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Concept to Delivery

October 2011


Let’s hear it from... Landscape Group CEO Nick Temple-Heald

Portfolio See how three companies have designed and implemented their projects

Green-tech competition Your chance to win a Cooper Pegler sprayer Published by

Business intelligence



A safe environment full of colour and interest for elderly dementia patients within a care development

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| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2


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OCTOBER 2011 EDITORIAL Director – Lisa Wilkinson Tel: 01903 234077 Content Manager – Joe Wilkinson Tel: 01903 234077 ADVERTISING Business Development Manager – Jamie Wilkinson Tel: 01903 234077 Sales Executive – Luke Chaplin Tel: 01903 234077 Sales Executive – Kyle Barrett Tel: 01903 234077 Managing Director – Jim Wilkinson Tel: 01903 234077 GENERAL ENQUIRIES Tel: 01903 237779 CIRCULATION Subscription Enquiries: Tel: 01903 234077 MANAGEMENT Managing Director: Jim Wilkinson Director: Lisa Wilkinson Business Development Manager: Jamie Wilkinson Marketing & Content Manager: Joe Wilkinson Pro Landscaper is published 12 times per year by Eljays44 Ltd. The 2011 subscription price is £50.00. Subscription records are maintained at Eljays44 Ltd, County House, 3 Shelley Road, Worthing, West Sussex BN11 1TT, UK. Articles and information contained in this publication are the copyright of Eljays44 Ltd and may not be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the publishers. The publishers cannot accept responsibility for loss of, or damage to, uncommissioned photographs or manuscripts.

BLOWN AWAY! We're quite blown away by the fantastic positive response to our first issue.Thank you for all those wishes of encouragement and support. As well as allowing ourselves a small pat on the back, we reckon the response reflects the long-held need for a professional magazine to cover landscape contracting, highlighting best practice, stimulating debate and discussion, promoting trade by putting buyers in touch with sellers. We're not getting carried away. As winning sports teams say these days, we know there are things to work on, areas to improve. Some readers were disappointed that their particular corner of the industry wasn't covered. Well, watch this space as they say. We're sure you'll find something for you in this or upcoming issues. And talking of being blown away, how about the weather at IOG Saltex? Our stand was literally carried away by the gales! It was a great show, and good to meet many of you to get your reactions and content ideas. So see what you think of this issue.There's our big interview with Landscape Group's Nick Temple-Heald, latest membership briefings from the APL and BALI, tips on working collaboratively, plus all our regular features. Don’t forget, the APL are calling for entries for their 2012 awards, see page 30 for details on how to enter. We'd love to know what you think. Lisa & Jim Wilkinson


News Shed Industry news and events diary.


Let’s Hear It From… Nick Temple-Heald CEO of The Landscape Group reveals his hopes and dreams for one of the largest companies in the industry.

Design, layout and reproduction by Vivid Associates Ltd, Sutton, UK Printed by Pensord Press Ltd, Gwent, UK Published by © Eljays44 Ltd - Business Intelligence 2011

Business intelligence

Eljays44 Ltd County House, 3 Shelley Road, Worthing, West Sussex BN11 1TT Tel: 01903 234077

“We reckon the response reflects the long-held need for a professional magazine to cover landscape contracting, highlighting best practice, stimulating debate and discussion, promoting trade by putting buyers in touch with sellers.”


How to make a profit in Landscaping Sam Hassall with more vital business guidelines.


How to set the right price What to think about when pricing your work from David Winch.


Working Collaboratively Nigel Thorne reports on the relationship between the Landscape Architect and Landscape Contractor.




BALI Briefing Latest news from BALI including the winners of the 2011 BALI awards.


Latest kit October’s selection of new products including Turf, Sprayers and Fencing equipment.


The Little Interview Take a peek into the lives of people within our industry...

This month’s selection of amazing inspirational projects.

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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DIARY… OCTOBER 2011 4-5 October RHS London Autumn Harvest Show RHS Horticultural Halls, London SW1P 2PE

5-8 October World Skills London 2011 ExCel London

8 October Institute of Horticulture 2011 Conference & AGM Chelsea Physic Garden London SW3 4HS

11-12 October HTA Garden futures conference Millbank Media Centre, London SW1P 4QP

25-26 October Creating Landscapes Capel Manor College, Enfield, Middx

NOVEMBER 2011 1-4 November Hortifair 2011 Amsterdam

2-3 November IOG Scotsturf 2011 The Royal Highland Hall, Ingliston, Scotland iog-scotsturf

17 November The Landscape Institute Awards The Brewery, Chiswell St, London EC1Y 4SD

DECEMBER 2011 2 December BALI National Landscape Awards Grosvenor House Hotel, London

Your event: If you have a diary event you wish to publicise, send details to the editor at: lisa.wilkinson@

AWP win major design competition in China Newcastle-based landscape architects AWP are the winners of a competition to design a major mixed commercial and residential development in Wuhan, central China. The winning design concept will include 30ha of shopping malls, public squares, leisure complexes and 59 tower blocks set within four parkland landscapes. Construction is due to commence in late 2011.The project comes less than six months after the

company first looked at China as a potential market. Steve Laws, director of AWP, said: “This is a significant development for Wuhan and we are up against competition from other Chinese and overseas design companies, including the architects who previously worked on the retail complex. Hopefully, this project will be a springboard to secure further work in Wuhan and other parts of China.”

Landscape architect slams play consultation Consultation on landscaping for children’s play spaces is an “utter waste of time”, delegates at IoG Saltex heard. In a seminar exploring lessons learned from designing effective play spaces, landscape architect Adam White said landscape architects and designers should engage with local children and parents to find out

what they want and work with them to develop a project relevant to the community and the local area. “Consultation doesn’t work. Communities have no idea what is right or wrong,” he said. “But engagement really works. Get local children involved and they will develop far more respect for the space because they will feel a greater

sense of ownership towards it.” White also criticised the amount of capital budget – 50 per cent – commonly spent on fencing and surfacing around play spaces and said designers too often concentrated on play equipment before looking at what could be done with the landscape and considering the emotions involved in play.

A hat trick of accreditations to deliver safe, professional and environmentally responsible landscape projects Oak View Landscapes have become one of only a handful of landscape contracting companies to achieve ISO accreditation in three international standards across the range of its business operations. The accreditations extend to a quality management system (ISO 9001), the effective monitoring and reduction of environmental impacts (ISO 14001) and an Occupational Health and Safety Management System (OHSAS 18001). “The framework of the three accreditations is already assisting us in identifying more efficient methods

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

of working, thus reducing our overall environmental impact and controlling health and safety risks in our construction operations,” states Paul Downer, Oak View Landscapes Managing Director (pictured above). “Just as important, working to these standards will contribute to greater efficiencies benefiting the overall

performance of the business in the medium and long term.” He continues “Since our formation in 2004 we have developed successful long term relationships with many blue chip construction and development companies, it is important for these clients to see that we have systems and methods at the heart of our processes in order to work competitively and efficiently whilst delivering consistently high standards and safe working practices. On top of that, these accreditations make sound business sense!”

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Peace Gardens help bring relief to the Japanese Sixteen of the world’s best garden designers will bring relief to a nation recovering from the terrible devastation caused by March’s earthquake and tsunami as they started work on the 26 September to build peace gardens in South East Japan. The Japanese, renowned for their ceremonies to welcome the cherry blossom season and for their love of gardens, have one of the finest horticultural and landscape traditions in the

world. A total of 16 designers have been picked to represent 12 countries and five continents.Visitors will see ‘peace’ gardens by the best designers from Australia, North

IN BRIEF… Business expansion for Tracmaster

America, Europe, Africa and Asia. The Gardening World Cup takes place in the South East of Japan in a 17th century Dutch replica theme park the size of Monaco, Huis Ten Bosch. With its proximity to Nagasaki, the theme is deliberately, ‘gardens for world peace and a prayer for Japanese recovery’. This year it is being held in aid of the victims of the Japanese Tsunami.This year’s show will open from Saturday 8 October.

Garden City to Green City A new exhibit, From Garden City to Green City, has opened at The Garden Museum in London. The exhibition will explore historic and futuristic visions for growing and green space in the city. This begins with the Victorians, who longed to introduce more green into congested city living, through the meadows that sprung to life in WWII bomb sites, to the latest international concepts that suggest how ‘the green and the grey’ can

be better in balance. Christopher Woodward, director of the Garden Museum, said that the premise of the exhibition is that “lots of people want London to be a greener city to live in; garden cities are back in fashion, the demand for allotments is high but there’s a problem to do with space. Because once you put people in the sky, you don’t have gardens, do you?” Woodward said that, with the exhibition, the Museum is suggesting

by leaving behind much of its commercial work to focus on big domestic design and build projects and to work more closely with designers. He added that the firm would continue to do some commercial work for the big business parks because it was of a high standard. “The mundane day-to-day commercial work we won’t be doing any more because it is price driven rather than quality driven,” he

Top sites for Dobbies Dobbies Garden Centre owner Tesco is planning to buy up to 20 of Garden Centre Group’s top sites, according to reports. Lloyds Banking Group will this week formally start the £300m sale of the Garden Centre Group.Tesco is believed to have registered an interest in the auction.

New forum


The Decking Network is a forum based network for the Decking industry Network to show the materials, designers and installers that are available in this industry. Anyone can join, post discussions, chat, promote, advise, learn and blog about decking.

Best service award that we are in “a visionary moment in time, when the architectural orthodoxy is being challenged.”

Hillier to expand landscaping services Hillier Landscapes is to open a series of regional offices in a drive to expand its domestic landscaping services. The firm will develop a stronger presence in the Cotswolds and explore areas along the M3, M4 and A34 corridors to identify other potential sites for new offices. Its existing Bristol office will also expand its reach. Managing director Richard Barnard said the firm was returning to its “core values and roots”

Sussex-based Tracmaster celebrated the opening of new larger premises in the Victoria Business Park, Burgess Hill this month. To honour the occasion the RT Hon Nicholas Soames MP opened the premises, cutting the ribbon and speaking to staff and guests at the launch event.

explained. “I can’t put my staff on projects like that because they simply don’t enjoy it or get any satisfaction out of it.” Barnard added that he felt the time was right for the firm to expand: “For the past three years our turnover has remained the same with no growth, but this period has given us a good opportunity to reevaluate the whole industry and the company. We now know where we are headed.”

Edinburgh City Council has won a best service team award for parks, grounds and horticultural services.

National Trust switches to battery power Nymans in West Sussex, one of the National Trust’s flagship properties, is now using battery powered hand tools to ensure Health & Safety standards are maximised. Hand vibration and noise is considerably less and no long cables means hedges can be trimmed safely without inconveniencing visitors.

RHS membership soars RHS membership has risen to 380,000 after spending five years stuck at 360,000. Director Sue Biggs puts the increase down to “being much more open in telling people what we’re doing”.

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6 Saltex Review

shape your space



Well done to everyone who braved the elements and visited IOG Saltex between 6-8th September. If you went on Tuesday, you will no doubt have left very soggy and blown to bits by the 45 mile an hour winds. We were certainly tested and won’t forget the launch of Pro Landscaper in a hurry! Actually we had a fantastic time, thank you all for visiting our stand and congratulating us on the launch. We have had some amazing response and cannot thank you enough for supporting us. See our retweets column for just a few of the comments we have received. Our montage of photos shows some of the stands we visited and some of the lucky winners of the Dickies Workwear Competition‌..

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Saltex Review 7

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1 Joe Wilkinson presents one lucky winner with a Dickies workwear sweatshirt 2 View of stands on show 3 Muck Truck’s Max Dumper – proving you can get it through a standard size doorway 4 A worthy winner of some Dickies Landmaster Wellington Boots with his very own copy of Pro Landscaper 5 This visitor to the Pro Landscaper stand literally couldn’t believe his luck and thought there must be a catch when he was presented with some waterproofs. 6 The Ransomes Jacobsen remote controlled slope mower – the Spider 7 World of Arb ‘Climb a Mile’ relay race in aid of the Help for Heroes charity 8 The 2012 Polaris Sportsman® Big Boss® 6x6 800 ATV 9 Sports grasses by Easigrass 10 Another winner – but is he lucky because of the prize or that he gets to be photographed with Jim Wilkinson, MD of Pro Landscaper! 11 Jamie Wilkinson presents a visitor with his new wellington boots 12 The Polaris off-road 4x4 experience – great fun! 13 The Massey Ferguson stand 14 Kubota’s G23 ride on mower 15 The new Ransomes Parkway 3 commercial triple mower

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8 The Forgotten Industry “Multi-Hog” power unit under evaluation as a prime mover.

Civil unrest, recession (double-dip or otherwise), government cuts, high unemployment, rising fuel prices, doom and gloom, sometimes makes you wonder if it’s all worthwhile.Then you look at our industry and what it produces: phenomenal landscape construction at the Olympics, a successful Green Flag programme and some of the best sports turf management in Europe. Not bad from an industry that often seems to get forgotten.


FORGOTTEN ut why are we forgotten? We’re all too aware of the cuts affecting local authorities and the need for them to make savings whilst maintaining reasonable standards in our towns and cities. Along with these pressures, our sector is bounced between other industries and their regulations as and when convenient – agriculture for fuel use and health & safety,VOSA and the road haulage industry for vehicles – with training and development dependent on which sector has what to spend.


THINKING A BIT DIFFERENTLY Whilst there are numerous manufacturers of ground-care and landscaping machinery in the market place, the UK industry has been slow to follow the example of some of our European cousins in thinking a bit differently and making the man/woman and the machine do a bit more. Agriculture has been doing it for several years. Instead, we seem to follow a more traditional, “if it ain’t broke don’t change it” philosophy, which is seen every so often in tenders which ask for the playing fields to be seeded using a “contravator”, or allow the use of a “multi-mower”.

