organic lawn care and how does Organic Lawns by LUNSETH help folks through those challenges?

SL: People often ask if they will see results right away. It’s important to set expectations for the time frame. Give organic lawn care a try for at least three full growing seasons to see what it can do. The results you see—color, thickness of grass, weed control—depend on where you start from. A lawn with a lot of dirt or weeds will take longer to transition. Another hurdle we try to help people get over is weed control. We don’t see a small amount of weeds as a concern. Even after 3 years, having a tolerance for 5-10% weeds in your yard helps maintain microbial diversity and brings benefits to pollinators. 

What services does Organic Lawns by LUNSETH provide that other lawn care businesses don’t?

SL: We’re unique in that we don’t have many tools and recommend the most minimal and successful solution. We have our standard Organic Lawn Program and offer more support if a client’s lawn is struggling with additional challenges like bare spots, grub damage, or weeds. We differ from other companies in that we don’t hide synthetic chemicals and always include aeration and overseeding in the fall as part of our weed control method. 

Tell me about your recent acquisition of Organic Bob. What opportunities are you looking to expand into with the Organic Bob team?

SL: Bob Dahm (former owner of Organic Bob) has always been a friend of ours. We saw him speak at the Minnesota State Fair when we were starting the organic part of the company, and he encouraged us to go down that path. Since then, we’ve considered ourselves friendly competition, taking different approaches, but achieving the same things—soil health and environmentally-friendly lawns. Last year we were approached by Bob and his former partner looking for advice on labor and office challenges, and with Bob’s partner retiring, we came to the idea of acquiring Bob’s company. Working with Bob opens up the list of resources we have. The expertise in the office we have is greatly enriched by Bob and his team. Things we once said no to customers now we can start offering, including smaller landscaping projects and gardens.

Is there anything else you’d like to share about Organic Lawns by LUNSETH?

SL: If you’re considering going organic in your yard, you can start anytime, but it helps to start in early spring so you can get a handle on weed control for the whole season. We’re also happy to share with folks what they can do on their own and what products we use, especially as organic options have become more available in retail stores. The ultimate goal we want to help people achieve is to get away from our reliance on chemicals, bringing it out of our soil, water, and away from our homes.


Organic Lawns by LUNSETH is a Blue Thumb partner and sponsor. Thank you, Organic Lawns by LUNSETH, for your support!

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