MAR C H 2 0 1 8
A P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E O H I O L A N D S C A P E A S S O C I AT I O N
OLA Meeting: Ultimate Networking March 8 / St. Michaelâ€™s Woodside PAGE 7
Foreman Training March 12 / Cleveland. Ohio March 13 / Columbus. Ohio PAGE 12
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PR ES I DEN T’S COLUM N
MARIE MCCONNELL Lake County Nursery
WHO’S YOUR COACH? Have you ever stopped to think who your influences were at a young age? Maybe it was a teacher or a coach? Possibly a minister or a family member? And what memory do you have of that individual? Is it good, or was it bad? I was fortunate as a child to have a large family – 2 brothers and 3 sisters – with parents who were very involved with all of our activities. Where one Zampini went, you could almost guarantee, the others were there in support! We girls participated in the gymnastics program in both elementary and middle school. I was horrible at it. Where gymnasts were supposedly tiny, petite, nimble creatures – I was the complete opposite. And while my coach never once told me I shouldn’t participate – or that I couldn’t – there were many nights he told my dad to come back to pick me up, because I wasn’t going to leave the gym till I completed the task at hand. He had every reason you could think of to give up on me – though he never did – even when I gave up on myself. And though it was a struggle, I finished the year out. The following year that same coach found my strong point and asked me to help with the coaching staff. He believed this would be a much better fit, rather than making both him and me miserable. Many might have been put-off by such a suggestion, but I was excited by it. I thought to myself, “Me? I’m still a kid. How could I possibly do that?” But he
was right; my strength, at a very young age, was training and elevating those around me. In this instance, though I wasn’t very good at the performance aspect of it, I could see what the others needed to do, show them how to do it, and assist them with completing the necessary skills. That year, as a team, we eventually took home a few blue ribbons! Last month, I talked about the manager who wisely let me know I wasn’t meant for production. It felt good to have the opportunity to share those moments that changed me as a person, and to let him know what a lasting impression he had on my life. And as you also may have caught on to, along with good coaching, I’m also a firm believer in self-improvement and wanting to improve for the good of my team. Beyond having a good “coach,” there are many different ways to accomplish that task. continued on page 6 The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 3
TAB LE OF CON TEN TS M A R C H 2 0 1 8 WWW. OH I OLA N D SCA P E R S. OR G OH I O’ S P R OF E SSI ON A L G REEN I N D U ST R Y A SSOCI AT I O N OHIO LANDSCAPE ASSOCIATION 9240 Broadview Road Broadview Heights, Ohio 44147 Phone: 440.717.0002, or 1.800.335.6521 Fax: 440.717.0004 Web: www.ohiolandscapers.org and www.myohiolandscape.com EDITOR Rick Doll, Jr.
COVER: Landscape Ohio! Award Program submission from Moscarino Outdoor Creations, Inc.
3 PRESIDENT’S COLUMN Who’s Your Coach?
REGULAR WRITERS Michael J. Donnellan, King Financial, Inc. Jim Funai, LIC, Cuyahoga Community College Shelly Funai, Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens Sandy Munley, Ohio Landscape Association Bobbie Schwartz, FAPLD, Bobbie’s Green Thumb Cathy Serafin, ASLA, RLA, Suncrest Gardens ADVERTISING INFORMATION Submission deadline: 10th of the month, prior to the month of publication. For advertising rates and ad specs, please call 440.717.0002, 1.800.335.6521, or email Rick Doll Jr. at email@example.com.
13 FISCAL FITNESS
DISCLAIMER The Ohio Landscape Association, its board of directors, staff and the editor of The Growing Concern neither endorse any product(s) or attests to the validity of any statements made about products mentioned in this, past or subsequent issues of this publication. Similarly, the opinions expressed in The Growing Concern are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Ohio Landscape Association.
16 FOR SAFETY SAKE
OFFICERS President Marie McConnell
OLA STAFF Executive Director Sandy Munley
22 SPECIAL GUEST COLUMN
President – Elect Adam Capiccioni
Communications & Events Manager Rick Doll, Jr.
5 WELCOME NEW MEMBERS 9 PERENNIAL FOCUS
Jazzing Up the Perennial Garden: Variegated Perennials for Sun Why Invest?
Damaged Utility Lines Could Cost You and Your Company 4 CORE Elements to Business Success: Branding
24 PLANT OF THE MONTH
Abies Balsamea Variety Phanerolepis
28 FEATURE ARTICLE
Guest Worker Crisis Worries Landscaping Industry
34 DIRECTIONS 35 ADVERTISING INDEX 4 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
Treasurer Domenic Lauria Immediate Past President Cathy Serafin, ASLA, RLA DIRECTORS Doug Ellis James Funai, LIC Philip Germann Stephanie Gray, LIC Brian Maurer, LIC Joshua Way
C AL ENDAR OF EVEN TS U P CO M I N G O L A MEETINGS , EDUC ATION SE MI N A R S, A N D OT H E R GREEN INDUS TR Y EVE N T S
MARCH 1, 2018 SKETCHUP FOR BEGINNERS
MARCH 22 & 23, 2018 LMN BUILD A BETTER LANDSCAPE BUSINESS SEMINAR
Don’t have the time necessary to learn how to use complicated design software? SketchUp is hands-down the most intuitive, not to mention powerful, easy-to-learn 3D drawing tool on the planet. Join us as we cover the basic tools, their uses, and challenges associated with creating a finished landscape model.
MARCH 8, 2018 OLA MEETING (NE Ohio) Ultimate Networking – Learn From Your Peers When people gather together in-person to share ideas and learn from one another – the good, “old-fashioned” way – great things happen! Join us for a series of roundtable discussions covering various topics pertaining to your company and the betterment of the industry. See page 7 for more details.
MARCH 12, 2018 (NE OHIO) MARCH 13, 2018 (CENTRAL OHIO) FOREMAN TRAINING Foremen have to walk the fine line in working side by side with employees while having to direct, motivate and critique them. In this seminar, they will learn how to more effectively handle tight deadlines, tight margins and increase customer satisfaction. See page 12 for more details.
