Looking for a Gardener: 8 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Professional
Many people think that having a small yard doesn’t require that much work to maintain. This could be true, but only if you have enough help and the right outdoor power tools. However, if you have various plants, flowers, and some trees, then it will surely require more work than you have anticipated. If you want your yard to look flawlessly beautiful, you should commit to maintaining it regularly.
What if you don’t have the time to spend in making your yard beautiful at all times? The best answer is to hire a reliable gardener. It will cost you some but will eventually pay off. With a beautiful yard, you can relax, entertain guests, and bond with your family. However, hiring the right gardener is crucial. Before you avail their services, make sure you have asked them these questions:
1. What Are The Qualifications of the Gardener?
If you’re planning to engage in some special project, then a professional gardener is the one you need. Does the gardener hold horticultural or landscaping certificates? Do they have a license, like a landscaping contractor’s license?
These documents will indicate the quality of work the gardener can provide you. Also, ask them about their experience and the clients they have served. This will give you a good idea of the competency of the gardener and whether or not they’re right for your project.
2. Do They Have References?
If your yard requires extensive maintenance, then you’d want references that can share with you their experiences with the gardening company. Did the company meet their expectations? Are they professional when working with you?
You can also check the yard of your neighbors. If you see something you like, you can ask them if they hired a gardener to take care of their yard. If yes, then ask for the contact details and discuss to see if they can meet your needs and wants.
3. Can They Manage Your Yard Both Organically and Sustainably?
If you are particular about being organic and sustainable, then it’s essential that you talk to the gardener about it. This has a significant effect on how they deal with weeds, fertilization, and pests.
However, you must take note that going organic and sustainable costs more than the traditional approach. Also, depending on your location, there are gardeners that are not that knowledgeable about organic and sustainable methods.
4. Do They Grow Vegetables?
It’s not common for gardeners or landscapers to grow vegetables for you. However, it’s worth asking as it’s a great way to save your budget for groceries. Today, healthy produce is quite expensive and growing your own allows you to pick the freshest fruit or vegetable while cutting a huge chunk of your expenses.
5. If You’re Goal Is a Garden Makeover, Do They Provide Permeable Landscaping?
Permeable landscaping is a reliable and environment-friendly way of landscaping design. It allows water and air to reach inaccessible soil allowing it to breathe properly. Moreover, it makes more space for cultivation and attracts butterflies and birds, which will make your yard even more beautiful.
Soil that is topped with a non-permeable material, such as asphalt and cement, will eventually die. You might want to consider replacing your traditional walkway, driveway, or patio with permeable pavers. These look like traditional paving, except that they allow water to go through the soil.
6. Can They Provide an Itemized List of Expenses?
In addition to labor, are you charged with the supplies as well? Do they seem reasonable? These questions are really important as they prevent you from being overcharged. With an itemized list, you will see where your money is spent and if the expenses are accurately calculated.
7. Can They Provide a Time Estimate?
A professional gardener with solid experience can complete the project faster. They might cost more but if you consider the amount of time it requires them to finish the job, they are actually cost-efficient. You can also foresee whether they are efficient for the job or not based on the resources they have.
If you have a huge yard, do they have enough manpower? Do they have the right tools to stay organized, such as motorized pole saws, lawnmower, motorized, or cultivator? If the job requires cutting down huge trees and removal of huge stones and other components, then mini wheel dumpers are huge plus. Having the right resources guarantees you that they can complete the project properly and faster.
8. How Much Will They Charge?
If you only require simple yard work, such as lawn mowing, then the charge should not cost much. However, local rates are different depending on where you are located. A great way to make sure that you’re being charged fairly is to ask neighbors, friends, family members, and even colleagues who are also hiring gardeners to care for their yard.
Meanwhile, for special projects, such as proper pruning of roses and trees, then the charge will cost more. For larger projects, such as garden makeovers, ask for an estimate and compare it to other gardening companies to get the most cost-effective value.