Manufacturers are not immune from the government cuts. Common sense dictates that if we’re not buying then they’re not selling. | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2


Manufacturers are not immune from the government cuts. Common sense dictates that if we’re not buying then they’re not selling, and there’s also the added pressure from foreign markets keen to get a piece of the action. We all look to get the best value for money in the equipment we purchase; do you buy cheap and replace more often, or pay more and look to extend the machine’s life? The market is awash with equipment to suit all pockets and inclinations. There is however a third option which is to think outside the box and invest in versatility.That’s not always easy when you consider the range of tasks undertaken in an average grounds contract, but within the landscaping sector, the world is your oyster. European manufacturers have long since seen the advantage of the multi-function tool-carrier: one power unit to cut grass, sweep paths, cut hedges, clear snow, prepare ground, the list goes on. We are not just an industry that demands different tyres on our tractors. Clients who have traditionally specified cylinder mowing in their parks and housing are now looking to save cost and may opt to rotary mow.That’s difficult to achieve when you have a fleet of triple mowers, though easier if the cylinder units could be replaced with rotary decks. For larger tractors the problem is more difficult and more expensive to address, especially when you consider fuel costs. Gone are the carefree

ABOUT THE AUTHOR An agriculturist by profession, I spent several years working on arable farms in central Scotland before starting with VSO in Egypt implementing a mechanisation program, managing field operations for a large commercial cotton plantation in Nigeria and as a contract instructor for Massey Ferguson in Yemen. During this time I also spent a year at Silsoe where I gained an MSc in Agricultural Engineering and Mechanisation Management. A serious road accident saw my return to the UK where upon recovery I joined Glendale as machinery manager in March l994 where I stayed until 2009, albeit with a short spell as account manager for the IPU group. I left Glendale as Company Engineer in December 2009 to join The Landscape Group as Group Head of Assets and fleet. Angus Lindsay days of red diesel use, an unfortunate result of our unpublished alignment with the agricultural sector, the question to ponder is, “when is a tractor not a tractor?”. N

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He cooks food to die for and has a love of motorbikes you’d be scared you’d die on. But what Pro Landscaper wanted to hear from Landscape Group CEO Nick Temple-Heald was his thoughts on sustainability, growth and what he means by wanting to ‘make a difference’.

Nick, tell us about the Landscape Group, how you are made up and how the work is structured. We are a business of 1,098 staff right now, 900 permanent staff and the rest are seasonal, but that’s not including sub-contractors who are also a large and valued part of the Landscape Construction business.Very few staff are office based.We have 60 managers up and down the country who are operational, and based here at HQ are around 30 people made up of HR, Health and Safety, Engineering, Finance, Business Development and Admin.We are a Venture Capital backed company with a top management group of eight people who own a percentage of the business, the rest being owned by the venture capital fund Elysian Capital LLP.We are currently growing and are in the top three companies of the type in the country. What are the major challenges ahead for the company? The challenge is the ability to grow within the constraints imposed externally.The outside world currently is not a stable platform with macro economic movements, up and down, that we can’t control. However, we are still required to show growth year-on- year in terms of profit and turnover which is a constant challenge. ±

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There is no pressure for the company to change, but we do need to continue to grow this business in spite of what happens on the outside. We have a three-point strategy for growth in our contracting business:1. KEEP WHAT YOU’VE GOT In the past year, we had 10 defensive tenders and kept seven of them.To do that we strive to give customers what they want. I’ve recently been to Raymond Blanc’s cookery school and his motto is ‘give zem what zey want and a little tiny weeny bit more’ (in a French accent – ask him to do this if you meet him!) So that’s the way to keep clients.

possibly be experts at everything.The quote we like is ‘Local services delivered to local people by local people, but with the best national back up we could possibly have’.


So you manage the business by regions do you – rather than build or maintenance? Yes, well, a bit of both. As with all businesses we have a model, but sometimes reality kicks in and we

2.WIN MORE TENDERS We have the next five years mapped out, as to when the tenders and contracts are going to come up. We are public realm in maintenance and landscaping; but that said, we have a lot of private sector clients. 2 3. GROW BY ACQUISITION We acquired Banyards and Wyevale since the acquisition by Elysian.These firms have quite a lot of smaller private sector clients, and both companies have now been completely integrated into the business, plus we have brought in new people from elsewhere. There are five legacy companies: English Landscapes Maintenance, English Landscapes, Western Landscapes, Wyevale Landscapes and Banyards. Over the last two or so years we have moved our Head Office to Coventry to be right at the centre of the country and developed strategies to build up a great support system for the operational people and contract managers out in our other areas. We believe we now have the best HR, the best engineering, the best health & safety, the best regional management and the best financial support that contract managers could possibly have.They need that as they’re in the front line and have to call the shots, right in the thick of it, having to deal with everything that’s thrown at them and they can’t

Give zem what zey want and a tiny weeny bit more.

| October 2011 | Volume 1 Issue 2

1 Media City, Manchester – £3.7 million, Hard Landscaping project. 2 Herschel Park, Slough – £1.3 million, Heritage Lottery Funded Park Restoration project. 3 Connelly Del, Ealing – £114k, Water Fall Restoration project.

3 have to do something different! We have three regions – North, East and West – but the major landscape construction projects are actually run on a national basis. By ‘major’ we mean predominantly hard landscape construction which is dealt with from our office in Warrington. There is a constant debate in business about centralise versus de-centralise, and what you will find is big businesses tend to vacillate on a six to seven year cycle between the two at one point centralising being in favour and another decentralisation. What we’re trying to do is avoid that and simply get the balance right. We are more centralised than we were two years ago, but the way to get the balance right is autonomy on the ground in the regions to get on with the job, but within a framework of reporting, control and a Landscape Group way of doing things.We aren’t completely there yet but we

are infinitely better than we were two years ago and it’s getting better all the time.The major thing is that our managers know they have a strong support framework. In terms of purchasing how does this work within the Group? We have many suppliers that we use which are managed through our company wide electronic purchasing system. If there is a new product or something innovative from a new supplier, say a new machine, the supplier would be required to give the machine to us on demo. Angus Lindsay, our Group Head of Assets & Fleet Management, will get as many people in the regions involved in the process of testing and demonstrating the piece of kit and he will feedback to the supplier. Many finished versions of machinery that you see at IOG Saltex for

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out internally, both in our relationship with existing clients and business development and tendering. We won 15 major maintenance contracts last year, eight being new ones, plus the seven retentions. So now we go to the next stage, building relationships with consultants, architects and clients in advance of tenders to get ahead of the game.

example over the years, will have had input from people like Angus before they are fully put into the market. In terms of materials we are improving relations with suppliers, treating them properly (like paying them on time!) and as a result getting better commercial deals. With regards to who is responsible for buying what; heavy, low-value materials, such as turf and soil, are best bought locally. With high value materials, such as granite and other ornamental stone, we talk directly to manufacturers on a national level. In terms of specification – do you specify or does client tell you what they want ? This varies and is entirely dependent on what clients want. As an example, we recently completed the construction of the landscape surrounding Media City in Manchester, the new home of the BBC.This job was £4.5million excluding materials but £7million if you add those in which in this instance were purchased by the client – everything was supplied because the materials used had to be identical to the surrounding buildings. So here every last bit is specified. Generally speaking, materials aren’t specified down to the nth degree, though plants are often the exception. Every contract is different. Most of our construction contracts are designed

by an architect, who normally works for the client. That said, there’s a huge amount of toing and froing and discussion over the design, and we have to work closely with them. Sometimes they’re very prescriptive about their designs and won’t change anything, so we give them exactly what they want (plus a little bit more) but others understand that the project can benefit from our experience and we work together to achieve the best result.Timescales vary according to the constraints of the job. For example, we’ve just completed a job on Sir Matt Busby Way in Manchester. a large paved area with the shop in front of Old Trafford Stadium, which very clearly had to be finished in time for the first match of the season.

Everyone we talk to at the moment says that sustainability is a big issue – what are your thoughts? It is very important but not always easy to define. Every person’s idea of what sustainability means is different.There are carbon footprint, landfill and recycling issues, but also conservation and restoration where an environment is turned into something that works. There are lots of different angles to sustainability and we are leading the field in terms of sustainable ways of working. For instance, measuring carbon emissions and the planting of trees to offset carbon. It’s completely necessary because it’s what the client wants so we give it to them. So where’s the little bit more? We are also trying to take the lead on biodiversity, working with the local Wildlife Trusts, going the extra mile in community based conservation projects, such as providing and monitoring bird and bat boxes and doing school talks and getting young people involved for example. The buzz word is sustainability and everyone’s idea of it is different but it’s quite simple really. It’s not about simply being seen to do something but encouraging all 1100 of us to do the right thing in every instance.

So roughly what is the split between landscape construction and landscape maintenance? Currently 75% maintenance 25% landscape construction.

Is landfill a huge cost for you? It’s massive but decreasing almost by the month as we roll out our recycling initiatives. Let’s be brutally frank, we are green for three reasons. Firstly, we believe it’s the right thing to do, secondly, it’s what the customer wants but also because it makes good business sense. When all these things come together we will make inroads into true sustainability.

So what about winning work? Does The Landscape Group spend a lot of time talking to architects and making sure you’re in a position to win jobs? Well, yes. Businesses go through a development process and we are at a stage where we are sorted

Growth opportunities for the Group? We intend to stick to the knitting – we’re not going to go off and buy garden centres or make compost (which I’d love to – because I was once Chairman of the Growing Media Association there therefore I guess “Mr Compost”). We’re going to stick with Volume 1 Issue 2 | October 2011 |


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We’re going to stick to the knitting – creating new landscapes and maintaining those that have already been developed. creating new landscapes and maintenance of those landscapes that will have already been developed. We have pioneered and are probably the market leader in the clean and green concept which is evolving towards ‘Outdoor FM’ – outdoor facilities management – giving councils the opportunity to put together different services in the outdoors. Another opportunity, as cuts and public spending bites, is that councils, strapped for cash, may seek to outsource more operations. But mostly... growth simply by just being best at what we do – we have got to be the best. You have to look at your business and find something about it which is unique.This is a fantastic industry, in terms of opportunity and passion, although often not particularly well organised compared to some. It’s true there is a wealth of talent in terms of landscaping, maintenance and horticulture out there, and we’re grabbing what we can so we can grow our own employee talent pool. But we are short of people who want to get into the industry, who are planners, logistics experts, engineers, scientists, mathematicians.There is a need to make horticulture sexy so that graduates want to come and work in this sector. Are they well paid? At the lower end of the spectrum, such as outdoor workers, park keepers, seasonal workers, probably not. But as you move further up and look at management and technical positions and compare them to other industries with which I am familiar, then I think, yes, we are reasonably paid. Is there a role for Associations to sell the industry better? I don’t know that, they do a good job at selling the industry in terms of what we produce. The BALI Awards, for instance, is an outstanding showcase of our industry achievements. But whether they get the message across outside of the people involved with the industry I’m not sure. I was the Chairman of an Association in the past and I | October 2011 | Volume 1 Issue 2

said there are two things that determine whether it is strong, weak or successful – one being the budget and how much members are prepared to pay. And, secondly, the quality of the people and the seniority of people who get involved in the meetings. If you don’t send senior decision makers to meetings it becomes a talking shop because the people there aren’t decision makers. Guilty as charged – I don’t go to meetings , but that’s endemic in our industry. Imported products – do you have any issues with that? It makes no difference at all. An item is purchased simply on the grounds of its best end-to-end value. It’s full life cost, sustainability, emissions, health and safety issues such as vibration, and longevity.

What do you do to relax? Of course I love cooking but also what does someone who spends most of his business life at a rapid pace do to relax? Ride motorcycles. I have three motorcycles (two Ducatis and a Yamaha) and will shortly be riding down to Southern Spain on holiday, so that’s what I do to relax. Thanks for your time Nick and for the insight into the Landscape Group and the person behind the position – and reader if you ever bump into this man be sure to ask for his advice on how to cook the perfect steak – inspiring!

REFERENCES The Landscape Group

Would the VC company have any concerns with the machinery you use? The whole concept of VC is to make the best value for money, to make the company worth more. If you’ve got tired old kit or inappropriately purchased kit, when you come to sell the business it won’t be worth as much. It’s not for a business of our size to dictate policy on imports and exports, we just buy the best materials and equipment for the job in terms of quality, environment safety, performance, reliability, longevity and price. It would be nice if everything was locally sourced but that’s not always possible. Are there any Companies you admire? Yes, ours! In our industry – each company is different in terms of strengths and weaknesses, structures and financial circumstances.Therefore if you took the best bits from each one you would make a mega company, but a business like that would never work. Why? Because we’d all want to be in charge of it!! If you were to ever leave the Company what would you want your legacy to be? The most important thing would be for the 1,100 staff who work for the Landscape Group to be left with a strong stable company that is able to withstand whatever the world throws at it and has their welfare at heart. But I’m not going anywhere just yet.

First Floor Offices, 3 Rye Hill Office Park, Birmingham Road, Allesley, Coventry, West Midlands CV5 9AB Tel: 024 7640 5660 Email: Web:

BALI (The British Association of Landscape Industries) Landscape House, Stoneleigh Park, Warwickshire CV8 2LG Tel: 024 7669 0333 Email: Web:

Wyevale Landscapes Upper Buckover Farm, Buckover, Wotton-under-Edge, Gloucestershire GL12 8DZ Tel: 01454 419175 Email: Email: Web:

Banyards Ltd Nettletree Farm, Horton Heath, Nr Wimborne, Dorset BH21 7JN Tel: 01202 828800 Email: Web:

Elysian Capital LLP Ingram House, 15 John Adam Street, London WC2N 6LU Tel: 020 7925 80 50 Email: Web:

Next Month: In the November/December issue we will be featuring The Media City project in the Portfolio section of the magazine.

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14 Business Tips


It is not possible to make a profit until you fully understand your costs.When your client asks you to submit a price for a job there are 3 questions you need to ask yourself. Sam Hassall reports.

Ensuring your profit from Landscape contracts 1. How much is this going to cost me to do? 2. What is the minimum profit I am prepared to make on this job? 3. What is the maximum profit I can put on this job and still win it? The two latter questions and answers are a matter of your needs, risk and acumen.The first question is simple – It’s just arithmetic and that is the one we will deal with now. THE THEORY 1. There is no point in working if you are going to lose money. 3. You have to understand your costs.