MARCH 22, 2018 21st ANNUAL LANDSCAPE OHIO! AWARDS GALA Join Ohio’s landscape community for an elegant, fun evening of celebrating as we reveal the 2017 Landscape Ohio! award winners. Held at the Cleveland Botanical Garden. Includes dinner and awards presentation. Call 440.717.0002 for more info.
Bring your numbers (all financials are kept confidential) and learn the simple systems proven to build more efficient, more productive landscape companies. It couldn’t be easier. In just 2 days, you’ll create real planning & estimating systems for your company, ready to be used the very next day. Use the discount code: OHAMAR2018 to save on admission. Visit www. ohiolandscapers.org/education/ lmnevent for more info.
MARCH 28, 2018 CENTRAL OHIO SPRING MEETING Drones & the Landscaping Industry Videography for promotional purposes seems to be the fastest-growing use for small unmanned aircraft in the landscape industry. Businesses typically hire an FAA-certified company, specializing in aerial photography, on a project-byproject basis, and there are good reasons for doing so. See page 29 for more details.
APRIL APRIL 5, 2018 CDL TRAINING Join us for Commercial Driver’s License Training and learn the information you need to know to pass the state CDL test. Taught by former truck driver and state test examiner, Daryl Lengyel. See page 21 for more details.
OLA’s NEW MEMBERS
The Ohio Landscape Association is delighted to welcome the following new members to the association:
REGULAR MEMBERS Blue Fern Landscaping 1308 Eastview Avenue Columbus, OH 43212 614-747-1520 Austin Stokes
Environmental Enhancement, Inc. PO Box 626 Westfield Center, OH 44251 330-887-5400 John McDermott Mark’s Pro Service LLC PO Box 681 Chesterland, OH 44026 440-226-0262 Mark Kovalick Tabor’s Landscaping & Garden Center, Inc. 800 East Middletown Road North Lima, OH 44452 330-549-2657 Erik Tabor Yard Barbers, Inc. 2800 Delmar Drive Columbus, OH 43209 614-253-5636 Andy Meyer
Dave Demore Nursery Sales 20 Park Road, Unit 2 Painesville, OH 44077 440-639-9551 Dave Demore / Myra Wallis Krystowski Tractor 47117 State Route 18 Wellington, OH 44090 440-647-2015 Larry Krystowski Preston Chevrolet and Ford 13600 West Center Street Burton, OH 44021 440-834-9700 Scott Rothfuss RSVP Publications 8567 S. Mason Montgomery Road Mason, OH 45040 216-831-7787 Joe Sucato
PR E S IDENT’ S C OL UMN continued from page 3
Other teachable moments that can change our lives can come from books, articles, videos and/or stories shared. I have a book on my desk written by Michael Lee Stallard called Fired Up or Burned Out. It is a collection of short stories of lives that have sparked creativity and a passion for the team. This book has helped me understand that what I say and what I do make the difference in the outcome for everyone. The book is broken into the sections of: What Fires You Up, Keys to Connecting with Your Team, How the Fire Starts with You, and a 20-Day Challenge. It is front and center when I am in need of a jump start. And while I haven’t done the 20 day challenge in many years, as I sit here thinking through my daily challenges, I’m realizing I live the challenge every day! Finding, developing and implementing solutions that will work for you will be very different than mine have been. That said, the best encouragement I can give you is to never be afraid to step out, try new things, and be open to new coaches. If you or your staff are the classroom, or handson type, the OLA has a wide range of educational programs available this year. If you learn better through hearing the stories of others and how they’ve overcome their obstacles, our evening meetings are a great source for gathering information and networking. I suggest you join us for a few of these options to see just what motivates you. A little confession I have to make: I never realized just how far our magazine reaches beyond our membership. I was amazed to hear that while The Growing Concern is published for our members, it helps and encourages many others in our profession. If you are not a member of the OLA, but recieve a complimentary issue from time-to-time, I encourage you to join and take advantage of the other services we provide. Happy spring! This winter has been a challenge, but we survive. We know the tasks in front of us, so with an encouraging tone, some pep in our step and a smile on our face, let’s continue making our customers’ little slice of the world more appealing! Always, Marie McConnell
6 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
OLA MEETING ANNOUNCEMENT
MEETING INFORMATION HELD AT ST. MICHAEL’S WOODSIDE 5025 EAST MILL ROAD BROADVIEW HEIGHTS, OH AGENDA (MARCH 8, 2018) REGISTRATION / NETWORKING FOOD / CASH BAR 6:00 PM TO 7:00 PM MEETING & PROGRAM 7:00 PM TO 9:00 PM COST TO ATTEND OLA MEMBERS: FREE NON-MEMBERS: $30
LEARNING FROM YOUR PEERS: A SERIES OF ROUNDTABLE DISCUSSIONS March 8th, 2018 Social networking. Online education. Webinars. Forums. On-line meetings. LinkedIn. Virtual conferences. The opportunities for professionals to meet, learn and network have increased exponentially. The Internet creates a time-saving and cost-efficient medium for busy professionals and the firms for which they work. It is important to remember though, the value provided when people gather together in-person to share ideas and learn from one another – the good, “oldfashioned” way. The purpose of our Ultimate Networking Roundtable Meeting is to bring our industry together – as a group of forward-thinking companies and individuals – to actively discuss, share opinions on, and strategize towards solving the issues currently facing our profession. This year, our (3) sessions will focus on the following topics, among others:
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Join your peers, March 8th at St. Michael’s Woodside, for this unique opportunity to sit across from your employees, vendors, industry experts and even competition as we continue the process of bettering the profession of Landscaping. Who knows better than someone who has walked in your shoes? IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN MODERATING ONE OF THE TABLES AT THIS YEAR’S MEETING, OR HAVE SUGGESTIONS FOR TOPICS YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE COVERED, PLEASE CONTACT THE OLA AT 440.717.0002, OR EMAIL US AT INFO@OHIOLANDSCAPERS.ORG PRIOR TO MARCH 1st.
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PEREN N I AL FOCUS
BOBBIE SCHWARTZ, FAPLD Bobbie’s Green Thumb The red stems of Variegated Japanese Fleeceflower’s are very colorful and add to the overall interest of the plant.
