April 2017

Diversifying with demo work

May 10, 2017By
Photo: J. Barker Landscaping Co.

One landscape company found new work amid the foreclosure crisis. In 2008, the economic downturn left many landscape business owners wondering if they would survive. As businesses and homeowners cut back on expenses, landscaping services often got the axe. Many companies were looking for ways to diversify. Around this time, J. Barker Landscaping Co. in Bedford, Ohio, found itself in... read more

Big Picture: Making a splash

May 8, 2017By
Grunder Landscaping

Location: Tipp City, Ohio Company: Grunder Landscaping, Miamisburg, Ohio Photo credit: Grunder Landscaping The clients wanted to add a pool, spa, waterfall and a pool house to allow for pool parties without access to their home. They also wanted to maintain as much lawn as possible and keep pool equipment out of sight and earshot. In the past, the company... read more

Step by Step: How to create fire-resistant landscapes

May 5, 2017By
Step by Step: How to create fire-resistant landscapes

Contractors in regions that are prone to wildfires can use proper planning and smart design to help protect their clients’ homes. Begin by creating defensible space around the property by designing the landscape to act as a barrier to impeding flames. Any plants near the home should be widely spaced out and low-growing to prevent the spread of flames from... read more

To fee or not to fee?

May 1, 2017By
Photo: ©istock.com/feuers

Design fee proposals aren’t created equally. Here’s one design expert’s approach. I’m still amazed when I get pushback from landscape designers and contractors about design fees. They either won’t charge a design fee because their competitors don’t, don’t want to lose the installation over a design fee, lack the confidence to charge a design fee or all of the above.... read more

4 interview questions you must ask

April 28, 2017By
Contract. Photo: ©istock.com/AndreyPopov

Life is all about choices. In every moment, we make choices. Do this or do that. Go here or go there. It’s endless. And every choice produces a logical outcome, a result. The most important choice we make in business is who gets hired. When you hire the right people, you create a win/win/win situation. You win, your employees win... read more

Not your grandfather’s diesel engines

April 24, 2017By
Photo: Grasshopper

Some contractors are recognizing the benefits of diesel mowers and adding them to their fleets. Dillon Schlimme keeps his four-mower fleet up to date by purchasing a new machine every year. Two years ago, when his equipment dealer suggested he try out a diesel mower, Schlimme initially thought it was just an attempt to sell him more expensive equipment. But... read more