THE COSTS OF MECHANICAL EXCAVATION Different types of dig require different machines and have different costs. The amount of time that the excavator arm can swing per hour (Cycles per hour) determines the efficiency of the machine. Table 1 shows the basic costs of different machines commonly used in our sector. THESE PRICES INCLUDE • Hire rate based on a weekly hire • Operator at £19.00 per hour • Non productive time of 8 hours per 40 hours weekly hire (20%) • Fuel using manufacturers issued information for consumption. | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

TABLE 1 Type of Dig

Work carried out

Cycles per minute



Loading to trucks or dumpers. Dependent on availability of dumpers returning to be filled



Bulk groundwork’s

The machine moves occasionally but can usually work in a radius


Excavation for removal

As above but working in a specific area


Excavation to reduce levels

This is usually fairly accurate work and is slower


Trenches for foundations

Accurate work and the machine must move along the trench. (Trenches are often deeper and wider than services trenches below)


Trenches for services

Usually narrow trenches and the machine must move often



Cost/ Bucket Cycles/ hr volume m3

1.5 tonne 3 tonne 5 tonne 7 tonne 21 tonne

23.68 42.65 52.23 63.15 81.50

0.04 0.13 0.28 0.28 1.21

25.0 7.7 3.6 3.6 0.8

Most expensive

THESE FIGURES DO NOT INCLUDE • Delivery to site and collection charges • Profit • Bulkages of soils • Banksmen which are a legal requirement The most common excavation types are shown in Table 1.

TABLE 3 Bulkage Rates Sandy loams Heavier loams Clay Heavy waterlogged clay

Factor the price from Table 4 1.2 1.25-1.3 1.5 1.6-1.8

SIZE OF MACHINE Generally speaking the larger the machine the lower the rate per m3 excavated. Obviously there are numerous factors affecting choice of machine • Access • Operator ability • Efficiency

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Business Tips 15 TABLE 4: MACHINE COSTS AND OUTPUTS Type of work

Machine arm cycles per minute >>>>>>> Machine type 1.5 tonne 3 tonne 5 tonne 7 tonne 21 tonne


vol. m3

Cost/hr £

0.04 0.13 0.28 0.28 1.21

23.68 42.65 52.23 63.15 81.50

I would comment that landscapers tend to hire or operate machines based on their ability to operate them using their own labour whereas ground workers are often able to provide lower rates because they use larger machinery. Table 2 indicates the cost per hour of hired in machines and operators. NOTE: The operator rate here is based on a cost of £19.00 per hour. Please refer to our previous cost investigation to see the source of this rate. Table 2 assumes the following. • Machines are hired on a weekly rate • Operator cost included at 19.00 per hour • Delivery and collection charges are not included in these costs • Weekly hired machines hired for 40 hours per week actually work 32 hours per week. This allows for downtime, refuelling time, repairs, etc. Efficiency is only 80% FILLING DUMPERS WITH EXCAVATED MATERIAL. Another factor which affects digging cost is filling dumpers. The figures used in this article assume that there is no waiting time on site machinery, The cost of dumpers or trucks to move excavated material on site is not taken into account in this cost investigation. From Table 2 you can see the capacities of machines and their cost implications. I always say use the biggest machine you can to reduce your costs. The following issue is the type of dig the machine is performing. If you apply the information from Table 2 to the type of dig you are doing you then get your cubic metre cost rate for the work you are doing. From Table 4 all you have to do now is apply the costs to the volumes


Bulk ground works

Excavation for removal

Excavation to reduce levels

Trenches for foundations

Trenches for services







Gross volume excavated in 9.6 31.2 67.2 67.2 290.4

8.4 27.3 58.8 58.8 254.1

7.2 23.4 50.4 50.4 217.8


4.8 15.6 33.6 33.6 145.2

4.2 13.65 29.4 29.4 127.05

3.6 11.7 11.7 11.7 -

Note trenches for services all assume 0.13 m3 ditching bucket EXAMPLE 1 • A 3 tonne machine loading produces 31.2 m3/ hour (Gross) • The cost of a 3 tonne machine with driver and fuel is £42.65 • The cost per m3 loaded is 42.65/31.2 = £1.36 No bulkage factor is added here as the excavated material is already loose. EXAMPLE 2 • The output of a 5 tonne machine excavating trenches for services is 11.7 m3 per hour (deposited alongside the trench) The • trench is 300 mm wide x 600 deep. • 1 m of trench is 0.18 m3 (nett) • The soil being dug is loamy topsoil with a bulking factor of 20% • The excavated material is therefore 0.18 in the ground multiplied by 1.2 which gives a total volume of = 0.2160m3 • A 5 tonner digging trenches generates 11.7 m3 per hour (gross) or if you divide by the bulkage factor = 9.75m3 • 9.75/0.18 =54 m of trench if it were a clear run and the trench was in a straight line. • The cost of this trench therefore from Table 4 is:the cost of the machine per hour £52.23 the output in linear metres (54) =0.96p / linear m

• I know, however, that my machine will not dig 54 m of trench on a sustained basis so I would apply a factor to this trench to allow for banksmen, sustained output, and setting out time moving, alignment etc.This is where your site knowledge and experience comes in. • Don’t forget to add on your profit!

CONCLUSION • Using these tables gives you the theoretical cost of the machines and represents the true cost in an ideal situation. • Very rarely are landscape sites absolutely ideal so readers should apply productivity factors to the tables. • Readers should use these tables and then adjust the base figures using factors of productivity and bulkage for the soil types being excavated. NEXT ISSUE We will examine some of the actual costs for common tasks in our industry. Readers are invited to submit their suggestions

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Sam Hassall is the UK’s only dedicated specialist landscape cost consultant. As Managing Director of LandPRO Limited he consults with Landscape professionals both on cost and implementation of Landscapes. His range of services are to provide cost information to both Landscape design professionals and Landscape contractors. Sam’s expertise is gained from his formal training and many years of experience in the landscape industry. As part of his portfolio Sam also compiles the Spon’s External works and Landscape price book and developed the market leading LiberRATE Estimating system. Further information is available from or by calling direct to LandPRO Ltd 01252 795030

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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16 Business Tips


RIGHT PRICE ricing is analogous to a farmer harvesting his crop. It’s the way product and service providers gather in their share of the value their efforts have created. Pricing is the most important of the four Ps of marketing. It is literally the only means available to the seller for capturing value so, in your marketing strategy, Price needs to be aligned with Product, Promotion and Place in order to create a viable value proposition. Your Price sends a signal to your customers about what you think your product or service is worth.This is a far louder message than advertising or any other form of Promotion! Consequently more resources should be devoted to Pricing than the other three Ps. Each customer will create a price ‘band’ based on their perception of the value – to them – of what you propose to do. A price outside this band, at either end, will be ignored. (Really! Would you actually want to eat a pizza that was being sold for 3p?) You need to discover this band each time. Although Service Providers don’t supply commodity ‘stuff’ or tangible goods, they still need to be wary of how they, and therefore their customers, view their services. A low level service business charges for activities, such as fixing a leak. A higher level of service business might charge for the time a customer spends with them – for the ‘experience’ – such as an evening spent at the theatre. But a Professional Service Provider operates on an even higher plane, causing the customer to demonstrably achieve certain outcomes. Professional Services are ‘transformation’ businesses. Decide what type of service business you are because this will determine how you arrive at a fair price. Some service businesses will behave like suppliers of commodities, tangible goods or activities – Cost accounting in minute detail, trimming costs and adding an arbitrary profit

What is ‘the right price’? Indeed is there such a thing as ‘the right price’? Even a ‘fair price’?


| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

margin to arrive at their prices which they then publicise like an online bookstore. Others will behave like just the type of service business they are not – they will charge at an indefensible hourly rate for the length of the ‘experience’ the customer gets from them.There are much better ways! VALUE PERCEPTION You need to price your customers, not your services, so that you are dealing with those who get the most value out of working with you.To do this you need a means to discover the value that each individual customer is perceiving. You have to segment your customers by how much they’re willing and able to pay. Forget demographics! Get them to differentiate themselves each time they’re thinking of buying. Great pricing strategies are designed to get customers to reveal the maximum they are prepared to pay.You need to price your services like an airline prices its seats on the same flight!

This is very easy to do when you’re providing services! Very few Service Providers would lose all their customers if they raised their prices and it is particularly easy to sub-divide your customers at low cost because you will be having a sales conversation with them. And it is impossible to create a black market in services because they can’t be sold on! Professional Service Providers occupy a market that most sellers would die for – The ability to establish a price with each individual buyer at extremely low cost. Service Providers really should be taking advantage of the strong position they naturally have, simply by asking the right questions in a sales conversation! If you would like to find out more about making sales without selling and getting paid what you're worth, visit to download 30 more free practical ideas that you can implement straight away in your business. Or you can contact David directly at

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Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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18 Contractors/Designers

WORKING COLLABORATIVELY: Landscape Architect & Landscape Contractor Relationships he ingredients for the completion of a successful landscape project ought not to be particularly challenging. If the client’s brief has been fully understood; the design, scope of works and specification developed accordingly; and the landscape contractor selected via a balanced, open and fair tender process; what, thereafter, can possibly go wrong? Personal experience has shown in so many instances that perhaps the relationship between the landscape architect and the landscape contractor is not as robust as it might have been. The majority of landscape architects pride themselves on their abilities as excellent leaders, coordinators and collaborators of or within construction teams. However, it seems that these skills do not always transfer to one of the most important relationships within every landscape construction project; the engagement with the landscape contractor who has been employed to realise the landscape architect’s design on behalf of the client. This relationship is of fundamental importance to the success of every project. For the landscape architect, the landscape contractor can make or break the final, and most important, piece of the jigsaw in any commission. Equally, an uncooperative landscape architect can leave the contractor with all sorts of dilemmas and unanswered questions.Thus, it is just as important to communicate fully and openly with your contractor as it is with your client and other professionals on the team.This is, of course, a two-way process. Experience has shown that quite often the contractor has somehow been viewed in a capacity of lesser importance than others on the project, which will always prove to be an enormous error on the part of those engendering such beliefs. Without due respect between the parties, so many things could go very badly awry.


| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

From the point of view of a landscape architect, it is vitally important that, having understood the client’s brief, this knowledge is imparted wholeheartedly to the contractor.The more detailed the scope of works, and the more encouraging one is to open lines of communication (beyond the limitations of email contact and written contract documents alone), the more likely the project will be completed to everyone’s satisfaction and ultimately in that much sort after atmosphere of mutual trust and goodwill. Why anyone should believe that the contractor stands in any way outside this fundamental part of the relationship is incomprehensible. UTTERLY CONTEMPTIBLE From the position of landscape contractor, to be kept at arms length and engaged with only at times of difficulty or concern is not only demeaning but utterly contemptible.The exchange of knowledge and ideas between designers and contractors, particularly at times when ‘mother nature’ has intervened in the project programme is always invaluable and face-to-face communication will guarantee a better understanding of the issues involved and how they might best be resolved for the benefit of everyone – not least the satisfactory end result of the project in hand. Working closely on-site with the contractor, the landscape architect will be able to improve and hone their design skills with a better understanding of the more practical aspects of landscape operations.Thus, armed with such knowledge any future designs and specifications will be all the better for it.Vice-versa, the contractor will perhaps get a better perspective on the designer’s original design intent and approach the implementation of the detail in a manner slightly different from their original

interpretation. Again, it is a two-way learning process, which neither party should be afraid of but rather should encourage in order to promote bestpractice on behalf of a joined-up profession. Needless to say, the only thing that is ‘rocket science’ is indeed, rocket science… Nigel Thorne

ABOUT NIGEL THORNE Nigel Thorne MSc FRSA FLI PPLI Consultant Landscape Architect President, European Federation for Landscape Architecture (EFLA) Vice-president (Europe), International Federation of Landscape Architects (IFLA) Past-president, Landscape Institute (LI, UK)

Nigel is a chartered landscape architect (a Fellow of the Landscape Institute) specialising in landscape management. He practices as an independent landscape consultant concentrating on contract administration and project implementation but also works parttime for the award-winning practice of Rummey Design based in London, UK. Having served the Landscape Institute (UK) in a variety of elected posts, he played an instrumental role in how the LI approached its work in higher education, careers promotion and the professional practice examination. He was elected president of the European Federation for Landscape Architecture at the beginning of 2010. He works and teaches both nationally and internationally and regularly gives talks, seminars and lectures in order to promote the work of the profession around the world.

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SERENE SPACE FOR THE ELDERLY Thompson Landscapes were appointed as the design and build contractor to create a safe environment full of colour and interest for elderly dementia patients within the Maurice & Vivienne Wohl Jewish care development.

Thompson Landscapes are an award winning landscape design and build company with over 24 years experience. Working across London, the Home Counties and Dubai, the team have undertaken a broad range of both Private and Commercial projects with show gardens featuring at the Chelsea Flower Show on numerous occasions, winning recognition across the industry. Their strength lies in their depth of knowledge within the industry, having worked with suppliers the world over, and an understanding of specialist work methods to effortlessly accommodate unprecedented situations. A structured approach to project management has enabled them to confidently undertake any scale of project, from conceptual design through to practical completion. Thompson Landscapes are fully equipped to handle all aspects of the landscape project, with a full team of inhouse Landscape Architects capable of all master planning, concept design, and construction detailing required. Their core workforce is dominated by long serving employees, giving Thompson Landscapes a very strong sense of loyalty and commitment.This is evident in the quality of finish on each and every job.They have the influence and experience of people the world over, leading to a very refined set of work practices and methods and a unique knowledge of both contemporary and traditional materials.

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |


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| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

he brief for this project was to resolve initial design ideas working closely with both the main contractor and client providing design and material solutions to a defined budget. The existing site presented various problems and opportunities. The new site for the Jewish care development began construction on the Golders Green Road, London in 2008, Thompson Landscapes Ltd resolved design ideas and presented final materials with the client during May 2009 and consequently were awarded the landscaping contract. Initial programme schedules were issued by TLL to ensure the use of tower cranes and maximise access for the import of materials before the site became enclosed by construction.