JAZZING UP THE PERENNIAL GARDEN VARIEGATED PERENNIALS FOR SUN
This month, I am continuing the discussion on jazzing up the garden by featuring perennials with variegated foliage for sun. I’m going to start with Fallopia japonica ‘Variegata’ (Variegated Japanese Fleece Flower) because it will actually thrive and keep its variegation in either sun or shade. What will be different is the color of the variegation. In sun, the background color of the foliage is bright white but in partial shade it is cream. In either situation, the leaf is stippled with green and pink. Like all knotweeds, this one is rhizomatous and the rate of spread depends on the moisture level of the soil. I have some in dry shade in my fence bed where it has barely moved. I have more in my moist front bed where I have to edit. Hardy to zone 4, this perennial wants to grow 6 feet tall so it is best used at the back of a bed. In mid to late October, sprays of white (the fleece) appear.
Heliopsis ‘Loraine Sunshine’, hardy to zone 3, is a compact, clump-forming, upright perennial that typically grows 2 to 3 feet tall and is most noted for its variegated foliage that is very white with green veins. This perennial does have single, daisy-like, yellow flowers above stiff stems that seldom need staking and bloom from mid-summer until frost. However, even though the flowers don’t start blooming until mid-July, the striking variegation attracts the eye early in the season. Although drought tolerant, this False Sunflower will repeat bloom more often if given regular watering. I would place it in the middle of a border. continued on page 10 The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 9
PEREN N I AL FOCUS
Heliopsis helianthoides ‘Loraine Sunshine’ is a remarkable and extremely handsome summer-flowering perennial, forming an upright bushy clump of coarse leaves, nearly white with strong green markings or veins.
continued from page 9 On the other hand, I would plant Iris pallida ‘Variegata’ (Dalmatian Vareigated Iris), hardy to zone 4, at the front of a border. Its grey-green and white variegated leaves are quite wide but short, only 12 inches high. The late May/early June flowers are pale lavender, but are gone in the blink of an eye. Nevertheless, clumps of this Iris really make a statement in the landscape. There is an apartment building near me with some beds in front of it that are left to the mercies of Mother Nature. The clumps of this Iris are thriving in spite of neglect. I grow mine in full sun with regular irrigation but the books say that it can be grown in partial shade. One of the most striking uses of this plant I have ever seen was at Blooms of Bressingham in England where it was combined with Kniphofia ‘Little Maid’ and the annual orange Arctotis ‘Flame’.
used in clients’ gardens. Hardy to zone 5, it is quite drought tolerant but will thrive as well in irrigated gardens as long as it has excellent drainage. This cultivar only grows 12 inches high but is in bloom from late June until frost. I have never felt the need to deadhead it. Spring is almost upon us and I hope you find this discussion helpful. Bobbie Schwartz, FAPLD, owner of Bobbie’s Green Thumb in Shaker Hts., Ohio, is a landscape designer, consultant, freelance writer, and lecturer whose specialties are perennial gardens and four season landscapes. In addition to being an Ohio Landscape Association (OLA) member, she is an active member of the Ohio Nursery and Landscape Association (ONLA) and Perennial Plant Association (PPA). Bobbie is a Past President of the Association of Professional
Some cultivars of Gaura, sometimes known as Wand Flower, are variegated but the variegation is red and purple rather than green and white. ‘Passionate Rainbow’ is one that I have
10 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
Landscape Designers (APLD). Bobbie’s new book, Garden Renovation: Transform Your Yard into the Garden of Your Dreams, was published in November 2017 by Timber Press.
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The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 11
OLA EDUCATION SERIES
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Production and maintenance landscape foremen have unique needs as they have to wear two hats: a worker and a leader. Foremen have to walk the fine line in working side by side with the employee and having to direct, motivate and critique at the same time. Managing former peers and friends can be especially difficult, dealing with problems and obstacles can take skills that can only be developed by stepping out of the work environment for a few days, learning best practices, applying it in a learning environment through role play, and then going back and applying it on the job. In this dynamic seminar, foremen will learn: • The central role of the “worker-leader” • How to supervise friends, peers, and former equals • How to communicate with their superiors • How to generate accountability from their team • How to motivate and delegate at the same time
ARMANDO ACTIS / PROFESSOR Professor Actis provides management, inside sales & public relation training based on his education & experience in the landscaping & construction industry at Rendel’s Inc, where he is currently the Training & Project Manager for the Joliet Branch. He provides end user operation, application and maintenance training – training anyone from the casual user to the professionals in OSHA, safe & correct usage of landscaping and construction equipment He was Equipment Manager and judge for ILCA’s (Illinois Landscape Contractors Association) Certified Landscape Technician exams at Joliet Junior College.
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2018 FOREMAN TRAINING / REGISTRATION CLOSES 03/05/18 Company Contact Address City State Phone (______)
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MICHAEL J. DONNELLAN King Financial, Inc.
WHY INVEST? To many people – including experienced investors – the investment scene is a maze of products and possibilities. You can choose from an enormous array of stocks, bonds, mutual funds, metals, real estate, commodities, options, foreign securities and other products. Which one should you pick? Which investment will help you achieve your financial goals? Which investments take into account your particular tolerance for risk? So many questions. So why should you invest at all? If you are not careful, and even if you are, you could lose all of your money. The question has two main answers. First, only by investing wisely can most people reach their financial goals. Too often, people spend everything they earn and have nothing left over to meet their long-term financial objectives, such as purchasing a home, sending their children to college or retirement. Investing offers the possibility of a second source of funds. While you work at one job, your money is working at another. The second answer can be summed up in one word – inflation. Inflation is defined as a general rise in the price of goods and services over a period of time. This could be the increase of
a gallon of milk from $3.00 to $3.25 a month later, or a car from $35,000 to $36,000. So, the dollar you earned today is worth less than the dollar you earned a month ago. This becomes a cumulative process: This year’s dollar is worth less than last year’s and, if inflation continues, next year’s dollar will be worth less than this year’s. Unless your income rises at or above the rate of inflation, you will be unable to keep up with prices. Inflation occurs to some extent almost constantly. The U.S. Government tracks inflation annually, and it is common for prices to rise 2 to 4 percent a year. (For a time in the 1970s, inflation was running at 10 to 12 percent per year.) Investing, then, is an effort to stay ahead of inflation by attaining a return significantly higher than inflation.
