Do you want a prettier garden? What could go wrong?
A lot of things! We don’t want to dampen your mood or your enthusiasm; but trust us, you couldn’t possibly pull off some of the beautiful gardens other have, all by yourself.
You could try; but if you want pretty results and fast, we recommend that you get someone to do the job.
How do you find the right person or company that best suits your taste? Getting a landscaper is almost as important as getting a building contractor because if you fail to get the right one, you might be spending more money on repairs for the next one year, or worse still you may have to start all over again.
We have helped to compile a kind of checklist that you can work with while deciding on the landscaper that suits you and your landscaping needs.
A little research goes a long way
Gather your landscaper options, as many as you can find then compare them to each other.
Be wary of the ridiculously low price options. The fact that it’s cheap does not mean it’s the right option.
You are supposed to care more about the experience of the company and search for references from past clients, especially those that had the same needs as yours. Make use of social media tools and the internet while you do your search.
Be aware of what you need
Before you go about searching for who you might be hiring for your landscaping, make sure you have a clear picture of what you want to be mapped out.
This would come in handy when you want to prune out your shortlist. Since you have what you want down on paper, show your plans to a prospective landscaper and watch their reaction.
Are they a team?
Some of the best landscaping results you’ve seen were never by a “one man” effort.
Most of the time, it comes as a result of real team efforts. A team that comprises of diversely talented individuals will do your garden a lot of good.
Any references you can check up on?
Asides from your initial research, ask those still remaining after you’ve successfully pruned your list about their education and personally ask them to provide you with a list of references that you can check up on by yourself.
Don’t laugh this off. Though it may sound extreme, you need to be aware that some mistakes are made while landscaping that could be totally out of place.
A tree could fall on your house; some extreme danger can be caused to your gas line and so on. Be sure that the landscaping design company that you are going for carries enough insurance to cover damages.
Consider your budget
Make sure that the landscape designer you pick meets your landscaping budget. Don’t overdo the finance aspect of this.
As much as you don’t want to go with the extremely cheap options, find a balance that does not sway too much in the high side.
Organic garden practices
Since we are all about caring for our environment, make it a high point in your search to find a company that maintains green landscaping practice. Here is a list of practices to watch out for while doing this
- Chemical avoidance: look for a company that use chemicals as a last resort and not the first choice. Keep in mind the chemicals are quite harmful to the downstream ecosystem.
- Plant selection: a company that goes for local plants that are drought resistant is a good choice.
- Soil preparation: go for a company that would rather use compost and other natural soil amendments in creating a strong growth environment.
- Grasscycling: while you are worried about a good lawn care practice, keep it in mind that keeping the lawn clippings on the lawn for a natural, slow release of nitrogen back to the lawn, is a good green practice. Watch out for a company that does this.
- Water conservation: go for a company that can install and maintain water-efficient irrigation systems equipped with weather-based controllers.
While a landscaper can have all the needed landscaping skills, if they lack the ability to talk with you and understand your specific needs, you just made your bed with loads of frustration. You might want to consider these basic personality traits;
- Ability to grasp your needs
- Readiness to adapt to your taste
- Great communication skills.
Don’t rush it
You are going to be working closely with your landscaper; you will be relying on them for advice. Take your time and don’t settle on a company until you’ve explored all your options.
Finally, understand that the choice of a landscape contractor is one of the first steps to take in the process of having the property you’ve always wanted.
Making the right choice also goes a long way in the value and quality of the finished product, and in your eventual satisfaction. Here are a few final questions to ask yourself before writing your retainer cheque.
- Were they able to satisfactorily answer all my questions?
- Have they demonstrated their experience and qualification to my taste?
- Are they friendly, will I love working with them?
- Would they offer a responsive customer service during and after the installation?
If you were able to answer yes to all these questions, there is a great possibility you have the right ones there. You can put your mind to rest, sit back and enjoy the process of getting a beautiful home in a bit.