Large bulk materials were introduced into the main courtyard area during September 2009 by tower cranes these included bulk bags of type 1 material totalling 56m3, 8no extra heavy standard Prunus sargentii trees and 40no palleted crates of silver and mid-grey granite stone equating to 395m2. TLL then maintained the Prunus trees over the winter on a weekly basis until our commencement on site. FIVE PHASES Landscape work began on this project in January 2010 for a period of 20 weeks.The project was divided into 5 areas or phases and these were released to TLL on scheduled dates during the progress of the project.Teams were assembled to

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Portfolio 21

Plan design

Due to the site being situated in the heart of the Jewish community, religious holidays including the Sabbath were closely adhered to and all staff were removed from site during these times.

concentrate on specific areas and join together within the final phase to complete hard landscaping works to the main entrance of the building. Due to delays from other site trades the MC handed various phases over at later dates than scheduled, and together with the inclement weather and snow experienced in January it left them with 2 weeks less than actually programmed. A large push included the introduction of further TLL staff and additional hours appointed to ensure they reached their determined handover dates with the MC. Due to the site being situated in the heart of the Jewish community, religious holidays including the Sabbath were closely adhered to and all staff were removed from site during these times to cause the

minimum of disruption to the neighbouring Jewish community. Hard Landscaping included the initial groundworks to prepare the site for the introduction of all concrete beds to paved areas. SAFETY FIRST Paving was purposefully designed to outline all areas with a contrasting colour to enable partially sighted residents to navigate all areas. A flamed granite throughout provided a non slip finish to all paved areas enabling safe transport. The central courtyard is the main focus of the development with a 360° view from the surrounding building. A safe raised water feature was designed and installed to segregate and divide areas

of the courtyard whilst introducing movement, reflection and sound to the environment.The water feature was divided into 2 separate pools and stainless rills with an uplit waterfall at the outlet, this was positioned to be both a feature within the courtyard and also within the main entrance as a focal point through the glass surround.The construction was clad in bespoke mitre cut grey granite profiles designed and scheduled by TLL.A hardwood pergola was positioned within the courtyard as a place to rest and relax, this is planted with climbing Vitis to create dappled shade. The pergola was developed to allow the temporary installation of canvas sides in order for the structure to be used as a sukkah during the Jewish sukkot festival. Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |


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Herbaceous perennial planting throughout established very quickly with regular irrigation.

Separately a series of hardwood raised disabled planters were designed and constructed within the residential care area of the development in order for disabled residents to undertake gardening activities at a comfortable height.These were all lined with GRP to increase longevity and retain moisture.Anti ram-raid stainless steel bollards were sourced and installed towards the main entrance of the building to prevent vehicles entering the property from the neighbouring main road.Fully bullnosed step profiles in silver grey granite were produced to stone schedules by TLL and installed with bespoke mid-grey granite corduroy paving to all entrances throughout the development. All stone was cut and profiled before arriving on site this included all main paving areas. Soft Landscaping works included the introduction of mature trees throughout the project to provide both height and instant softening to the harshness of the new building. Large quantities of Prunus lusitanica hedges were introduced to

Uplighting to the granite clad water rill provides a further element to the scheme after dark.

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

segregate the main courtyard area and also frame planting to other areas along Golders Green Rd. These instant hedges planted in double rows removed the requirement for brick walls throughout, this prevented the harshness of too much hard landscaping and the feeling of being imprisoned within the supposedly relaxing atmosphere.A careful and comprehensive planting scheme was developed to provide large areas of seasonal interest and companion planting. The design incorporated the use of herbaceous perennials to provide instant height during the summer months with establishing shrubs coming through to create the structure and bulk of the scheme. ATTRACT WILDLIFE A large variety of flowering perennials were chosen such as Achillea, Verbena, Rudbeckia, Helenium, Echinacea etc. to create swathes of colour and attract wildlife. Perennial grasses were also implemented to create movement and height these included Carex, Stipa and Deschampsia. A variety of herbs and fragrant plants were introduced to provide attractive scents and arouse the senses of passing residents.A memorial rose garden was designed and developed within the project and this was planted with a variety of shrub and standard roses specifically selected by the client. A fully automated irrigation scheme was designed and installed to meet the requirements of the new landscape including several different zones for individual areas such as the lawns, hedging and shrub planting. Upon completion of the project at the end of May/June 2010 TLL entered the project in to the annual BALI awards we were proud to be awarded the principal award for hard landscape construction for a project with a cost between ÂŁ300,000 -1.5 million. Daniel Farenden Designer and Project Manager Thompson Landscapes Ltd

REFERENCES Thompson Landscapes Ltd 610 Goffs Lane, Goffs Oak, Hertfordshire EN7 5EP Tel: 01707 873 444 Fax: 01707 873 447 Email: Web: Planting:

Joseph Rochford Gardens Ltd 1 Pipers End Nursery, Pipers End, Hertford, SG14 2PB Tel: 01707 261370 Fax: 01707 262847 Email: Web: Trees:

Deepdale Trees Ltd Tithe Farm, Hatley Road, Potton, Sandy, Bedfordshire SG19 2DX Tel: 01767 26 26 36 Fax: 01767 26 22 88 Email: Web: Water feature – mechanics and engineering only:

Fountains & Features Unit 3, The Meridian Business Centre, King Street, Oldham OL8 1EZ Tel: 0161 870 3550 Fax: 0161 626 0682 Email: Web: Stone:

IN-EX Stone Ltd 610 Goffs Lane, Goffs Oak, Hertfordshire EN7 5EP Tel: 01707 876 718 Fax: 01707 877 676 Email: Web: Timber is directly imported by:

Thompson Landscapes Ltd Stainless Steel Balustrades:

Tulipart Little Trenewth, Michaelstow, Bodmin, Cornwall PL30 3PE Tel: 01208 851945 Mobile: 07891 379415. Email: Web: Furniture/Tree Grilles:

Broxap Ltd. Rowhurst Industrial Estate, Chesterton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Staffordshire ST5 6BD Tel: 0844 800 4085 Fax: 01782 565357/562546 Email: Web:

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NO PROBLEM! Designing a sloping garden is challenging and it can be hard to know where to start. Linsey Evans’ creation for this garden in Gerrards Cross hit the spot! SIZE – 240 square metres DEVELOPMENT TIMELINE November 2010 – April 2011 BEFORE APPROXIMATE COSTINGS – £35-£40K MAIN PROBLEMS • Steep slope which made excavation perilous – 3m drop from top to bottom, also cross falls. • Limited access – everything had to be brought in and taken out via the top of the garden by removing a fence panel. Some access by 60cm wide side passage. • Soil and ground conditions challenging – a scraping of topsoil over stony clay. • Weather – heavy snow, sub-zero temperature and excessive rain throughout the winter and early spring hampered progress significantly. CLIENT’S REQUIREMENTS • A contemporary style garden that reflected the newly refurbished interior of the house. • A much larger patio area with a screened space for a barbeque. • A large lawn area at the top of the garden. • New terraced levels.


• A gentle route up the garden. • Retain existing shed and large Pine tree at the top of the garden. • Less planting, planting to be more manageable. The lower courtyard terrace is enclosed on three sides by rendered blockwork walls 900mm high which also form the retaining walls for the first level of raised planting. There is a herb garden adjacent to the chunky pergola which screens the BBQ area, its walls function as informal seats. This terrace is split into two levels for practical purposes. Steps lead up to the intermediate terraces from the courtyard. The retaining walls are painted a dusty pink.The courtyard is paved with grey Indian sandstone and has a contemporary, formal feel; it is sheltered and has a really nice sense of enclosure and privacy. The pergola was made from 150mm square timber uprights and top frame. The whole pergola is painted black. It is softened by some planters with

Linsey Evans is a Berkshire-based garden and landscape designer working mainly in London and the Home Counties, but with aspirations to work around the World. Linsey’s gardens are characterised by strong built elements softened by elegant planting schemes that give the gardens interest and living structure all year round. Visit Linsey’s Web site and blog to learn more about her work and life as a garden designer. Blog:

box balls and climbers. It is not intended that the plants will completely smother the pergola, but that its form will remain visible. As well as screening the barbeque area the pergola stops the eye and adds to the overall sense of privacy on the lower terrace. The route up the garden is via three linked shallow ramps with railway sleeper retaining walls. The path is finished with self-binding gravel and zigzags up through the intermediate planted levels to the upper level. The intermediate planted levels help to widen the garden, soften the retaining walls and emphasise the geometry of the garden. GOOD COMPROMISES Railway sleepers have been used to retain the upper terraces of the garden to keep down costs. Sleepers are highly cost effective as they do not need a footing, are much quicker to put up and cheaper than hard materials. If you use new sleepers and make sure they are neatly finished they can look good in a contemporary scheme. In every garden build there are compromises, this was one which had to be made and did not ruin the overall aesthetics of the new garden. The top level is an ‘L’ shaped lawn with narrow planted borders along the two sides. Planting was kept deliberately to a minimum on the lawn Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |


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Presentation plans


terrace as the client specifically requested a large, uninterrupted lawn area. The back border has been planted with a Hornbeam hedge which will be kept clipped into a tight box shape. The other boundary has been planted with wall shrubs under planted with herbaceous geraniums.The idea is to soften the

boundaries without reducing the size of the lawn. All boundary fences, the pergola and the shed have been painted black as it is a great backdrop colour for plants and as it is the colour of shadow it fades into the background when needed. The planting had to take account not only of the

clients’ requirements, but the garden’s aspect – very shady on one side and very hot and sunny on the other. There is a mini parterre on the border at the back of the courtyard terrace that gives year round interest and formality to the entertaining area. Otherwise, the planting is designed to be either highly shade tolerant, or suitable for a hot sunny site. Because this has led to a slightly diverse planting scheme key plants that will tolerate either sun or shade have been used tie all the planting together, such as Brunnera ‘Jack Frost’, Pennisetum villosum, Heuchera ‘Obsidian’, and Epimedium ‘Frohnleiten’. Linsey Evans Linsey Evans Garden Design

REFERENCES Linsey Evans Garden Design

The plants were from the following nurseries:

Tel: 01344 442944 Mobile: 07901 852731 Web: Email: Twitter: @LinseyEvans Blog:

Hagthorne Nurseries

Dingley Dell

AVS Fencing Supplies

Lucas Green Road, West End, Woking Surrey GU24 9LZ Tel: 01483 473859 Web: Email:

Windlesham Road, Chobham, Woking, Surrey GU24 8SP Tel: 01276 857181 Fax: 01276 856016 Email: Web:

Unit 1, AVS Trading Park, Chapel Lane, Milford, Surrey GU8 5HU Tel: 01483 410960 Fax: 01483 860867 Web:

Landscape contractor:

North Hill Nurseries

Manor Landscapes

Scotts Grove Road, Chobham, Woking, Surrey GU24 8DW Tel: 01276 858800 Fax: 01276 855670 Email: Web:

16 Lyons Drive, Guildford, Surrey GU2 9YP Tel: 01483 234637 Web: Email:

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

The sleepers and timber from:

Gravel came from : The stone came from:

Love Stone

Green Garden Paving

Penn Croft Farm, Itchel Lane, Crondall, Hampshire GU10 5PX Tel/Fax: 01252 852586 Email: Web:

HTW, 1 Holly Bush Lane, Aldershot, Hampshire GU11 2PX Tel: 0845 272 35 35 Web:

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Fisher Tomlins’ seamless garden design and landscaping is uniquely placed to offer a fully integrated service with inspirational garden ideas. Shown here is a country garden in Petts Wood with new terraces, planting, woodland and play areas.

SEAMLESS DESIGN FOR A COUNTRY GARDEN ABOUT FISHER TOMLIN Fisher Tomlin aim to give a seamless service from design through to completion and maintenance.Their clients go to them by recommendation and what they all have in common is that they want a great garden or landscape that works for their lifestyle.The connection that their gardens make with plants, nature and particularly the needs of the garden owners is an essential part of their design ethos. All their projects are led by either Andrew FisherTomlin founder (pictured) or Dan Bowyer with the support of specialist gardeners, construction professionals and horticultural experts. Andrew Fisher Tomlin is a Director of Fisher Tomlin and has developed a large portfolio of work since founding the company in 1989. His experience includes public spaces as well as residential gardens both as a designer and horticultural consultant. Andrew is also a Director of the London College of Garden Design, a Fellow of the Society of Garden Designers and a trustee of Thrive - the national charity for horticultural therapy. Dan Bowyer is a Director of Fisher Tomlin and he is responsible for a wide range of design projects from private residential gardens through to public spaces both in the UK and overseas. He is particularly interested in contemporary spaces for city living and his work has featured in a number of publications. As well as their traditional areas of expertise creating residential gardens they are also able to advise on the creation of public spaces including design and horticultural consultancy. In recent years they have worked on large heritage projects and new landscapes such as Charlton House for the London Borough of Greenwich and the London 2012 Athletes Village.

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |


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he garden is located in Pett’s Wood in Kent and is fortunate to include part of Pett’s Wood which is an historic ancient woodland. Half the garden includes oak and other trees dating back more than 300 years and these were to be preserved and enhanced with further tree planting and woodland groundcover. The key development – and where most of the budget was to be spent – was next to the house where successive owners had laid different levels of concrete paving. The brief here was to substantially sort these levels out creating two new levels for entertaining, leveling the lawn and incorporating simple water features, storage and a new kitchen garden.


DEVELOPMENT TIMING G Design – Summer 2009 G Start construction – Winter 2009/10 G Pause for construction of side extension to house – Late winter 2010 G Final phase and completion – Spring 2011 APPROXIMATE COSTINGS G Construction costs G Clearance and waste removal – £17,000 G Retaining walls – £80,000 G Surfaces – £70,000 G Garden buildings – £20,000 G Lighting – £15,000 G Soft landscaping G Plants and planting – £10,000 G Lawn – £10,000

SOURCING MATERIALS FOR THE JOB G Bricks were selected to work with the colour of the existing red brick on site. G The paving was Deep Lane Yorks stone, G Summerhouse and greenhouse were custom made by English Garden Joinery G Plants supplied by Johnsons of Whixley and Palmstead G Drainage As soon as we started to excavate for walls we quickly realised that the main part of the garden was on a bed of sand up to 2.5m deep (see image). However the lowest level where the kitchen garden was to be located had a water table just inches below the surface. With the garden draining quickly through the sand this lowest level was almost acting as a sump before draining downhill beyond the garden’s boundaries. We therefore quickly abandoned an initial idea for surface level vegetable beds and raised them. Drainage was also resolved and incorporated pumps in cases of excess water levels.

G Retaining walls Existing retaining walls on the higher lawn level were restored rather than re-built which gave some challenges in matching brick type and required a high level of expertise to prevent over- restoration.