continued on page 15
The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 13
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14 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
FI SCAL FI TN ESS continued from page 13
People are accustomed to thinking about their savings in terms of goals: retirement, college, a down payment, or a vacation. But as you build and manage your asset allocation – regardless of which goal you’re pursuing – there are two important things to consider. The first is the number of years until you expect to need the money – also known as your time horizon. The second is your attitude toward risk – also known as your risk tolerance. For instance, think about a goal that’s 25 years away, like retirement. Because your time horizon is fairly long, you may be willing to take on additional risk in pursuit of long-term growth, under the assumption that you’ll usually have time to regain lost ground in the event of a short-term market decline. In that case, a higher exposure to domestic and international stocks may be appropriate. But here’s where your risk tolerance becomes a factor. Regardless of your time horizon, you should only take on a level of risk with which you’re comfortable. So even if you’re saving for a longterm goal, if you’re more risk-averse you may want to consider a more balanced portfolio with some fixed income investments. And, regardless of your time horizon and risk tolerance – even if you’re pursuing the most aggressive asset allocation models – you may want to consider including a fixed income component to help reduce the overall volatility of your portfolio.
assets to help reduce your exposure to higher-risk investments in favor of more conservative ones, like bond or money market funds. This can help mitigate the impact of extreme market swings on your portfolio, which is important when you expect to need the money relatively soon. Once you’ve entered retirement, a large portion of your portfolio should be in more stable, lower-risk investments that can potentially generate income. But even in retirement, diversification is key to helping you manage risk. At this point in your life, your biggest risk is outliving your assets. After all, even in retirement you might need a certain exposure to growthoriented investments to combat inflation and help ensure your assets last for what could be a decades-long retirement. Regardless of your goal, your time horizon, or your risk tolerance, a diversified portfolio is the foundation of any smart investment strategy. Michael J. Donnellan is President of King Financial, Inc. specializing in stock selection and retirement planning. Feel free to contact him with any questions or comments at the M3 Wealth Management office at 17601 W. 130th Street – Suite 1 in North Royalton, Ohio. Phone number (440) 652-6370 Email: donnellan@ m3wealthmanagement.com Securities and advisory services offered through L.M. Kohn & Company
The other thing to remember about your time horizon is that it’s constantly changing. So, let’s say your retirement is now 10 years away instead of 25 years – you may want to reallocate your
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The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 15
FOR SAFETY SAK E
DAMAGED UTILITY LINES COULD COST YOU AND YOUR COMPANY PREVENT IT AND SAVES LIVES BY CALLING 811
Fire and rescue crews respond to an emergency and find flames shooting from an area where a landscape contractor has been digging holes for fence posts. The incident occurs when the contractor strikes a gas line. Estimated damages approach $10,000 and include melted vinyl siding, water damage and a burned section of fence. Damage to underground utility lines is the biggest risk when landscapers and others fail to call 811 before they dig. Some may not know that it’s the law in Ohio or that utility lines could be buried just inches below the surface. Others fail to make the call because they don’t want to wait 24 to 48 hours before beginning their projects.
16 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
Regardless of the reason, the Ohio Revised Code states that anyone who plans to disrupt the soil with equipment or even a shovel must call 811 at least 48 hours before digging. A call to 811 is free, easy and it’s the law. continued on page 18
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OUPS PROVIDES VITAL UTILITIES LINK The Ohio Utilities Protection Service (OUPS) is a not-forprofit public safety organization serving as a communication link between utility companies and individuals planning any type of digging project. Everyone planning to dig should call 811 in advance. Once the call is made, OUPS assigns the call a ticket number and works with all utilities to ensure their lines are marked. After the 48-hour time period, the individual making the call is responsible for confirming all lines have indeed been marked and it is safe to dig. This process is called confirming positive response. You may confirm positive response after 48 hours via either of these methods: • Use the OUPS app, which is free to download on Apple and Android; or • Call 1-800-445-3894
18 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
It’s important to delay digging until every utility responds to the locate request. And, the locate request should always include the scope of the entire project. If your plans call for digging in the homeowner’s front and back yards, for example, the locate request submitted must include both areas. In addition, you must call 811 and get your own ticket – you cannot piggyback on another contractor’s or a homeowner’s ticket. Damaging a utility line is not only dangerous but it’s expensive and whoever causes the damage is responsible for all related costs, which include sending a utility crew to the site to repair the line and repairing or replacing damaged property. Some utilities also use a loss of service formula when determining costs associated with damaged lines. The utility estimates how much of the service (gas, in our case) customers would have used during the time required to make the repair and bills the expense to the person who caused the damage.
KNOW THE CODES You may receive one of these positive response codes when confirming positive response via the OUPS app.
Marked (responsibility of privately owned utility).
Excavation request could not be completed – facility owner/locator will contact the landscaper directly.
As you complete your project, watch for other facilities that are part of our system. Landscape crews working with shovels and other tools often damage the following types of facilities:
Excavation request could not be completed – bad address or incorrect street information, a new ticket is requested.
High profile facility – facility/owner requests to be present for excavation.
First cut regulator – Use extreme caution when working near this type of equipment as it is used on high-pressure service lines. Regulator damage frequently occurs during snow removal.
Joint meet/large project – will coordinate with the excavator.
Design ticket – contractor was notified by the facility owner.
Work has been completed upon arrival.
COLUMBIA GAS GROUND RULES Columbia Gas of Ohio has ground rules to help homeowners, landscapers and other professionals work safely. Call 811 before you dig – Calling 811 is the only way to confirm the location of all utility lines before you start a project. Even if you notice aboveground marker posts, you should never rely on these to indicate the exact location of the utility lines.
continued on page 20
The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 19
FOR SAFETY SAKE continued from page 19
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Farm tap meter setting – Exercise extra caution, especially during snow removal, because this type of setting could be low to high pressure. Marker poles – Take extra care to avoid damaging or removing these poles and the tracer wire as they identify the location of an underground pipe. Weed trimmers and edgers tend to be lethal to tracer wires. The utility industry also uses markings such as paint and flags to identify buried utilities. Please leave these markings in place.
