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Step by Step: How to identify trees

January 14, 2019By
Leaves (Illustration: David Preiss)

There are an estimated 23,000 different kinds of trees in the world. While it’s impossible to know them all, it’s important for landscape contractors to be familiar with the varieties found in their parts of the country to ensure proper treatment and care. To begin the identification process, contractors should thoroughly inspect the tree, making note of its prominent features,... read more

Big Picture: Indoor living in the great outdoors

January 14, 2019By
Outdoor living area (Photo: Dry Branch Photography)

Location: Decatur, Ga. Company: Plants Creative Landscapes The homeowner wanted multiple outdoor themed rooms, connected with seamless sightlines. Bluestone, painted brick, concrete countertops and steel were used to unify the spaces. A bluestone patio connected to the home forms the main living area and features an outdoor kitchen, dining area and fireplace lounge. The recreation area off the patio offers... read more

Electric avenue

January 11, 2019By
Man with battery-powered blower (Photo: American Green Zone Alliance)

Dan Delventhal, founder of MowGreen in Fairfield, Conn., has been using battery-powered landscape equipment since 2006 in an effort to lighten his environmental impact. Dan Mabe, former owner of The Greenstation in Los Angeles, used electric equipment because he says it’s much quieter than gas versions. David Mitchell, owner of Mitchell Landscaping in Amarillo, Texas, began converting his gas-powered handheld... read more

Dust off your safety plan

January 7, 2019By
Hand holding dust (Photo: iQ Power Tools)

Landscape contractors who work with hardscape materials are taking note of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Respirable Crystalline Silica standard, which affects the type of equipment and practices they use on the job site. Crystalline silica is a mineral found in materials like stone, concrete, brick, sand and mortar. Respirable particles are created from the crystalline silica when... read more

The ‘what’ and the ‘how’

December 26, 2018By
Strategy gears (Photo: iStock.com/EtiAmmos)

Strategy is the “how.” Strategy equals the specific plans for hitting your goals and achieving your vision. The term comes from military use: The plans for defeating the enemy and winning the war represent the “strategy.” As you look forward, it’s essential to develop or revisit your organization’s vision or picture of success. The vision acts as the destination point... read more

Prep your family biz for the next gen

December 13, 2018By
Team meeting (Photo: iStock.com/Jirapong Manustrong)

It’s estimated that family-owned businesses comprise up to 90 percent of all businesses in North America. Many are not adequately preparing to transition leadership to the next generation. According to a recent survey conducted by professional services firm PwC, 43 percent of family businesses had no succession plans in place. This may explain why only one-third of all family businesses... read more