So you’ve decided on improving your outdoor space and choose to look for a landscaping company to help you take care transform your outdoor space this season. How can you make sure that you’re hiring a reliable team that will get the job completed to your satisfaction? Our team gives you pointers to make the process easy:
1. Do you offer insurance or warranty on your products?
Will the team be installing plants or doing hardscaping? What kind of warranty do they have on their products? What does it cover? Make sure that you consider how your outdoor space will look in the long-term.
2. How long have you been in the business?
A company that has been in business longer is likely a more reliable company with more experience under their belt.
3. Knowledge-testing questions.
These will differ depending on your specific project, but you’ll want to make sure that whoever you hire has good general knowledge about horticulture and its applications in your geographical area. Below are some questions you can use:
Question: What is the best time to fertilize turf?
Answer: spring and fall fertilization is recommended while temperatures are low and grounds are soft
Question: What is the difference between annual and perennial flowers?
Answer: most annual flowers have a single season lifespan, whereas perennial plant material has a lifespan of two or more years
Question: What is the purpose for keeping soils friable?
Answer: A proper soil mixture ratio need to have a certain amount of air to assist feeder roots trying to reach nutrients in the soil, while allowing water to flow down thus creating a healthy growing environment for plants and flowers
Question: Name three common pests that maintenance crews should be aware of in the GTA ?
Answer: Skunks, Emerald Ash Borer, Japanese Longhorn Beetles
Question: Name 4 varieties of Juniper?
Answer: Grey Owl, Sky Rocket, Hicksii, Blue Star
Question: List three pros and three cons of mulching:
Answer Pros- 1. Choice of color gives a desired aesthetic. 2. Protects tree crowns while providing water wells. 3. Controls weed growth if turned and maintained to proper levels. Cons – 1. Needs to be topped up yearly. 2. Creates mold and fungus if not turned regularly. 3. Invites rodents and critters to nest in.
Question: What is the purpose of thatch in a healthy lawn?
Answer: A desired layer of thatch keeps the direct sun from reaching the crowns of the turf plant preventing it from burning and sheltering new growth
Question: What is the purpose of hollow tine turf aeration?
Answer: Creating air pockets allowing compacted, or claypan soils to breath and leaving room for any soil admixtures, seeding, fertilizations to be added
Question: Name the three main varieties of grass seed?
Answer: Fescue, Ryegrass, Kentucky Bluegrass
Question: Why is Perennial Ryegrass so important in a seed mixture, and what is its other common name?
Answer: Nurse grass, helps to integrate and promote health to other grass varieties
Question: What is Toronto’s hardiness zone?
Answer: Trick question. 5 and 6
4. Can we see your references?
Ask to see a project that the team has completed, preferably near your area. Ask for contact information of former clients so you can learn about the pros and cons of working with any specific team.
5. Are you members of Landscape Ontario Horticultural Trades Association?
LOHTA members have a commitment to maintain trust and confidence in the profession of horticulture. Being a member means that the landscaping team is more likely to be involved in helping foster horticultural education and research, therefore staying on top of their industry trends and best practices.
6. Why aren’t you as awesome as Aden Earthworks?
In addition to the above, you can take a look at review sites like Homestars.com to see what former and current customers have to say about the products and services the landscaping team offers.