In the event you damage a utility line during your work, stop what you are doing, move to a safe location and call 911 and Columbia Gas of Ohio (800-344-4977) immediately.
perennials ferns vines
Smell and Tell – An emergency situation exists any time you smell natural gas. Because natural gas is odorless, colorless and tasteless in its native state, the gas industry adds nontoxic mercaptan to gas distribution systems. You’ll know when mercaptan is present because it smells like rotten eggs.
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You may also notice other signs of a natural gas leak while working on a project, including a hissing or blowing noise, bubbling in the dirt, and wilted or dead vegetation.
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I know of an incident involving a contractor that was burying lines and struck a natural gas line. The contractor was unaware of the resulting leak and covered the line with clay soil from the surrounding area. The clay was dense enough to hold the leak for a couple of weeks, but gas always takes the path of least resistance and the problem was detected when the gas surfaced and someone noticed bubbling in the dirt. Evacuate the area immediately any time you detect natural gas. Do not wait to shut down vehicles or equipment and avoid any actions that could create static electricity. Even simple things like using a cell phone could cause the gas to ignite. Call 911 and Columbia Gas of Ohio at 1-800-344-4077 only after you have reached a safe distance.
SAFETY IS EVERYONE’S RESPONSIBILITY Columbia Gas of Ohio makes safety its top priority every day and we invite you to be our partners in safety. Call 811 before any excavation project. It’s free, it’s easy and it’s the law. Submitted by Sam Schafer, Director of System Operations, Columbia Gas of Ohio
20 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association12/16/2015
0116 Klyn Half.indd 1
PL ANTOLA OF TH E M ON TH SERIES EDUCATION
COURSE DATE APRIL 5, 2018
LOCATION INDIANA WESLEYAN UNIV. 4100 ROCKSIDE ROAD INDEPENDENCE, OH 44131
Join us for Commercial Driver’s License Training and learn the information you need to know to pass the state CDL test. Back by demand, and instructed by a former truck driver, this interactive course will include videos and handouts that will cover:
AGENDA 8:30AM – 9:00AM REGISTRATION / BREAKFAST
• • •
9:00AM – 3:00 PM CLINIC
A truck and trailer will be on site so that attendees receive a hands-on, pre-trip training session. All registrations include continental breakfast and lunch. Attendees will need to come prepared for both indoor and outdoor classroom. Please note: This course is not intended to teach anyone to back a trailer, or drive on the road.
COST MEMBERS BEFORE 03/22/18 - $129 AFTER 03/22/18 - $159 NON MEMBERS BEFORE 03/22/18 - $179 AFTER 03/22/18 - $209
GET HELP PASSING THE STATE CDL TEST
State Pre-Trip Inspection State Yard Skills State Road Test
Daryl Lengyel is a former truck driver and the owner/president of CDL Training Consultants. CDL Training Consultants has been in business since 1990 and Daryl has been a valued member of the OLA for over 18 years. He is a former state test examiner who has been helping train employees on the steps to obtaining their CDL liscense for many years, specializing in commercial drivers license training and driver’s safety training. CDL Training Consultants is located in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.
INSTRUCTED BY DARYL LENGYEL Cancellations made 8 to 14 days prior to the course start date will be subject to a 30% cancellation fee. NO refunds will be issued for cancellations 7 days or less prior to the course, no shows, or cancellations on the day of the course. If, for any reason, the course is cancelled, enrollees will be notified, and fees refunded in full.
2018 CDL TRAINING CLINIC / REGISTRATION CLOSES 03/29/18 Company Contact Address City State Phone (______)
Fax (______) Email
NAME OF ATTENDEE (S)
Check No. (Enclosed)
Charge to my:
Acct. No. Name on Card
Billing Address + Zipcode for Card 5 CEU’S
MasterCard Visa AMEX Discover
REGISTER ONLINE AT OHIOLANDSCAPERS.ORG/EDUCATION/CDLTRAINING
THE CORE ELEMENTS
TO BUSINESS SUCCESS
CORE #3 / GETTING THE BUSINESS
Last month, we completed the processes of CORE 2 – Running the Business. This article starts our series on CORE 3 – Getting the Business. Over the next 3 months, we will cover Branding, Marketing and Sales. The reason we start with Branding is a lesson I’ve learned over years. Most landscape owners want to improve their revenue generation – sales. However, making the website generate leads and making the phone ring are marketing problems – and the challenge of marketing is in the message. What story do you need to tell to generate qualified leads? It is the story of your Brand. Effective branding provides a unique snapshot of your company, its products/services, and its personnel. If every landscape company looks the same, how does the customer make an informed buying decision? That’s easy – they go to price. Because of social media, branding has changed over the last decade. A single branding statement is no longer adequate because of all the ways in which we can interact with our potential clients. The most successful businesses today have 3 levels of branding: The Company, The Company’s Products/ Services, The Company’s Owner/Key People.
Company Brand The Company Brand provides an umbrella of sorts – a summary of who you are and what you are about. Its purpose is to make an emotional connection with potential customers. Great brands become a part of the customer’s buying decision because they instill a belief in them about what your company stands for. Typically, this information is used to tell your story on your Home page, or About Us page.
In order to make an emotional connection, the company’s brand should cover the following concepts: How was the company created? What is its motto or tagline? Are there symbols associated with it that give meaning (e.g., logos). What specific role does your company play in the customer’s world? As it applies to your website, it is extremely helpful to uses several distinctive keywords for Search Engine Optimization (SEO) when writing these descriptions.
Product/Service Brands The Product/Service Brand is a name, term, and/or symbols that give your products/services an identity. Its purpose is to make a rational connection with potential customers. When used on a website’s product/service page, it should explain how your products and services uniquely satisfy your potential customer’s needs. To make this rational connection, the Service/ Product Brands should contain the following elements: A name that is self-explanatory; a quick description of its benefit; a symbol(s) that supports the name; a description of how the product/service addresses a pain point in the customer’s world. Again, several distinctive words used as keywords for SEO are recommended.