THE KEY PROJECT ELEMENTS INCLUDED: G Improving circulation around the garden, keeping the sense of space there is and creating new levels for entertaining, seating etc. G Creating a new entrance from the house into the garden and looking at the areas around the house, particularly to the side and where the glasshouse is currently located to create a new kitchen garden G Retaining a large lawn but leveling it to take a marquee in the future. G Giving more planting interest including year round colour and enhancing the existing woodland.

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Portfolio 27


Fisher Tomlin 8 Chertsey Road, Chobham, Surrey GU24 8NB Tel: 01276 855900 Email: Web: Main contractor:

Landform Consultants The Nursery, Bagshot Road,Chobham, Surrey GU24 8DB Tel: 01276 856145 Email: Web: Buildings:

English Garden Joinery 8 Chertsey Road, Chobham, Surrey GU24 8NB Tel: 01276 855955 Email: Web: Nurseries:

With over 20 years experience our portfolio includes traditional country gardens in Surrey, Sussex, Buckinghamshire and further afield; contemporary London gardens, roof gardens and kitchen gardens from our new Chobham gardens showroom in Surrey and our Wimbledon garden office in London. Andrew Fisher Tomlin Garden Designers G Access Access for large vehicles was limited so from the start we decided to knock down an old wall to the right of the house and re-build after construction.

Johnsons of Whixley Gilsthwaite Lane, Whixley, York YO26 8AQ Tel: 01423 330234 Web:

Palmstead Nurseries Limited Harville Road, Wye, Ashford, Kent TN25 5EU Tel: 01233 813340 Email: Web:

Plan design

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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28 Look Out For‌



The RHS National Young Designer of the Year competition is in its second year, and when a former tutor of mine suggested in September 2010 submitting a design for January of this year, I felt it would be a fantastic opportunity. n early February six finalists were shortlisted, and we were all asked to present our designs to a panel of RHS judges in London.Two weeks later three of us were informed that we would be invited to build our gardens at the Tatton Park Flower Show in July. After two weeks at Tatton Park for the build, I was announced as RHS Young Designer of theYear 2011, and the garden received a gold medal! The last eleven months have been an incredible journey, applying everything I learned from my BA(hons) Garden Design degree at University College Falmouth. Having graduated from the course in July 2010, I dove straight in to the competition entry and produced the design titled 'A Stitch in Time Saves Nine'.The garden is an urban orchard which addresses many issues of urban greening, from providing an alternative food source, to promoting biodiversity, to managing rainwater runoff.The design was intended for a city-centre street location to make it accessible to a number of urban dwellers, offering a space to relax and recharge. It incorporates a permeable paving system, beautifully hand-crafted oak benches, and a naturalistic planting scheme, all working to create a slice of the rural in a very urban location. The experience of designing, planning, sourcing plants and materials, keeping a schedule, managing a budget, organising a team of volunteers, managing a build, talking with the public and handling publicity has not only been hugely educational, it has also reinforced my decision to become a garden/landscape designer as I've found the whole experience incredibly enriching and enjoyable. Even with the ups and downs of building a show garden, I've been bitten by the show bug, and have some ideas in the making for next year! Following Tatton Park, the garden moved on to be re-built in Manchester city centre as a permanent space, and I had the opportunity to see it transform from a show garden into a permanent garden.The


| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

@ProLandscaperJW re-tweets:

Just received the launch issue of Pro Landscaper magazine and I like what I see! Congrats to the Wilkinson team

Paul Baker HollandScapes 3 Sep 11

Had a quick flick through your mag that's doing the rounds in our office looks great.Very fresh and focussed!

second build became a new project in itself, with a whole new set of challenges, but was equally exciting to build and helped to create some wonderful connections with the residents of Manchester City Centre. Returning home to Cornwall after a short break, I plan to further develop my design practice, with the aim of working collaboratively with other designers in Cornwall and beyond. Having just begun my career, I am keen to work, and learn from other landscape designers, architects and artists, with the hope of creating a multi-disciplinary art/design practice in the future. I am also completing my second year of a Master's degree in Art and Environment, and will be developing my design practice throughout the remainder of the masters next year. Daniela Coray Daniela Coray Landscapes

LisaCoxGardens Lisa Cox 12 Sep 11

groundsmaiden Ellie Tait 2 Sep 11

Its much better than the other landscaper mag, its aimed more at landscaping than commercial maintenance

gardenslondon Woodsy 8 Sep 11

The new Pro Landscaper magazine promises to be a really good resource

Can't seem to read past page 42 at the moment, I am mesmerised!

RichardWanless HollandScapes 3 Sep11

DeckingNetwork Decking Expert 5 Sep 11

Great Mag, nice one guys

Follow @ProLandscaperJW for information and news about all things Pro Landscaper. Also recommend a few people to follow. We at HQ would love to hear from you.

RHS NATIONAL YOUNG DESIGNER OF THE YEAR Applications will be sent out and available from hopefully the end of September with the deadline being in early January. In 2012 the RHS National Young Designer of the Year Competition will continue to encourage and showcase emerging creative talent, with ÂŁ12,000 funding awarded to each of the three most successful applicants chosen to build their garden at the RHS Flower Show Tatton Park. Applications will be welcome from

students and new or experienced designers providing they are aged 28 years and under. If readers are interested in entering the competition or finding out more about entering they can email and they can be placed on our mailing list.

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Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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30 APL Awards


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Calling all entries for the APL AWARDS 2012 The Association of

Professional Landscapers

CELEBRATING THE BEST IN LANDSCAPING The Association of Professional Landscapers (APL) is inviting entries for the APL Awards 2012 – which are celebrating their 16th year. Sponsored by Bradstone, the awards provide an opportunity to celebrate the best in British landscaping and enable winning landscapers to gain national recognition for their achievements. he 2012 APL Awards include an additional two categories with the projects under £100,000 split down into five bands – recognising the variation between schemes of different values and providing additional opportunities for smaller businesses to enter. APL chair and chair of the judging panel Mark Gregory said, “The reputation of these awards is growing year on year due to the ever increasing quality of workmanship.The 2011 Awards attracted some fantastic entries despite being a challenging year for many in the trade and we hope to build on this with the 2012 Awards.”


Holland Landscapes, winners of the 2011 APL Supreme Award. | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2


Project value under £10,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Project value between £10,000 & £20,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Project value between £20,000 & £30,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Project value between £30,000 & £60,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Project value between £60,000 & £100,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Project value over £100,000 – landscape/garden scheme


Soft Landscaping – any entrant


Hard Landscaping – any entrant


Overall Design & Build – designed by the landscaper


Commercial Garden – any entrant


Maintenance – landscape or garden, interior or exterior


Special Feature – any entrant


Young Achiever – entrant must be under 25

He adds ”The awards provide a great opportunity for businesses to showcase their work and shout about their success.” This view is echoed by Holland Landscapes, winners of the 2011 APL Supreme Award. Chris Baker comments, “Winning the supreme award in 2011 was absolutely fantastic for our profile and we are really proud of our achievement. We were amazed to win the category and the overall supreme award. It’s been worth every penny to take the time and effort to enter the awards and I would definitely encourage everybody to enter.You won’t know until you try!” APL members are invited to enter projects which have been completed between 1 April 2006 and 1 August 2011. Full entry details have been sent to all APL members. Entry forms need to be sent back to the APL events team as soon as possible. Full entries need to be submitted by Friday 28 October. If you are an APL member and have not received the

entry details, please email or call 0118 930 3132. The APL Awards lunch will take place at Kensington Roof Gardens, London on Wednesday 14 March 2012. For entry details please contact The Association of Professional Landscapers represents landscapers who meet a required standard of professionalism. Members of the Association are registered with the government endorsed TrustMark Scheme.They are regularly inspected and agree to follow a customer charter with clients.The APL is part of the Horticultural Trades Association which is the trade Association for the UK gardening industry. It is dedicated to helping develop the industry and its member businesses, including most garden centres and other garden retailers, growers, landscapers, manufacturers and service providers.

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Advertisement Feature


CLEANER FUEL here used to be a time when people in the agricultural industry had no choice but to bare the horrible emissions that their tools created.These times are now over with the introduction of the Aspen fuel range; an alkylate petrol which contains no benzene, sulphur or solvents - all of which are plentiful in the normal fuel (which most of you use) designed for cars. Users of Aspen no longer experience headaches, sore throats and eyes or nausea and generally feel much better at work from not having to breathe in these harmful chemicals. Aspen isn’t only better for the user; because of the cleaner burning characteristics of the product it means that the engines of your machinery remain cleaner and require less servicing. Ordinary petrol


deteriorates if it stored in containers or petrol tanks, which results in starting and operating problems. Aspen retains its quality meaning you can leave it in your machine for as long as you like without the risk of your carburettor getting clogged up. Aspen is available in a ready mixed 2-stroke and a plain 4-stroke version and both are available in 1 litre and 5 litre containers and in 200 litre drums. DESIGNED TO COMPLEMENT THE NATURAL ENVIRONMENT Aspen not only benefits man and machine but is also adapted to give the least possible environmental impact.The formation of ground-level ozone (smog) is a major environmental and health problem, which is caused by the reactive hydrocarbons and nitrogen

oxides that are emitted by combustion engines. Not only is this harmful for humans and animals but it also causes damage to agricultural crops, costing billions of pounds each year. Research has shown that use of Aspen alkylate petrol substantially reduces the formation of ground level ozone. It has also shown that the exhausts from a small two stroke engine run on Aspen alkylate petrol will form 40% less ground level ozone than the same engine run on normal European unleaded 95 petrol. For more information visit

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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32 BALI Briefing


BRIEFING ational Chairman Paul Cowell and the association’s new Chief Operations Officer Wayne Grills welcomed just short of 50 members, most of whom were meeting Wayne for the first time in his position as BALI COO, which he has held now for five months. It was a buoyant and positive meeting, with a review of the past year, including the very successful BALI Show, a comprehensive progress report on the Strategic Plan, information on new initiatives, and the voting in of three new BALI Board Directors – Louisa Bell MBALI MSGD of City and Country Landscapes, Stuart Simpson of Ashlea Limited, and Tom O’Connell of Evergreen Complete Garden Services.


BALI MEMBERS Chris Carr of Q Lawns, already a BALI Director, was voted in as Vice Chair and will take over Chairmanship of the association from Paul at the next AGM in September 2012. John O’Conner, Chairman of John O’Conner (Grounds Maintenance) Limited, stepped down as a Board Director after many years of service to the association. Paul Cowell, on behalf of the Board and BALI members, thanked John for his wise counsel and unstinting support for BALI over the years, sentiments endorsed with loud applause by everyone at the AGM. Demand for the LISS/CSCS skills card, launched at the BALI Show in June, is gathering pace, thanks to the increasing number of developers and main agent contractors who are now actively demanding that anyone working in a landbased capacity on their sites must hold one. | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

BALI’s 2011 National AGM took place last month at IOG SALTEX.

Already mandatory for employees of National Highways Sector Scheme 18 accredited companies working on the highways, the LISS/CSCS skills card is a ‘Smart’ card with app, containing details of the holders industry qualifications and competencies, proof of industry-specific health and safety training (the newly updated ROLO Health and Safety Awareness Course) and of successful completion of the CSCS ‘Touch Screen’ Health and Safety Test, required by anyone trying to gain access to work on a construction site. An ‘Industry Accreditation’ route (or ‘Grandfather Rights’) is available for those working in landscaping and landscape maintenance until May 2012 so, for those who want a card but don’t fancy having to achieve the minimum NVQ Level 2 qualification with all the associated costs, apply now! BALI is the scheme administrator for NHSS 18, LISS (Landbased Industry Skills Scheme) and the ROLO (Register of Landbased Operatives) Health and Safety Awareness Course, which is the first step towards gaining a LISS/CSCS card. For further information visit

BALI Show 2012, and plans for celebrating BALI’s 40th anniversary next year. Regional events include a visit to Melcourt Industries in Tetbury, Gloucestershire for South West members and guests (including SGD, LI and APL members) and a Designer Panel of BALI Award winners at the Noke Hotel, St Albans, Hertfordshire for North and South Thames members and guests. Both events take place on Tuesday 11th October and can be booked online at

BALI EVENTS BALI events for October 2011 include the BALI Affiliates Forum on Wednesday 19th October at Landscape House, Stoneleigh Park, Near Kenilworth, Warwickshire CV8 2LG. This is an opportunity for BALI service and product supplier members to get together and discuss a range of topics of interest and importance to them. On the agenda will be social networking, Ecobuild and the

“It was a buoyant and positive meeting, with a review of the past year, including the very successful BALI Show.”

BALI AWARDS – JUDGES GIVE THEIR VERDICT Judging of the 2011 BALI National Landscape Awards is over for another year and the award winners have now been announced. Many congratulations to the following contractors and individuals who now know they will receive a BALI Award but won’t know until the Awards ceremony at the Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London, on Friday 2nd December if they’ve won a Principal Award in their category. There are still places available for the Awards reception and luncheon – visit for information.

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And the winners are… GRAND AWARD sponsored by Rigby Taylor To be announced at the BALI National Landscape Awards – 2nd December 2011 1(A) DOMESTIC GARDEN CONSTRUCTION, COST UP TO £20,000 sponsored by Aggregate Industries James Bird Landscapes Ltd Transform Landscape Design and Construction Ltd 1(B) DOMESTIC GARDEN CONSTRUCTION, COST BETWEEN £20,000-£50,000 sponsored by Cuprinol Trade Aqua Gardens Ltd James Bird Landscapes Ltd J & S Scapes Ltd Landscape Associates Limited Landscaping Solutions Ltd 1(C) DOMESTIC GARDEN CONSTRUCTION, COST BETWEEN £50,000-£100,000 sponsored by Johnsons of Whixley Graduate Gardeners Ltd Nurture Landscapes Ltd Sandstone Design Solutions Ltd Tony Benger Landscaping Ltd 1(D) DOMESTIC GARDEN CONSTRUCTION, COST BETWEEN £100,000-£250,000 sponsored by Palmstead Nurseries Creative Landscape Company Limited Graduate Gardeners Ltd Nurture Landscapes Ltd Outdoor Options Ltd 1(E) DOMESTIC GARDEN CONSTRUCTION, COST OVER £250,000 sponsored by Europlants UK Bartholomew Landscapes Ltd 1(F) DOMESTIC GARDEN, MAINTENANCE ONLY Transform Landscape Design and Construction Ltd 1(G) SOFT LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST UP TO £300,000 Although of a very high standard, all shortlisted entries in this category were judged to fall short of the exacting benchmark of all round excellence demanded by winners of a BALI award.The judging panel unanimously agreed that, to ensure a BALI Award remains the highest accolade achievable by those working in the landscape industry, this category would stand without any contractor receiving an award in 2011.

