Proud to look back on Landscape Management

September 16, 2012 -  By

As I researched Landscape Management’s and the Green Industry’s joint histories for our 50th anniversary issue, an unassuming, folded-in-half piece of paper floated out of an old bound volume of back issues of the magazine.
Hurried and on deadline, I almost stuffed it back in without looking at it, thinking it was nothing but someone else’s research notes from long ago. Instead, I opened it.

“Landscape Management Management History” the document’s title read. As I scanned the list of editors and publishers from LM’s past, some of the names jumped out at me.

› James Nelson. The son of a pesticide manufacturer, Nelson became editor of our sister magazine Pest Control (now Pest Management Professional) in 1948. He launched LM’s predecessor Weeds and Turf in July 1962, serving as publisher until 1967. (For more on our evolution, see page 30.) PMP is inducting Nelson into its Hall of Fame this year, largely due to his role in launching industry bible “Truman’s Scientific Guide to Pest Management Operations” and a related Purdue University correspondence course.

› Bob Earley. Having served LM in various capacities in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, Earley was present in June 1979 when 23 lawn care professionals gathered at the Cincinnati-South Holiday Inn to discuss forming a national association. From that meeting, the Professional Lawn Care Applicators of America (PLCAA, now part of the Professional Landcare Network or PLANET) was born.

› Jerry Roche. Chief editor of LM from 1985 until 1995, Roche is one of the five founders of the Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association.

› Ron Hall and Sue (Gibson) Porter. Hall reported for LM and its former sister tabloid Lawn Care Industry for more than two decades, serving as LM’s editor-in-chief from 2002 to 2008. He and Porter ushered LM through a transition in 1999 from a general turf book covering golf and sports turf to one focused solely on serving the needs of landscape and lawn care businesses.

It’s powerful to see the names of the people who’ve done the work you do many years before you began to do it. I take pride in adding my name and that of our new ownership, North Coast Media, to LM’s management history list.

The more things change
Much like your businesses, our job—business-to-business publishing—has changed a lot since 1962, the year Nelson realized there was an opportunity to publish specialized information for those in the new field of applying pesticides to outdoor environments. But, also like you, the reason we do our job hasn’t changed one bit.

I’m sure the men and women whose bylines have appeared in LM before mine would agree that the most gratifying thing about being a trade magazine editor is hearing that something you reported on improved a reader’s business or life.

I recently received an email from a longtime reader who said just that. Even though LM first made a difference to him long before I was around, I appreciated and was encouraged by his note just the same.

Arthur Hathcock, landscape agronomist and former owner of Metroscape, a Washington, D.C., area environmental services and landscape firm, wrote to tell me that in 1976 he was given the Manager of the Year Award by our predecessor, Weeds, Trees & Turf.

“The award was two-fold,” Hathcock says. “1). I got my photo in the magazine and a minor write-up, and 2). I was given an inscribed pewter desk paperweight with all the pertinent information. I still have the paperweight.

“I thank you for maintaining the integrity of the magazine, its spirit and its relevance. Please keep up the good work, and realize you are accomplishing more than you probably realize for the future of young and impressionable land care professionals.”

Thank you, Arthur, and all of our readers, for giving us a reason to do what we do.

Photo: Stuart Miles Freedigitalphotos.net

Marisa Palmieri

About the Author:

Marisa Palmieri is an experienced Green Industry editor who's won numerous awards for her coverage of the landscape and golf course markets from the Turf & Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA), the Press Club of Cleveland and the American Society of Business Publication Editors (ASBPE). In 2007, ASBPE named her a Young Leader. She graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism, cum laude, from Ohio University’s Scripps School of Journalism.

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