WILLIAM EASTMAN GreenMark Consulting Group Owner Brand Finally, The Owner Brand is a new wrinkle driven by social media. It is used to make a personal connection between potential customers and the thought leaders within your company, and has several elements. Through the use of social media, it can be made much more translucent what the roots of your company look like, what the underlying business philosophy is, what credentials you and your employees have that show authority, your abilities and uniqueness, and maybe most importantly of all – what relevant/ common associations you share. The key issue of the Owner Brand is to reduce the risk first-time buyers must overcome to buy from you.
Summary The days of hiring an expensive branding consultant are over. Every business owner can – in one day – create a unique and powerful brand that attracts the right customers. Stop trying to sell your “offer” and start selling yourself by using your website and social media outlets to find buyers. For more information contact William Eastman@833.RUGREEN or join us at the OLA BootCamp on February 22nd.
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www.masonsteel.com The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 23
PL ANT OF TH E M ON TH
JIM FUNAI, LIC Cuyahoga Community College
SHELLEY FUNAI, LIC Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens Visually, the best way to tell variety Phaenerolepis from the straight species is by inspecting the cones. The cones of all Abies are neat, in that they are held upright at the ends of the branches like little footballs, ready to be kicked.
ABIES BALSAMEA VARIETY PHANEROLEPIS CANAAN FIR
We’ve had a lot of feedback on our January article cautioning against planting too many Blue Spruce, with a lot of people agreeing that they’ve seen a decline in the health of their Blue Spruce plantings. Many of those same people asked us what we thought would be an appropriate replacement for Blue Spruce, which is a question that requires careful discussion. As with all our species, limiting pest issues (Dutch Elm and Emerald Ash Borer, for example) we must seek a handful of replacement plants – not just one. So, today we want to share an alternative that we feel is a good replacement, but beg you not to think of it as the only replacement. continued on page 26
24 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
Since 1986, VanCuren Tree Services has been Northeast Ohio’s complete tree care specialist. We provide comprehensive services for any residential, commercial, or utility tree care need. The tree professionals at VanCuren Tree Services have helped home and business owners throughout Greater Cleveland and Northeast Ohio maintain the beauty, vitality, and safety of their trees. We are proud to offer a full range of tree care services, from tree and stump removal to storm damage clean up to utility work and beyond.
To find out more about what VanCuren has to offer, visit our website at www.vancurentreecare.com, or call us at 440.338.5005 today for a free consultation.
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Firs are truly awesome trees. We’ve been lucky enough to walk through a number of Central European forests and have marveled at the towering, managed stands of Native Silver Fir (Abies alba), and Noble Fir (Abies procera) – a native of the western U.S., but imported as a timber species to Czech forests. Walking in acres of 80 foot-plus tall firs is hard to describe using any other word than magical. The scent of fir, somewhat citrus like, is in the air and everything is quiet and bathed in a deep green light.
continued from page 24
One of the drawbacks of Northeast Ohio is that we don’t have much in the way of native, needle-leaf evergreens to turn to. As we discussed in January, the difficulty with Blue Spruce is that it does not like our ecosystem and actually suffers from it. When seeking plants that can fill the design role of a Blue Spruce, we need to look for plants that can tolerate our soil and climate. We are suggesting Canaan Fir as a good alternative, with a note that you will sacrifice the deep blues for deep greens, with a tint of blue. Depending on which “authority” you consult, the taxonomy of Canaan Fir differs. The most likely scenario – in our opinion – starts well over 10,000 years ago as the Wisconsin Ice Age was in decline. With a much colder climate than today, a number of Fir species thrived deep into the southern ranges of the Appalachian Mountains. As the climate warmed, these Firs became isolated in pockets of high elevations, developing slight differences from their common ancestors. Today, these natural varieties can be split into three groups of Abies balsamea. A. balsamea var. balsamea (Balsam Fir), A. balsamea var. phanerolepis (Canaan Fir), and A. balsamea var. fraseri (Fraser Fir). The majority, including Dr. Dirr, place Fraser Fir as a separate species, Abies fraseri, which is likely more for ease of discussion than true taxonomic honesty. The scent of the sap is unmistakable, and when dried, has a rich, spiced-scent that has been used as incense, as well as a “balm,” or topically applied ointment. Use as a balm led to one common name, Balsam Fir – or Southern Balsam Fir – in the case of Fraser. Another name is “Balm of Gilead,” which has deep religious ties for Christians, Jews, and Muslims. As the common name passed down from different languages – and through centuries – it became hard to track the exact path of the name. The first mention we can find of this balm comes from Genesis 37:25 “as they sat down to eat their meal, they looked up and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites coming from Gilead. Their camels were loaded with spices, balm, and myrrh.” Gilead was a region in present-day Jordon which had a native plant that produced a
26 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
PL ANT OF TH E M ON TH very rich scented sap that was believed to have healing properties and was applied to the skin as a “balm.” There are mentions of Balm of Gilead, or Balsam, in ancient Egyptian texts, Arabic writings, and even in the first agriculture textbook written by the Roman, Pliny the Elder. While Abies balsamea does not grow in Jordon – being native to North America – it received its name from Carl Linnaeus himself, for the similarity in scent to the original plant, Commiphora gileadensis (Arabian Balsam Tree), which is from the same family of plants which frankincense and myrrh are made from. We recommend the use of A. balsamea var. phaenerolepis for the ecosystem it evolved in. Fraser Fir is a great tree and grows well in Ohio. In fact, the national champion resides here in Ohio, though it really excels in the sandier soils and high elevations of North Carolina. Fraser does not do so well in heavy clay soils. Balsam Fir is also a beautiful tree with great ornamental value, but prefers a colder climate and usually suffers in our summer heat and humidity. Most Balsams are found north of Ohio. Enter the Canaan Fir. In the northeast corner of West Virginia, just below the Maryland border, is the Canaan Valley. It is in this region that this ecotype of Abies balsamea evolved. Visually, the best way to tell variety Phaenerolepis from the straight species is by inspecting the cones. The cones of all Abies are neat, in that they are held upright at the ends of the branches like little footballs, ready to be kicked. Scales of the Balsam Fir cone do not have an awn (bristle) that extends past the scales of the cone,
while Canaan Fir seeds do. In fact, the Greek origin of the name is phaner (conspicuous) and lepis (scale), which describes the longer projecting awn on the scales. Canaan Fir has the ability to adapt to Northern and Central Ohio soils and climate better than either the Fraser or Balsam Fir. Expect the tree to grow to about 30 to 40 feet tall and stay within 20 feet wide at the bottom of the pyramidal habit. While it does prefer a deep, loamy soil, it has the ability to adapt without compromising vitality. Canaan Firs are very uniform in growth habit and make a good screen planting, or grouping in the background of a landscape. It would be wise to limit exposure to salt and harsh winter winds, as this would introduce additional stress to the plant. If you are familiar with the overall aesthetics of the Fraser Fir, expect Canaan to be nearly identical. To tell the difference between the two we typically go by scent. Fraser seems to be the least aromatic of the Balsam Firs. Next time you are ready to go to the old standby Blue Spruce, consider subbing in Canaan Fir and see how you like it. We’re betting you find another great plant to help diversify our great landscapes that we work so hard to create. Jim Funai is full-time faculty at Cuyahoga Community College, a NALP accredited associate of applied science in hoticulture degree program. He is pursuing a PhD in Landscape Engineering and Forestry and is a Licensed Arborist. Shelley Funai is Grounds Manager at Stan Hywett Hall and Gardens in Akron, Ohio, which offers a historic estate designed by Warren H. Manning and a beautiful manor house museum. She is Landscape Industry Certified in Ornamental Plant Care.