1(H) SOFT LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST BETWEEN £300,000-£1.5m sponsored by British Sugar TOPSOIL Gavin Jones Ltd Graduate Gardeners Ltd J. Mallinson (Ormskirk) Ltd 1(J) SOFT LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST OVER £1.5m sponsored by Hillier Nurseries Elite Landscapes Ltd 1(K) HARD LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST UNDER £300,000 Bartholomew Landscapes Ltd Jack Moody Limited 1(L) HARD LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST BETWEEN £300,000-£1.5m Blakedown Landscapes (Operations) Ltd Land Engineering Scotland Ltd MacLay Civil Engineering Ltd (2 awards) The Landscape Group 1(M) HARD LANDSCAPING CONSTRUCTION, COST OVER £1.5m sponsored by Quinton Edwards Elite Landscapes Ltd Land Engineering Scotland Ltd The Landscape Group Willerby Landscapes Ltd 1(N) RESTORATION AND REGENERATION SCHEME sponsored by TopGreen Blakedown Landscapes (SE) Ltd Grace Landscapes Limited The Landscape Group x 2 awards 1(P) INTERNATIONAL AWARD Atelier DYJG Beijing Tsinghua Urban Planning & Design Institute Beijing Tsinghua Urban Planning & Design Institute, Research Centre of Landscape vs. Blakedown Landscapes (Operations) Grangemore Landscapes 1(Q) LANDSCAPE DESIGN EXCELLENCE AWARD, OVERALL PROJECT COST UNDER £50,000 Jacquetta Menzies Patricia Fox, Aralia Garden Design & Build 1(R) LANDSCAPE DESIGN EXCELLENCE AWARD, OVERALL PROJECT COST OVER £50,000 sponsored by ReadyHedge Bowles & Wyer Ltd Jane Peterson Janine Pattison Garden Design (2 awards)

BALI Briefing 33

2(A) GROUNDS MAINTENANCE, FREE PUBLIC ACCESS sponsored by Kubota Bartholomew Landscapes Ltd Gavin Jones Ltd Ground Control Ltd IDC Greenscapes Ltd John O'Conner (Grounds Maintenance) Ltd Quality & Service Ltd The Landscape Group (2 awards) 2(B) GROUNDS MAINTENANCE OF PRIVATE AND BUSINESS AREAS, LIMITED PUBLIC ACCESS sponsored by Ransomes Jacobsen Bartholomew Landscapes Ltd Blakedown Landscapes (Operations) Ltd Gavin Jones Ltd (2 awards) Ground Control Ltd Nurture Landscapes Ltd 3(A) INTERIOR LANDSCAPE, INSTALLATION GP Plantscape Ltd Planters Horticulture LLC 3(B) INTERIOR LANDSCAPE, MAINTENANCE ONLY Ambius 4(A) BEST INNOVATION / TECHNOLOGY USED IN A LANDSCAPE SCHEME sponsored by Clear Water Revival Blakedown Landscapes (SE) Ltd Graduate Gardeners Ltd Land Engineering Scotland Ltd 4(B) EMPLOYER OF THE YEAR sponsored by Anders Plus To be announced at the BALI National Landscape Awards – 2nd December 2011 4(C) GREEN ROOFS / LIVING WALLS sponsored by Boughton Loam & Turf Management Ltd Frosts Landscape Construction Ltd Gavin Jones Ltd SPECIAL ROOF GARDEN sponsored by Bourne Amenity Winner announced at the BALI National Landscape Awards – 2nd December 2011 DESIGN & BUILD Winner announced at the BALI National Landscape Awards – 2nd December 2011 BEST NEWCOMER TO BALI Winner announced at the BALI National Landscape Awards – 2nd December 2011 With special thanks to the following sponsors of the BALI National Landscape Awards: Crowders Nurseries – Menu Sponsor Van Den Berk BV Nurseries – Charity Sponsor and Guest Directory Sponsor Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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34 Vans

WHAT VAN? Choosing transport is something of a balancing act for landscaping professionals. They need a vehicle that can transport people, materials and equipment to, say, the 18th hole – but not one that will decimate the fairway in the process. Colin Sowman reports. heir on/off road mobility and load carrying capability have traditionally played well for pick-ups – especially after HMRC clarified that business can reclaim VAT on vehicles with a payload of more than 1t. On the down side, pick-ups are quite expensive (from around £16,000 for a 4x4) and rather poor on fuel economy (30mpg is about tops for most 4x4s).They also leave the load exposed to the elements and the unscrupulous, meaning they are not ideal for transporting delicate or high value items. It is possible to fit a cover to the load bed but these increase the price still further.


VIABLE AND COST EFFECTIVE Now, however, a new generation of high mobility vans could provide a viable and cost effective alternative to a pick-up for many users.Vans are often cheaper than pickups, many have better load carrying capacities and there is a wide choice of body styles (van, dropsides, tippers, mini buses) to suit the needs of landscapers. While vans have usually been 4x2s and suffered with poor off-road | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

ability, some manufacturers are now offering versions with traction enhancements options and even full 4x4 drivelines.What’s on offer depends on how much material and how many people you need to carry. Citroën, for instance, offers two traction enhancement packages on its Berlingo vans and chassis cabs.Those happy transporting loads up to 850kg and venturing off road infrequently may find the Berlingo with the Grip Control option will meet their needs. For an additional £640 the Grip Control Electronic Stability Programme gives the driver five traction modes to suit slippery conditions (both off and on road) as well as Hill Start Assist.The package comes complete with Mud & Snow tyres and underbody protection. For those needing to go off road more regularly, Citroën offers Enhanced Traction versions (XTR+) of its Berlingo and Dispatch models. In addition to Mud & Snow tyres and full underbody protection, XTR+ models get bigger wheels for more ground clearance, raised heavy-duty suspension and a multiclutch limited slip differential. While the driveline

The Citroën Dispatch XTR+.

The Citroën Berlingo XTR+.

remains a 4x2 the limited slip diff automatically transfers up to 70% of the engine torque to the wheel with the most available grip.This enables the vehicle to cope with the most off-road conditions landscapers users are likely to encounter and without any driver input or training requirement. The system adds a maximum of 30kg to the vehicle’s unladen weight and around £1,750 to the price and adds off road ability without degrading on-road fuel economy. This means the XTR+ Dispatch will do almost 40mpg (on the combined cycle) and carry a payload of 1,163kg – better than most 4x4 pickups on both counts.This combination of on/off road ability and price has proved attractive to the Forestry Commission (where XTR+ Berlingos have replaced some pick-ups) and utilities companies. EQUALLY AS EASY TO USE Ford’s All-Wheel-Drive Transits are equally as easy to use as the system automatically engages the front wheels when it detects wheel spin at the rear, and disengages again once all the wheels are turning at

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Vans 35

The Transit AWD showing the transmission below.

the same speed. So not only does the system dramatically improve the Transit’s off-road ability, it does so without any driver input or compromising its on-road fuel economy. Most Transit vans and chassis cab configurations can be specified with all All Wheel Drive which adds only 50kg to the unladen weight – on the front axle – although it comes with a heftier £4,000 on-cost. All Wheel Drive Transits have found favour with the likes of National Grid, British Gas and even mountain rescue teams. But for landscapers there may be a drawback as for the system to engage there has to be a difference between the speeds of the rear and front driveshafts.This means one or both of the rear wheels have to be spinning before the drive to the front wheels is engaged and this will inevitably cause some ground damage.Whether this is acceptable to landscapers or not will be an individual choice depending on their work profile and needs to be made following an off-road test drive. However there is no need to spin wheels (or grapple with seemingly unmoveable gear levers) in Mercedes Benz’s 4x4 Sprinters as drive to the front

wheels is engaged and disengaged using a rocker switch on the dashboard. On the road drive is usually to the rear wheels only to preserve fuel economy and only when the going starts getting tough does the driver need to engage drive to the front wheels. And although 4x4 Sprinters don’t come with limited slip differentials, the smart use of the electronic safety systems provides automatic braking of any spinning wheels to divert the available torque to the wheels in firm contact with the ground. In doing so it also minimises ground damage. AUTOMATICALLY DISENGAGE Once back on hard ground if the driver forgets to disengage the front wheels (despite the warning light on the dashboard), the system will automatically disengage when the ignition is turned off. Standard fitment on 4x4 Sprinters are Mud & Snow tyres and a selectable low ratio gear set that drops the overall gearing by more than 40% to enhance hill climbing capabilities. 4x4 Sprinters also sit taller than their road-going counterparts

(110mm higher at the front and 80mm at the rear) to increase the attack and departure angles by 10° and 5° respectively – although the clearance beneath the axle remains unchanged. While the 4x4 Sprinter is not intended to replace a Unimog or a Land Rover Defender, its off-road capabilities are easily enough able to cope with any situation normally encountered by most landscaping professionals. Long and short wheelbase Sprinter panel vans, crew busses and double cab pick-ups in both 3.5t and 5t GVW variants can all be specified with the 4x4 driveline. Mercedes has kept 4x4’s weight penalty to 150kg and there is a marginal loss of on-road fuel economy because of slightly lower overall gearing. The price premium is quite hefty, around £5,400, but with so many options available and payloads up to 2.5t, one 4x4 Sprinter could carry more materials and people than two or more pickups. So the next time you need to replace your road vehicle, remember the choice is not limited to pickups and full blown 4x4s. N Colin Sowman Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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36 Start-Up



Yasmin and Mark Roworth, from Chorley own a small landscaping business called MPR Landscapes. Here Yasmin tells us about their road to starting the business – all the concerns and costs involved before you even start to make any money, and the importance of setting the standards high…

he opportunity came earlier this year to create our own business in the Landscape sector, allowing us to work together full time. Mark’s 10 years of experience in the sector and my administrative, marketing and website design skills were put into action and MPR Landscapes was born. Of course, the decision to start up wasn’t easy. The usual worries plagued us; would work come our way? Will we make enough money to survive a very harsh winter? Would clients choose us over our competitors? The scenarios were endless but we ploughed on and we got past the point of no return. Firstly, we educated ourselves by listening to others in the industry – and this is still important to us. You never know everything. Getting all the essentials to start up a business is


far from easy on the budget; sufficient funds are needed for even the basics. Purchasing a decent van, insuring it and getting it sign written takes up a large portion of the funds. Buying new tools and health & safety equipment is another big expense, but of course a necessity. We also needed computer equipment, business software packages and specialist stationery ie business cards and leaflets, plus logo design costs, a website and marketing. The list seemed endless and even when we thought we had covered everything – something else appeared on the ‘to do’ list. Whilst there may have been disagreements in the start-up of our business, both of us agree looking professional and having high standards in our work is something that will make us stand out for the right reasons to potential clients.

Telling all our friends, family and contacts that we were starting the business was probably the best thing we did. They were all so supportive and having seen the quality of Mark’s previous work had no qualms in recommending us. When other landscapers say ‘word of mouth’ is really the best type of advertising there is, I was sceptical but I couldn’t have been more wrong. The shiny new diary we bought all those weeks ago was starting to get ink on the pages……. See next month’s issue to find out what happened when MPR got off the ground, their first jobs won and the day to day challenges of running your own small business. Visit them at and follow them on twitter @mprlandscapes


| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

PLUS ALL OUR REGULAR FEATURES including – The Little Interview, Look Out For…, news from THE APL and BALI Don’t forget you can keep up to date with all that’s going on at, join our linked in group and visit our facebook page. Why not follow us on twitter @ProLandscaperJW?

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Turf 37

Grass will always be a core raw material for landscapers, that’s a given.There is much more to know about it these days though, so being wise to the array of features and benefits is essential. Neville Johnson reports.

urf producers have in recent years made it a much more installer and end-user friendly product. Research and technology by grass seed producers has raised standards enormously, and expectations from home owners, local authorities and amenity management generally keep on rising. A good first port-of-call when looking for turf supply is the Turf Grass Growers Association (TGA). It represents many of the main producers – though not all - and its website www. will give you links to turf companies up and down the country, and therefore details of the turf types and grades available. Sustainability, low maintenance, and ease of installation are the overriding emphases right now and there have been a number of significant developments here. Big roll production and delivery by growers is a huge plus, especially for larger projects. Areas as large as 40m2 can be laid in one go.The main bonus here is that turf weight is cut by half because of the soilfree growing medium. It’s a much lighter material to transport and lay. Fine mesh material keeps the root system together, ensuring damage-free laying and rapid establishment. Plenty of suppliers offer such turf and it really does make installation a much tidier and quicker business.


