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EDITORIAL  @landscaper_ed

Editor’s letter Learning Live at SALTEX in Birmingham taking place on 30 & 31 October. This month also sees the introduction of a regular column by Greg Bedson. Greg, a career switcher himself, having started adult life as a journalist, is a garden designer from Surrey. Through his work he has a passion for the environment and sustainability, which will be reflected in his monthly columns. We hope you enjoy! And finally, this issue marks the magazine’s first year under the ownership of Sheengate Publishing Ltd. Sales manager Jason, myself and all the team here wish to extend a huge thanks all our advertisers and those we’ve met along the way for your support and encouragement. And while we give ourselves a pat on the back, there is yet more celebration as The Landscaper Magazine title marks its 20th anniversary this year!

@landscaper_ed /TheLandscaperMagazine



Welcome to our September issue. In this issue we discover how taking up a landscaping related degree as a mature student can further prospects. Many in the profession may have left school and gone straight into the workplace, without giving a second thought for continuing their educational career, learning on the job instead. All to often a lack of confidence or an assumption that poor exam results at 16 plus means you can’t continue to higher levels, discourages people from undertaking a degree course or similar. This needn’t be the case. More and more universities and colleges are becoming more flexible by offering foundation courses and support to those who wish to return to study. So whether you are already working in the industry or wish to change career there are plenty of opportunities to expand your knowledge. But if long term study isn’t an option, those in the industry have many openings for continuing their learning through Continuing Professional Development (CPD). And with the trade show season almost upon us there will be ample opportunity to extended learning, from the CPD Accredited Seminar Programmes taking place at Landscape Industry Trade Show at Battersea on 17th & 18th September to







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The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


Loaded with benefits. Discover how the all-new Isuzu Grafter Green can work for your business.

Isuzu Grafter Green. A proper little grafter. Call us today to find out more:

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CONTENTS editor Maggie Walsh 07787 555 798 contributor Greg Bedson sales manager Jason Studd 0208 939 5600 group sales manager Stewart Turner 0208 939 5600 design and production


circulation and subscriptions Maggie Walsh

September 2019

The Landscaper is owned and published by Sheengate Publishing Ltd.

News .......................................................... 09

The Landscaper is an entirely independent magazine. It is not a member of any trade association or society. Sheengate Publishing Ltd Unit A4 Kingsway Business Park Oldfield Road, Hampton TW12 2HD 0208 939 5600

SALTEX update........................................ 18 Time to take the university challenge?............................ 20


Recruitment.............................................. 24 Nurturing young talent ....................... 26 Viewpoint ................................................. 31

managing director Alex Whitney

Horticulture ............................................. 33 Hardscaper ............................................... 34

publisher Con Crowley

Excavators ................................................ 36 Nothing in this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the publishers. Readers intending to purchase goods or services from advertisers should make their own enquiries if in any doubt. Every endeavour has been made to ensure that all the information published in this magazine is as accurate as possible. Neither the publishers nor their agents can be held responsible for any errors or omissions; nor shall they be liable for any loss or damage to any person acting on the information contained in the magazine.

Arborists ................................................... 38 Turf and groundscare .......................... 45


Copyright Š 2019

Next Month in The Landscaper SALTEX Getting ready for Winter Health & Safety Plus regular features including: Arborist, mowers, horticulture, groundscare and turf


Editorial and advert copy deadline: 20th September

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



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Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year 2019 finalists announced

The prize winners and runners-up from 2018 : Liam Pigden, Danny Patten, Daniel Ashelby and John Scurfield

The British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA), alongside Toro and Reesink Turfcare, has revealed the 11 finalists who will contest this year’s Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year Awards. The 31st hosting of the finals of the prestigious awards will take place at BIGGA House in North Yorkshire, following a nationwide search for the country’s leading student greenkeepers. A record 46 students were nominated for the Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year Award, with seven talented candidates making it through to the grand final, to be held on Monday 9 and Tuesday 10 September 2019. Up for grabs will also be the fourth Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year Award, which is only open to qualifying students under the age of 20 at the time they were nominated. Four candidates have been invited to attend the finals. The Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists are: 1. Thomas Bird, Sutton Coldfield 2. Daryn Curtis, Farleigh Court 3. James Dawson, Oulton Hall 4. Vince DeMarzo, The Wisley 5. Jason Norwood, Rudding Park 6. Matthew Strudwick, Royal Norwich 7. Nicholas Turner, Royal Dornoch The Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year finalists are: 1. Tom Bromfield, Trentham 2. Josh Marshall, The Worcestershire 3. Sam Richards, Sherborne 4. Lewis Westwood, Celtic Manor The Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year winner will