The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 27
FEATURE ARTI CLE
Guest-Worker Crisis Worries Landscaping Industry ADRIAN HIGGINS / THE WASHINGTON POST / JAN 22, 2018 VIA GREENINDUSTRYPROS.COM
For three days each January, landscapers stroll the aisles of the Baltimore Convention Center, kicking the tires of ride-on mowers, ordering trees for the spring planting season, and generally looking for suppliers who can help them trim costs and increase business in the season ahead. This year, they were drawn to a new exhibitor at the MidAtlantic Nursery Trade Show. A lawyer named Kara Youngblood spent the hours fielding questions from a raft of green-industry employers grappling with a crisis at least as worrying as the economic downturn a decade ago. “The landscape companies I have met here are livid,” she said. The object of their anger? Uncle Sam. In 2016, Congress failed to renew a provision of immigration law. The result was a significant reduction in the number of foreign temporary workers who are granted H-2B visas. Previously, workers who had earlier received a visa, which allows them to work up to 10 months per year in the United States, could return to their employers without coming under the annual limit.
Youngblood said the action – or inaction – effectively lowered the number of H-2B workers from about 350,000 to the annual cap of 66,000. It is from this smaller pool that landscapers must compete with all other industry sectors for foreign workers. Half of them are admitted from October to March, further shrinking the availability of workers when landscapers need them. “What’s happening now, you’re that landscape guy bringing over a foreman for 10 years and you weren’t worried about him getting that visa – now that just didn’t happen,” she said. “It’s a gamble.” Foreign workers employed by nurseries and production greenhouses are considered agricultural employees and are admitted under the related H-2A visa program. There is no continued on page 31
28 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
PL A N T O F T HE
MEETING DATE MARCH 28, 2018 HELD AT WOLF CREEK COMPANY 6700B HUNTLEY ROAD COLUMBUS, OHIO 43229 AGENDA REGISTRATION NETWORKING & FOOD 6:00 PM TO 7:00 PM MEETING & PROGRAM 7:00 PM TO 8:30 PM COST TO ATTEND OLA MEMBERS: FREE NON-MEMBERS: $30*
CENTRAL OHIO MEETING
Drones & the Landscaping Industry In late 2014, Green Scene Landscaping & Pools, a Los Angeles-based design and construction firm specializing in high-end landscapes, announced that it had begun using a quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) equipped with a high-resolution camera to capture aerial landscape images. Fast forward to 2018 and videography for promotional purposes seems to be the fastest-growing use for small unmanned aircraft in the landscape industry. Small landscape, tree care or irrigation businesses typically hire an FAA-certified company specializing in professional aerial photography on a project-by-project basis. There are good reasons for doing so, liability being a big one since these professionals typically have property and casualty insurance. Our guest speaker will discuss: • •
Rules for flying drones commercially Barriers to entry for flying drones
Recommended drones & technology Other uses for drone technology
* FIRST TIME NON-MEMBERS MAY ATTEND FOR FREE
ZACHARY ELLIOT CO-OWNER OF LOSTPEAK MEDIA / FAA CERTIFIED DRONE (UAS) PILOT
LostPeak Media is a Drone Services Company (DSC) based out of Cincinnati, Ohio, focus on providing aerial solutions to their client using drone technology and software applications. With a background in aviation & law, Zachary’s diverse experience allows him to bring a new perspective to the DSC table. Building a business in the burgeoning drone/UAS industry has given him a new respect for the need to have regulatory compliance alongside the ability to provide nimble and flexible services to clients.
FOR PAYING NON-MEMBER ATTENDEES: Cancellations made 8 to 14 days prior to the meeting will be subject to a 30% cancellation fee. NO refunds will be issued for cancellations 7 days or less prior to the meeting, no shows, or cancellations on the day of the meeting. If, for any reason, the meeting is cancelled, paying non-members will be notified, and fees refunded in full.