INSTANT USAGE Re-inforced turf, like Lindum’s Lokturf, has come on to market in recent times aimed specifically at high impact areas. This has a 40mm thick rootzone impregnated with polypropylene fibre to give instant usage in testing situations. It is said to create a loadbaring surface virtually free from devoting. Another advance has been the introduction of RTF (rhizomatous tall fescue) bred by one of the big grass seed companies, Barenbrug.This ticks a lot of boxes for lawns and amenity grass because its deep-rooted nature – it goes down as much as five feet - means far less watering and fertiliser is needed for maintenance. It has a self-repair quality as well. Don’t confuse it with traditional tall fescue, which

SWARD GETTING MORE TRUSTY The renovation of Derby Arboretum by English Landscapes included 750 square metres of Lindum’s Lokturf to restore worn mounds.These were stripped down, a layer of geotextile placed on top then built up with sand reinforced with crimped polypropylene fibres, and the turf layed on the crown. Inset: Growers Inturf report successful participation at The Landscaping Show at Stoneliegh in June, the first such event organised by BALI.

tends to be clumpy and unattractive. RTF does most of its shoot growing underground and produces a pretty dense sward.The grass is broadleafed, tough and resilient to wear and tear, perfect for most situations but not really a show lawn ingredient. It is now quite widely available. First available this spring and perhaps worthy of an environmental pat on the back is ‘carbon capture turf ’, the result of a joint venture between Inturf, Paynes Turf and turf product supplier Rigby Taylor. It is said to ‘lock up’ Co2 at a phenomenally faster rate than deciduous woodland and grows at a slower rate than normal grass, so cutting and maintenance is a less costly exercise. Early days, but it could play a part in sustainable landscaping, very much a buzz approach these days.The aforementioned Rigby Taylor has also come up with a means of coating its range of Mascot seed mixtures with nutrients which it claims boosts root development, stress resistance, sward density and colour, so if seeding rather than turf laying is preferred for a project an ESP (enhanced seed performance) mixture could be worth investigating. Incorporating wild flowers into turf is growing in popularity and another box-ticker for the environmental lobby.There are a number of options on the market, one such is Meadowmat from Q Lawns. It has 34 species of native wild flowers and grasses

and provides a delightful means of attracting and supporting bees, butterflies and birds from spring to autumn. Once established only two cuts a year are required, so it’s firmly in the low maintenance category. Check for details. PATENTED SYSTEM It’s worth taking note that according to one of the largest turf producers, Rolawn, prices are set to rise later this year because of rising costs, notably of fuel and fertiliser: the former having an impact on haulage and distribution. It’s never been more important to shop around for the best turf supply deals therefore.The same company has a patented system called Profresh, which is said to extend the ‘shelf life’ of turf once it has been cut and lifted. For landscapers this means there is less deterioration en route. N

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Neville Johnson is a freelance journalist based near Sevenoaks and for 20 years has been working as a writer and magazine editor. Recently he has been involved in the world of sports turf, but for 14 years also handled the PR for the Horticultural Trades Association He is also a Member of the Garden Media Guild, but has worked with – and in – many industries.

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Rolawn, Europe’s largest producer of cultivated turf have launched Profresh®, a patented and trademarked system that when used in conjunction with the company’s specially developed growing regime, gives turf two to three times its normal shelf life, achieved at a cost within commercially viable constraints. Independent tests carried out by the Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI), the UK’s leading independent authority in turfgrass research agronomy concluded that the Rolawn

Profresh® system significantly extends the shelf life of Rolawn turf meaning that it stays greener and fresher for longer even in warm conditions. Profresh® is the result of over 10 year’s development.The company have collaborated with several leading universities, both in the UK and abroad and have received significant research and development grant funding. The key benefit to stockists is being able to extend the window of opportunity in which to sell the turf in optimum condition. This, the company claim, has been proven to result in increased sales.

Turffit, one of Scotland’s leading suppliers and installers of turf have announced they are moving to new custom built premises in 2012.The new premises will be built near their current site at Kirkness Farm. William Baird, company director commented “we have been at our current premises for the last 16 years and have outgrown the space. As the business has grown the need became apparent our premises needed to grow too. The new custom built premises are literally around the corner from where we are at the moment and will give us a much improved customer friendly facility.” Turffit are confident that by moving to their new custom built premises they will be able to service their customers better and offer a wider range of complementary products such as top soil, bark, fertilizers and moss and lime treatments.Turffit hope to be operating from their new premises early next year. As Good As Grass supply and install premium quality artificial Turf, and offer a unique and superb product range. ‘Terrazzo’ this fabulous product is a summer green soft lawn grass.The surface is designed with an integrated curled fibre to give a soft bouncy feel, ideal for a multitude of uses including children and pets. Terrazzo offers a fantastic texture and unique make up – there is no other product like it on the UK market. Specifications: Colour: Lawn Green, Pile height: 20mm, Yarn type: Dual Texture and Curled. Uses/ Benefits: Child friendly: Yes, Pet Friendly:Yes, Laid on sod or sand: Yes, General ball sports: Yes, Roofs & balconies:Yes, Football: Yes, By water features:Yes, Sand infill required: No, Special holed latex backing for drainage:Yes, Laid on sod or sand:Yes. £22.50 per square metre + VAT. As Good As Grass offer two different methods of quotation, our new no obligation remote quote service or a home site survey. Please visit our website or contact our head office for more details.

With the news this month that turf prices are set to rise later in the year, Chris Carr, Sales and Marketing Manager at Q Lawns has confirmed that the Norfolk based turf grower will be keeping their prices as low as possible for as long as possible. “There is no denying that the price of inputs has risen steeply in the last two years” says Carr “but at Q Lawns we’re continually reviewing our production and marketing costs and making savings where we can so that turfing remains profitable for the landscaper and affordable for the end user. High prices may ultimately mean that householders will choose alternatives to grass lawns which would, in turn, have an adverse effect on the whole of the landscape industry” Chris goes on to say that “Q Lawns go out of their way to ensure that turf is competitively priced and readily available. We’re happy to quote on a job by job basis and can deliver next day to most of the country. Q Lawns Turf is grown to the TGA standard and consignment certificates can be supplied on request.

Landscaping professionals are increasingly reaching for artificial grass as an alternative to turf or seed. Yorkshire firm Liberty Lawns Co are experiencing a steady upturn in landscapers and architects specifying artificial lawns. Director Celine Reddihough says:“Customers are quickly discovering the benefits of the latest artificial lawns, which provide a look and feel that’s difficult to distinguish from real grass. Landscapers say that their customers value the leisure space offered by a newly designed garden. Customers also want to reduce the time spent on lawn maintenance.”The variable British weather, and growing pressure on family time means that homeowners are rejecting “mowing and sewing” in favour of weedless, mud-free artificial grass.Today’s artificial lawns come with an impressive technical pedigree. They look remarkably similar to real grass, including added fescues and multiple tones to replicate real grass.They are UV and stain resistant, can cope with pets, and have up to 20 years’ life expectancy. Celine Reddihough comments: “There is a broad range of artificial turf available, so customers have a good choice of grass thickness, texture, pile height and pile recovery.” As important as the material is the quality of the installation. Celine Reddihough comments: “We work closely with our landscape gardening colleagues to ensure a perfect installation.”

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

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GOANDSEEAT Creating Landscapes is a new trade show coming to Capel Manor College in Enfield, London on the 25th and 26th October 2011. Entry to the show is free and here we recommend a few of the stands that we feel are definitely worth a visit.

The team behind Reach It! Move It! Crush It! will be rolling in to the Creating Landscapes Trade Show in October.The company supplies transportable soil screening and concrete crushing machines enabling landscapers to see how they can recycle materials that would otherwise be considered waste and create costs. Reach It! Move It! Crush It! are also distributors for the full Avant Tecno range of equipment, accessories and attachments. And if a project requires an access platform or scissor lifts, or with winter on the way you are looking at snow clearing equipment, then drop in on the Reach It! Move It! Crush It! Stand 615 at the show to find out how they can help.

The team at Rapid Tractors will be demonstrating the safe methods and procedures involved when mowing a bank measuring over 45° with the slope more than 55° in places. Being shown in operation on stand at Creating Landscapes is a Rapid Euro and Rapid SM110 Mulching flail which is one of only a very small number of machines which are true banks tractors and designed to do the job safely. Rapid Tractors stress that such work can be done safely, calmly and without any issues as long as the correct equipment, built specifically for the job is used and that the operator is trained in the safe and correct operation of this machine. Stand 402 | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

With over 20 years expertise, Life Irrigation aim to provide you with the most efficiently designed irrigation system, using top quality professional products. As every garden is different, they will design and install an irrigation system that is tailor-made to your garden and your specific requirements. Post-installation, they offer all clients a bi-annual maintenance service to ensure the longevity of the irrigation systems they install. In addition, they are happy to provide technical support over the telephone as and when required. Life Irrigation is Water Industry Approved Installers (WRAS) and are members of the UK Irrigation Association (UKIA).Visit or visit their stand, Stand 403

Henchman, who can be found at Stand 504, are a long standing and recognised name when it comes to hedge cutting and working at height in the garden. So their attendance at the Creating Landscape Trade Show in October is sure to interest landscape gardeners who want to increase productivity, yet ensure safe working conditions.The Henchman hedge cutting platforms come in a range of styles to suit individual job requirements, for example, tripod ladders are best suited for reaching into fruit or topiary tree canopies and awkward spaces. The ladders are manufactured in high grade aluminium, fully welded under ISO 9001-2000 conditions, and the team at Henchman are available to talk with customers about their individual requirement. But Henchman do not stop at platforms, the company is expanding into areas such as rain water harvesting and recycling, while they have developed the easy lift harness and a full UK built log splitter range. The sweeping, twisting forms of nature have inspired the work of sculptor Charles Westgarth, and you will get the chance to see more at the show. Charles will be exhibiting at the show in October and his work is sure to interest garden designers as some of his pieces are inspired by plant seeds and shoots. From his Hertfordshire studio, Charles has worked on both personal and commissioned sculpture with the majority of his work in bronze. He has undertaken a collection of corporate and public commissions including a pharmaceutical company, interior designers, and a school and in 2005 won a public commission for Ware town centre in Hertfordshire. Stand 303

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Latest Kit – Sprayers 43

‘Death by lethal injection’ awaits weeds with the new improved InjectorDos from Micron Sprayers, a pesticide applicator specifically designed for the direct introduction of herbicide into hollow-stem weeds of which Japanese Knotweed remains the most widespread and damaging.The latest version of InjectorDos features a new metered volume dispenser and trigger for easier operation.The reduced amount of pressure required to operate the trigger makes it less tiring to use for repetitive applications InjectorDos is packed with operator friendly features which include a more compact and robust one-litre backpack, a comfortable shoulder strap and a funnel. Liquid supply from the backpack can be easily shut off, disconnected and isolated from the applicator using an in-line tap. Additionally, the InjectorDos has chemical resistant seals. By using the InjectorDos there is no loss of herbicide product into the environment and the unit is simple to clean and maintain. Techneat Engineering has built an unrivalled reputation with the Acuspray range of sprayers for the application of liquid fertilisers and fungicides. Saltex was the venue for the launch of the new towed Acuspray Elite which is simply hitched behind a garden tractor and offers accurate and faster spraying over large areas such as sports pitches, lawns and extensive turf areas. Based on the same principle as the pedestrian Acuspray, the towed version has a wheel driven positive displacement pump, an 80 litre tank and a two metre folding boom.The application rate is 200 litres per hectare and the on-off manual control for the sprayer is easily operated from the tractor seat.The other important features include anti drip nozzles, large diameter filling and low ground pressure tyres.Techneat Engineering Ltd. 01353 862044. In the crowded world of ATV sprayers, one name stands out from the pack – Wessex ATV. Built in the UK to high specifications and quality levels, Wessex sprayers are available with a unique and extremely useful feature; the spray boom is retained within the width of the ATV.This unique feature ensures that the traditional issue of boom damage caused by ‘snagging’ on trees and posts is minimised, headlands and narrow spaces are accessed with ease and the boom is protected from expensive damage. So Wessex ATV sprayers cost less long term! Whether it’s a 1.5m, 2m, 3m or even a 5m boom, the Wessex ATV sprayer boom remains just 1m wide, and can even be specified with hedgerow nozzles as an optional extra.

Walkover Sprayers Direct from the Manufacturer. Welcome to the Green Machines.The original turf and hard surface sprayer developed to meet the demands of turfcare professionals and the rigours of landscaping contractors. Walkover sprayers are designed to deliver liquid treatments reliably & efficiently through a durable pump as you walk forward.The pump is driven by the wheels. The sprayer is virtually self calibrating.There is no engine, no motor, no battery. This is a high quality, low maintenance, reliable machine.The most efficient way to spray.We have long been the choice of local authorities and sub contract landscapers. Manufactured in the UK to the highest material & build quality, we are proud to offer equipment capable of getting the job done, day after day. For the maintenance of golf greens, bowls greens & other sports surfaces during the Summer months. Walkover Sprayers can also treat frost & ice on pathways, pedestrian areas and school playgrounds during the Winter, utilising anti icing liquids that, once sprayed, prevent freezing & prevent accidents.Visit Walkover online for sprayers, spares & treatments: or phone us on 0845 521 1209 for an informal chat about your requirements.

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BEST FRIEND Whether you require an urgent delivery of tree tubes and stakes or advice on a tree planting project the new Green-tech website will provide all the answers. he new website from Green-tech ticks all the boxes for Landscapers across the UK – whether you need to price a job on-site with your smart-phone or researching a project specification at home, the Green-tech website is on-hand. Over 3,500 product lines are available to view on the new website, along with product technical information, demonstration videos, coverage calculators and CAD drawings. Green-tech also offers a live chat system through the new website, no matter how complex



the question – you will be able to get an honest answer from a member of the Green-tech team. Kate Humes, Green-tech Marketing Manager, comments: ‘The new Green-tech website is a great step forward for the business as a whole. We have listened to our customer base and incorporated

their requirements into this project. The new website reflects Green-tech’s commitment to our clients, ensuring everyone has access to essential product and specification information helping the job run smoothly.’ 01423 332 100

WIN A COOPER PEGLER SPRAYER WORTH £150 AND 10L OF GLYPHOSATE To celebrate the launch of the new Green-tech website, the landscaping supplies company is offering all readers of Pro-Landscaper magazine the chance to win a Cooper Pegler Sprayer worth £150 and 10L of Glyphosate. Answer the simple question. What is the name of Green-tech’s company morale officer? (Hint: Answer can be found on the Green-tech Meet The Team web page). Email your answers to and one lucky winner will be drawn out of a hat on the 1st November 2011.

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

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Fencing 45

The timber fencing market has witnessed a number of significant changes in recent years. The UK’s continuing love affair with the outdoor room and the quest to identify new innovative fencing solutions has led to a flurry of product innovations, writes Richard Jackson, CEO of Jacksons Fencing. arden fencing has evolved from the simple lap panel to the more robust feather board or even tongue and groove effect but now we are also seeing fencing products being used as an integral element of garden design. The seven show gardens which feature at the Jacksons head office in Stowting, represent an excellent example of how fencing can be used creatively not just in terms of delivering a secure boundary but also to bolster the aesthetic appeal of the garden.