receive an eight-week all expenses paid scholarship to America, including a six-week residential turf management study course at the University of Massachusetts, a trip to the Golf Industry Show in Orlando, Florida and a visit to Toro’s facilities. The Toro Young Student Greenkeeper of the Year winner will receive a work experience placement at the exclusive Vidauban Golf Club in southern France. They will also receive a trip to Continue to Learn at BTME and enjoy a five-night package that includes hotel, four days of education, travel and £125 expenses, plus a Toro training voucher. Stuart Green, head of member learning at BIGGA, said: “At a time when golf clubs are finding it increasingly difficult to attract the next generation of greenkeepers in to the profession, I’m delighted that we had more nominations than ever before for the Toro Student Greenkeeper of the Year Awards. The extremely high standard of candidates that we interviewed reinforced what a fantastic and rewarding profession this can be. David Cole, Reesink Turfcare managing director and award sponsor, said: “In 2019 we are celebrating Toro’s centennial milestone serving the golf industry and that gives me pause to reflect on the current ‘state of greenkeeping’ and in particular the longevity of The Toro Student Greenkeeper Awards. From what I see and hear from this year’s crop of participants and finalists, the future is bright. This is evidenced not only by a focused mind-set and commitment to learn from so many early on in their working life, but also by increasing numbers of students who have made significant career changes later in their working life. Both are committing and investing wholeheartedly in their greenkeeping futures.”

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Retail leader Sir Terry Leahy headlines Cultivating Retail British businessman, Sir Terry Leahy, will Creating a sustainable future for the top the programme at the Cultivating garden industry is the key theme behind Retail conference which takes place this year’s Cultivating Retail event, which is on 19 November 2019 at East Midlands jointly hosted by the Horticultural Trades Conference Centre at Nottingham Association (HTA) and Garden Industry University. The former Chief Executive of Manufacturers Association (GIMA) and Tesco PLC, who has an active interest in sponsored by Evergreen Garden Care. the garden industry as a shareholder of Bringing together retailers, suppliers and Dobbies, will talk about the opportunities growers the event, hosted by journalist and and interest around horticulture and broadcaster Daisy McAndrew, provides a draw on his experiences to talk about mix of strategic and inspirational content. sustainability and the customer. The programme will include the latest Sir Terry Leahy HTA Chairman James Barnes comments: consumer attitudes and thoughts on what “We are delighted that Sir Terry will be joining our sustainability means for the garden industry including key Cultivating Retail programme, which focusses on topics such as biosecurity, growing media, plastics, labour/ sustainability issues facing the garden industry. This skills, water and pesticides, and at the same time what a provides a unique opportunity for all of us to hear from significant role our industry can play in delivering the UK’s one of the key business leaders of our time and his environmental plans and climate change ambitions. thoughts on some of the opportunities within horticulture, For more details about speakers and to book a place at supply chains and how issues around sustainability might the event visit or email influence the consumer.”

Groot Groen Plus international trade fair returns this October Groot Groen Plus, the international trade fair for nursery stock, takes place in Zundert the Netherlands from October 2-4 2019. Over 250 exhibitors have already signed up to this increasingly important exhibition. Visitors can meet up with suppliers of trees, shrubs, perennials and young plants. The event takes place in an area devoted and dominated by horticulture. In the Zundert area alone there are more than 140 nurseries. There are also participants from Belgium, France, Germany, Italy Russia, Poland and Switzerland. There are many exciting features to this year’s show. A fascinating sensory garden with a large seating area that incorporates all the senses. The green roof market is massive over the channel and is growing rapidly as concern about the environment increases. Dutch Greenroof are a major player and can supply all the essentials for creating the perfect green roof.


Joh.Stolwiik and Sons is one the Hollands leading growers. They sell shrubs, rhododendron/ azalea, climbers, perennials, grasses, conifers, Nursery stock at the show. and fruit Credit Joh.Stolwiik and Sons plants at highly competitive prices. This year Groot Groen Plus is offering special arrangements for UK visitors. Check out the shows web site The Landscaper editorial team will be visiting the show and reporting for our November edition.