2018 CENTRAL OHIO SPRING MEETING / REGISTER BY 03/21/18 Company Contact Address City State Phone (______)
Fax (______) Email
NAME OF ATTENDEE (S) * FIRST TIME NON-MEMBERS MAY ATTEND FOR FREE
Check No. (Enclosed)
Charge to my:
Acct. No. Name on Card
Billing Address + Zipcode for Card CEU’S
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REGISTER ONLINE AT OHIOLANDSCAPERS.ORG/EDUCATION/COLUMBUSSPRINGMEETING
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VISIT WWW.OLIGERSEED.COM 30 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
FEATURE ARTI CLE
continued from page 28 cap on those visas, but nursery growers say labor shortages among landscape contractors will harm growth across the industry. Under both programs, employers must show they first tried to recruit American workers. The common refrain from the landscape industry is that the demand for labor outstrips the supply – people generally don’t want to work in physically demanding jobs outside in the elements. “It’s cheaper to hire somebody down the street” than a foreigner, Youngblood said. “If that were an option, they would.” She is based in McMinnville, in central Tennessee, a major region for ornamental-plant production in the United States. The lower numbers, of course, do not convey the human stories, the bonds between family-owned businesses and their returning workers, most of whom come from Mexico and Central America. President Donald Trump has made immigrants a target from his populist platform, although Youngblood said the Obama
administration “very quietly” waged a concerted campaign of deportation of undocumented immigrants. The current risk of mass deportations of immigrants under temporary protected status and DACA programs is likely to compound the problems facing landscapers, said Youngblood, whose firm has opened an office in a Washington suburb for lobbying purposes. At the trade show last week, Youngblood’s booth was sandwiched between a woody-plant grower and a manufacturer of plastic seed trays. Surveying the showgoers, she said, “I’m pretty sure most here aren’t going to get [enough] workers and don’t know what they are going to do.” She may have been speaking of Andreas Grothe, who runs New World Gardens, a small landscape company in Parkton, Maryland, that builds and maintains gardens. He said he paid an agency $9,000 to process three H-2B workers who were supposed to start March 1 but they didn’t get their visas, and he must now pay an additional $1,200 to see whether he can get them for April 1. continued on page 32 The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 31
F EATURE ARTI CLE continued from page 31
“These are people who worked for me in the past,” he said. Due to similar problems last year, his business dropped by a third. “I had to call customers and apologize that I couldn’t do that job anymore because I couldn’t put people on the job.” The rub is that many landscapers report booming business as the economy has rebounded and their customers are cashing in on gains in the stock market. “I have plenty of jobs and business is wonderful,” Grothe said. “But the reality is that I have right now two employees, and I should have eight.” Lancaster Farms in Suffolk, Virginia, is a large-scale grower of container-grown trees, shrubs, perennials and annuals at three locations. In peak growing seasons, Art Parkerson employs 120 people, a third of them H-2A workers. “We can find [American] field workers, but they don’t want to stay field workers,” desiring instead to move into sales or other more comfortable jobs in the company, he said. About 70 percent of his stock goes to landscape contractors,
the rest to independent retailers. “A lot of our customers would grow their business significantly if they had access to labor,” he said. Directly across the trade-show aisle from Youngblood, Daniel McMahon had every expectation of a banner year. He works for a division of Ball Seed Co. that provides transplanting equipment for greenhouse growers. Standing by an automated soil-potting machine, he removed a half-inch-square plug containing a pansy seedling – one of 400 in the flat – and placed it in a retail-size tray. This single step, in which growers take purchased seedlings to grow on to consumer size, is the most profitable in the nursery trade, he said. He handed me a couple of brochures for transplanting machines. One is manually operated, costs $5,000, and allows three people to do the work of 15. The second flier was for the TTA PackPlanter, a robotic transplanter that costs $150,000 and does the work of 25 to 30 people, he said. “All the equipment companies are having the best year,” he said.
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32 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
2018 IN-HOUSE EVENT DATES
ISO PRE-AUDIT PREP:
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APRIL 23-26 & MAY 14-17 JUNE 6-7
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email@example.com (814) 455-1991 www.snowfightersinstitute.com *All OLA members receive $500 off any in-house event. Put in code: OLA when registering online or call (814) 455-1991. *Cannot be combined with any other offers. *Please call (814) 455-1991 when registering multiple attendees.
D I RECTI ON S
Executive Director The Ohio Landscape Association
OLA GARDEN The OLA had a garden at the Great Big Home and Garden Show again this February. We received a lot of great compliments on the garden from attendees about the accessibility of our garden, the colorful plantings, and the fact that we labeled our plants. We gave out a few thousand postcards promoting the use of OLA Members and our consumer website referral system. And, we were able to do all this with little or no monetary investment, thanks to those who volunteered their time and donated materials and use of equipment. GARDEN DESIGNERS Ken Sasak, Kevin Sasak & Melissa Wasik Sasak Landscaping, Inc. PROJECT MANAGER Ken Sasak Sasak Landscaping, Inc. ASSISTANT PROJECT MANAGER Kevin Sasak Sasak Landscaping, Inc.
CONSTRUCTION TEAM J.A.G. Lawn Maintenance & Landscaping Landpride Horticultural Services McCaskey Landscape Design Ohio Landscape Association Phoenix Construction Sasak Landscaping Wayne Lawn and Landscape Western Reserve Landcare
Again, many thanks to everyone involved in the garden! We appreciate all the people that came out to staff the garden as well. This is always a great opportunity to speak with the public.
34 | Official Publication of The Ohio Landscape Association
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And a special thanks to Sasak Landscaping for going above and beyond to handle all the details and create a beautiful garden for the OLA!
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ONLINE CLASSIFIEDS Looking for Classified and Help Wanted ads? Want to post one of your own? You’ll find them at ohiolandscapers.org or myohiolandscape.com. HELP WANTED ADS Help Wanted ads are posted on both our industry website and our consumer website, along with bi-monthly postings via social media. CLASSIFIED ADS (I.E. Equipment for sale) Classified ads are posted on our industry website ohiolandscapers.org COST MEMBERS: $35 plus $3 for each 10 words for 30 days. NON MEMBER: $70 plus $3 for each 10 words for 30 days. Please send all inquiries and ad content to: firstname.lastname@example.org or call the OLA office at 440-717-0002.
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Zoresco Equipment Company The Growing Concern | March 2018 | 35
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nician rtified Tech e C y tr s u d scape In 2018 Land Test Dates WRITTEN TE
Certification is an important tool for all landscape companies and individuals in the landscape field. That’s why the Landscape Industry Certified Technician program deserves your attention. A Landscape Industry Certified Technician is a proven landscape professional who has been certified through an internationally supported testing program that is administered by the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) and licensed to Ohio – a partnership of The Ohio State ATI, Ohio Landscape Association and Ohio Nursery and Landscape Association.
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By earning your Landscape Industry Certified Technician certification, you send a message to clients and employees that you meet, or exceed the industry standard. For additional Information about testing, registration, or to obtain study materials, please visit LandscapeCertifiedOhio.org, or call the Ohio State ATI at 330.287.7511, or 330.287.0100.
STAND OUT! Encouraging Professional Standards and Promoting the Green Industry
Published on Feb 20, 2018