Running a landscape gardening project

For those that love to work in the great outdoors, landscaping can be a wonderful career choice. Here are some tips for breaking into this enjoyable business.

Know the plants and trees that grow well within your region

Clients will ask your advice as to what to plant in their space. You will need to listen to them and match them with flora that will best meet their needs and vision. This means knowing native plants as well as those that are non-native. Your local agriculture service may have many of these listed on a website, or you can study some field guides.

Gain experience

If you have little experience, it can be in your best interests to work under someone else for a while. Working at community gardens or for an avid gardener in your community can help you gain skills and knowledge quickly. Observe what landscaping arrangements are most common and attractive in your region. This means paying attention the next time you go to a nicely landscaped business or housing development.

Market yourself

Start off with small landscape projects that you can use to build a good portfolio. Ask if you can come back to take photos when plants are established and thriving if you are putting in a new garden. These photos are invaluable when displayed on a Facebook page and website because they give prospective customers a good impression of what you can offer them. Facebook makes it easy for past customers to review your business, so clients will have references for you without having to ask you for them.

Keep good records

Landscaping can be hard work. After a day at work, you might not be too enthusiastic about updating your accounting books. Invoicing, taxes, insurance, and other administrative tasks are essential to running a business. An umbrella company can take care of these essentials for you so that you can spend more time growing your business or just spending time with those you love. All too often, administrative duties are set aside until they become overwhelming. Don’t let this happen to you. One lost invoice can cost you time and money.

Plan for the off-season

In many areas, landscaping work is at least partially, if not entirely, seasonal work. When it starts warming up, you will see an increase in business, whereas cooler temperatures will lead to a decrease. As a self-employed entrepreneur, you need to plan on how to financially deal with these times. You may consider doing other work or setting aside a portion of the income you receive during the summer months. If you have a hobby such as carpentry, you could make some furniture during the off-season and sell it online. Temporary work agencies can also sometimes offer work in a variety of fields. Of course, you may be lucky enough to live in an area where demand for landscaping is more consistent throughout the year. Some landscapers change strategies in the winter months and do things such as snow removal.

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