ACOUSTIC FENCING As home owners increasingly seek sanctuary in their home, we are seeing a growing interest in acoustic fencing to counteract noise pollution, emanating not just from traffic but also from factories/leisure centres/schools etc. Sustainability and the responsible sourcing of timber materials continue to resonate with the average UK fencing purchaser but alongside this ‘conscience consumer’, we must also recognise that the current economic climate dictates that any purchases made need to represent a valid investment. The progressively environmentally aware consumer is familiar with the need to seek out timber that has been sourced from well-managed forests, under the environmental chain-of-custody schemes such as the Forestry

The Float Garden by Heather Appleton


POSSIBLE Stewardship Council (FSC) or the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC). In addition to achieving certification with both schemes, our unique 25 year Jakcure timber treatment guarantee ensures that our customers only need to buy once, demonstrating sound

ABOUT JACKSONS FENCING From humble beginnings to computer technology, robots and buying online – Jacksons Fencing is a family run business that was started by my father Ian Jackson and his father back in 1947.There's no doubt that family businesses are run differently to other types of business. We believe that traditional values matter and people count. Some public companies are governed by just a profit motive affecting both the workforce and customers. Our commitment to our customers is to provide the ultimate in quality, service and value.This is something that the whole Jacksons team takes seriously, from the initial phone call, fax or email enquiry, right through to the eventual installation of our products. Getting things right comes from having a pride in the Jacksons Fencing tradition. Richard Jackson

environmental practice and offering the lowest lifetime cost. Looking ahead, I anticipate the sourcing of quality timber could become an issue within the industry, with some businesses opting for the cheaper, more widely available European sawn timber and less emphasis being placed on the selection of the appropriate species of timber to deliver the correct levels of preservative penetration. I would also envisage that the price of fencing materials is likely to continue to increase, in direct response to the subsidies imposed by government, which encourage power companies to burn wood, resulting in a distortion of the timber market. Richard Jackson, CEO, Jacksons Fencing Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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Due to its strength, zinc/alu coating and unique shaped X Knot this visually appealing and easy to erect fence is the wire of choice with both fencing contractors and equestrian establishments. XFENCE from McVeigh Parker has made a significant impact in the UK wire fencing market.This unique premier wire netting has now become a familiar site around the UK countryside. Widely used by farmers, fencing contractors, equestrian establishments, wildlife centres and local authorities.The XFENCE range is able to exclude and contain whilst being easy to erect, tough and longer lasting.This unique premier wire netting has a wealth of benefits that set it apart from other traditional types of wire, improved XTRALIFE coated wire gives up to three to four times more protection than traditionally galvanised wire providing a longer maintenance free life.The unique strong unobtrusive X knot not only provides an excellent joint but also its smooth surface provides a safe environment for your horses. XFENCE is unlike traditional field fence, the vertical wires are uncut from top to bottom, and this single vertical wire dissipates any pressure on the fence providing a very strong fence line. XFENCE from McVeigh Parker has made a significant impact in the UK wire fencing market.

After meticulous research in the field and substantial investment, Gripple, the innovative company behind the revolutionary range of wire joiners and tensioners, has launched the Gripple Contractor Tool; a new all-metal tool which is even more robust than its predecessors, designed to withstand daily use and misuse. Sheffield-based Gripple has listened closely to its customers to determine exactly what they need from a tensioning tool, and directed the feedback into engineering this fresh solution from scratch. Much simpler than its predecessors, the new Contractor Tool is built to last, and takes all the strain out of tensioning fence wires. Stripped to the bare essentials, it still boasts several progressive and unique features to make a contractor’s life far easier.The Contractor Tool is perfect for use on all Gripple fence products, including the Gripple Plus joiner and tensioner, the Gripple Barbed and the GPAK bracing kit. For either installing a fence for the first time or re-tensioning down the line, the Contractor Tensioning Tool will prove its worth time after time.Visit for more details. Paramount manufacture a range of decorative railings designed specifically to meet the clients expectations for an aseptically pleasing fence.The Regency Range offers both protection and enhancement of Palaces, Country Halls, Grand houses and Heritage sites.The Regency design suits installations in cities, towns and rural locations and is a distinctive personalised fencing solution, offering security with style, and compliments its surrounding environment. Designed to meet the maximum impact for both visual aspect and security; constructed from a heavy specification of material which enhances prestigious applications and locations. The individual customer or end user can choose a design to meet their specific requirement; aided by our Design office who use the latest CAD technology.The Regency Range is bespoke to the customer or end users requirements; offering a number of configurations including, wall mounted, free standing (using support posts), or when mounted between brick piers offers a sophisticated appearance to compliment any boundary or perimeter. | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

Paddock Fencing offers superior quality iron railings and gates made to order in bespoke sizes. As with all our railing products, our iron railings are easily installed and coated with the same high quality electrostatic paint that ensures an even, aesthetically pleasing and weatherproof finish. The iron railings themselves are not just cast in a beautiful contemporary styling but also reliably durable so that they will stand the test of time and look smart for decades around the garden or driveway. Alternative colours are available to match requirements and blend in seamlessly with the property.

The Colourfence fencing solution is manufactured from Zincalume high tensile steel and is fully engineered to be light weight yet extremely strong and durable.The fence panels are guaranteed not to rot, warp or peel for 25 years and can withstand wind gusts up to 130mph giving real peace of mind whatever the weather. Colourfence's low maintenance characteristics means it never needs treating or painting, just the occasional hose down is

all is required to keep the fence looking as good as new. Available in a range of colours to compliment any garden environment, both sides are identical making Colourfence a most attractive fencing solution.The panels are made from Colorbond steel; one of the most advanced steel Products in the world and beneath the surface, world leading technology is hard at work delivering long life anticorrosion performance. Available in a range of heights, Colourfence fences keep your world inside and the outside world out. Infills are securely locked into the post and rails as a deterrent to intruders, and a full range of lockable gates is available.There are no footholds to aid climbing and no need for chemical treatments meaning a safer fence for families and pets. Colourfence fencing can be cut to any size on site, and can be stepped or raked to accommodate sloping ground and allow your garden fence to follow the natural contours of the land.

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Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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48 Classified

If you would like to advertise on this page call Jamie or Luke on 01903 234 077 | October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

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Classified 49

Keep up to date with industry news at

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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CHRIS DEAKIN Deakin Lock Garden Design, Suffolk/East Anglia.

What made you want to get into the industry? It’s a long story but basically there was a girl and she persuaded me to try horticulture and amazingly I loved it! Further down the line I realized that I could combine my love of art with my love of gardens and began studying landscape and garden design. The rest is history. How is the bulk of your work made up? Predominantly, domestic projects for clients who place a value on design. There is no particular type of garden (which I am glad about) it simply comes down to the type of person who wants to invest in their garden or outside space because they realise the value of having a well considered and beautiful outside space. Current trends in the market? The outside living ‘trend’ is still strong. Gardens continue to get smaller with new build modern developments and people’s time is becoming more

ALEX WEBSTER Earth Garden Care & Design and Inspector at Association of Professional Landscapers, Dartmouth, Devon. www.earthgardencareanddesign. What would you say is the best thing about your job? Every day is different. And though most weeks start with a plan things can change just like the weather, most of the time because of it. How is the bulk of your work made up? Currently the majority of my work consists of garden management and maintenance of about half a dozen prestigious gardens in the South Devon area. We have taken care of these for a number of years, so we have a knowledgeable rapport with the clients and their gardens. Current trends in the market? Environmental issues are at the forefront of all our minds, so no matter how we work this will affect the landscape industry in so many ways. Clients no matter their financial status, are aware of cost to

| October 2011 | Volume 1 | Issue 2

A small insight into the world of other professionals in our wide and varied industry. If you would like to appear in a future issue please email pressured yet many want a beautiful outside space to relax in and enjoy. Grow your own is back in a big way, even in the smallest of spaces. It really is the Good Life out there. Strong, bold colours are becoming more popular, with many people enjoying bright, hot colours. Your company’s plans for the next five years... We want to develop a design practice covering all aspects of garden and landscape design, both commercial and domestic and become one of the country’s leading centres for design. We are also about to launch a new web-site which offers something new, so watch this space! How do you remain competitive? This is something that needs constant monitoring. The problem with our sector is that too many practitioners of garden design are not truly professional. Several times recently we have come up against garden designers who do not survey the garden (and these were large complicated gardens) and charge such low fees that you wonder how they make a living; perhaps they don’t? Who are you inspired by? I have to say that many garden designers produce some fabulous gardens and the standard of garden

the planet and though the bottom line will always rule, designers and contractors that are showing they have taken these issues on board will still win the best contracts and produce the best work. Your company’s plans for the next five years? To work smarter and more efficiently, the world has changed and we all need to adapt and if necessary, to re-invent what we all do. I have discovered that it’s far more rewarding to be paid for what you know not just what you do. How do you remain competitive? By trying to offer something special, and showing clients that they and their gardens are important to us and that we really care. So we remain competitive by paying attention to details, and keeping the client up to date with future plans and ideas for the garden. Letting them know what’s planned for the next two or three visits or even the next seasons. Who are you inspired by? Jean Giono’s book the Man Who Planted Trees has been one of my Favourite books for a long time; it

design now, compared to when I first started in the 1990’s is a world apart. I like the planting style of Piet Oldorf and the structure of Luciano Giubbilei and Tom Stuart Smith consistently. However, I am really inspired by the many designers who ply their trade designing challenging gardens for people who don’t have big budgets. One thing you want to do before you’re too old? Play premier league football for Norwich City although perhaps that ship has sailed? If not I would like to go on a road trip across America with some friend on Vespas. Countryside or seaside? Seaside. I love the sea, feeling on the very edge of the land. Your proudest achievement? Apart from two fantastic boys I think winning The Tudor Rose at Hampton Court in 1998 (The first RHS gold). Where’s your favourite holiday destination? Southwold in Suffolk. It has everything, a beautiful beach, great fish and chips, and good Beer.

tells the story of a man who for no personal gain except for the joy of his work single-handed brings about a rural regeneration. It shows us all what we can do as individuals for the common good. Countryside or seaside? Living here in south Devon we certainly have the best of both worlds. Home looks out over the Dart estuary and the channel beyond. And Dartmoor is only 30 minutes away. But walking along Slapton Sands on a winters day certainly gets the endorphins pumping. Your proudest achievement? Walking around the garden house at Buckland Monachorum, with my daughter running around correctly identifying Verbena bonariensis. She was only tree and a half! Favourite song? Currently listening to Fleet Foxes and Helplessness blues is a contender, but my all-time favourite must be Wild wood by Paul Weller. (Good Choice – Ed). Spring, Summer,Autumn or Winter? It has to be Autumn, the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness.

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The Little Interview 51

RICHARD BARNARD Managing Director, Hillier Landscapes

What would you say is the best thing about your job? Client and staff satisfaction. What made you want to get into the industry? Passion for plants/landscape (from a farming background) Challenges ahead in your work? To achieve a smooth handover of the company to allow me to pursue other outside industrial interests. How is the bulk of your work made up? Domestic schemes both large and small.

JANINE PATTISON MSGD MBALI, Janine Pattison Garden Design, Bournemouth.

Current trends in the market? Green Walls, Green Roofs, Specimen Tree Planting.

Countryside or seaside? Countryside.

Your company’s plans for the next five years... Expand regional bases and increase size of contracts in the domestic market.

Your proudest achievement? For the Company – Gold and Best show garden at Chelsea Flower Show and BALI Grand Award both won in 2007. For myself – Receiving the Royal Horticultural Society Associate of Honour in July of this year.

How do you remain competitive? Ensuring we retain quality work with staff enthusiastic and passionate about the contracts we undertake. Who are you inspired by? Sir Edward Elgar. Favourite film and TV shows… Mamma Mia – has particular significance, Countryfile, University Challenge, historical documentaries. One thing you want to do before you’re too old? Visit and listen to opera in all major opera houses.

Current trends in the market? Low-maintenance gardens that look like they’re not.

Favourite song? None specific. I enjoy Enya, but classical music is my passion. Spring, Summer,Autumn or Winter? Spring. Where’s your favourite holiday destination? Greek Islands..

One thing you want to do before you’re too old? See the Northern Lights

Your company’s plans for the next five years... Grow….grow….grow.

Countryside or seaside? The Dorset coastline means the best of both worlds.

How do you remain competitive? By enjoying the game of the business.

Spring, Summer,Autumn or Winter? Spring – I love the feeling of transition.

Who are you inspired by? Christopher Lloyd, Andy Goldsworthy, Dan Pearson.

Where’s your favourite holiday destination? New Zealand – a land of contrasts, spectacular countryside and friendly people.

How do you remain competitive? Third sector partnerships are the way ahead, in terms of routes for grants/funding.

What would you say is the best thing about your job? I love my job because I have the constant opportunity to work outside amongst the wildlife, weather & nature.

Challenges ahead in your work? My biggest worry is current financial climate. Bar takings remain steady, but for how long? Revenue from this avenue, means my budget and reduced custom will have an impact on the maintenance of my surfaces in future. My work is always under scrutiny by players and officials. Working alone, under time restrictions and with limited budget is always a stressful product. No matter what level you are at.

What made you want to get into the industry? I got into groundsmanship due to attending evening mid week matches at Sunderlands old Roker Park Ground. It was always wonderfully presented, under the lights-the grass seemed unreal, beautiful, almost artificial. I left school and attended local college for City & Guilds in Horticulture and I was on my way.

Your plans for the next five years? Having worked in the independent education sector, I would obviously like to return there. It is a known fact that sports facilities are massively important to this sector, proof is the percentage of national sports men and women they produce in comparison to the public education system.

What would you say is the best thing about your job? Helping people to realise the garden of their dreams – whatever their budget. What made you want to get into the industry? A passion for plants.

JONATHAN BUDDINGTON Head Groundsman, Wearmouth Welfare Ground, Southwick,Tyne & Wear

Favourite film and TV shows? My favourite film is It’s A Wonderful Life and my favourite TV show is I’m Alan Partridge. Your proudest achievement? My biggest achievement was gaining the ECB County Cricket Pitch Advisers Qualification in March 2002. Spring, Summer,Autumn or Winter? I prefer Autumn as my favourite season. Spring is not far behind. But Autumn, with all the end of season renovation work on the bowls & cricket areas makes it a great time.

Volume 1 | Issue 2 | October 2011 |

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Profile for Eljays44

Pro Landscaper October 2011  

Pro Landscaper October 2011  

Profile for eljays44