BIG Biodiversity Challenge 2019 awards shortlist ATM for the Pollinator Award BALI Registered Contractor member, ATM has been nominated for the Pollinator Award at the prestigious BIG Biodiversity Challenge Awards 2019, alongside Highways England and Kier. The nomination is in recognition of the A38 Devon – Ivybridge to Ashburton project Turning A Roads into Bee Routes project. The scheme aims to increase habitat connectivity by linking species rich grasslands, sustain and increase pollinator populations and other invertebrates whilst increasing the resilience of terrestrial wildlife for the long-term. ATM’s Managing Director, Clive Freeman says: “We were delighted to be part of Turning A Roads into Bee Routes on the A38: Photo credit: Leonardo Gubert the Delivery

Team that carried out this exciting Biodiversity project. ATM is committed to protecting and enhancing biodiversity to provide a lasting legacy for future generations’. All the shortlisted projects and the nominees can be viewed at Voting for the 2019 BIG Biodiversity Champion opens soon. With 75+ entries across eight categories plus nominees for the BIG Biodiversity Champion Award, the judging panel at BIG Biodiversity had a tough task to narrow down this year’s shortlist. All category winners, the overall winner and the BIG Biodiversity Champion will be announced at an Awards ceremony on 12th September at the Hallam Conference Centre, in central London. The awards evening takes place on 12 September at Hallam Conference Centre, London W1W 6JJ, and is sponsored by Grosvenor, Heathrow, Kier, Sir Robert McAlpine, and overall prize sponsor Wildflower Turf Ltd.

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The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



BALI National Landscape Awards 2019 tickets now on sale Tickets for this year’s £195) or tables of 10 for £1,550 (full British Association of £1,750) and 12 £1,860 (full price Landscape Industries (BALI) £2,100) ex VAT respectively. The National Landscape Awards early bird offer is only available, the until 23 September, so act fast to largest landscaping awards take advantage of the saving. ceremony in Europe, are now The host for 2019, sport and on sale. lifestyle presenter Mark DurdenBALI National Landscape Awards 2018 With a record number of Smith, is looking forward to entries submitted since 2009, the BALI Award Adjudicators leading the ceremony on Friday 6 December at the JW have been busy over the summer judging schemes up and Marriott Grosvenor House, Park Lane, London, which also down the country, with early indications showing once again sees the return of Headline Sponsor Green-tech. a very high standard of quality has been achieved. With over 1,000 members, guests and VIPs expected to For those looking to attend at a discounted rate, early attend, tickets will sell quickly on a first-come-first-served bird tickets are available, priced at £175 per person (full price basis. To purchase your tickets, visit

Ground of App-lause A new app has been launched to help groundskeepers get plaudits for their pitch. The Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation are ramping up efforts to improve the quality of grass pitches in England with the launch of the Football Foundation Groundskeeping Community app. The new platform provides a resource of expert advice for grounds staff, enabling them to connect with peers, discover new tips and tricks and share advice on best industry practice. Users can seek guidance from the Institute of Groundsmanship’s (IOG) Regional Pitch Advisors, who are available to answer questions and update members on changes to industry standards. The system is entirely free to use and will feature regular new content, with videos from high-profile groundskeepers, such as Wembley Stadium’s Karl Standley, case studies and the latest in groundskeeping techniques. Developed in partnership with the IOG and run through Hive Learning, Europe’s leading peer learning platform, the site represents the latest step of the Football Foundation’s Grass Pitch Programme, which aims to ensure every affiliated football fixture in England is played on a quality football pitch. Karl Standley, Wembley Stadium Head Groundsman says “Whether it’s Wembley or your local community football pitch, groundkeepers all face the same challenges.


“I think it’s great that we can now all come together on this new platform to share these challenges and help each other find solutions. We are all aware of the importance of improving the state of pitches in this country and this is a great step to making a long-lasting difference.” Geoff Webb, IOG CEO says: “This is the culmination of over five years of work within our partnership with both the Football Foundation and The FA via the Grounds and Natural Turf Improvement Programme and will complement the invaluable pitchmaintenance service that the Regional Pitch Advisors provide for volunteers at grassroots football clubs. Dean Potter, Director of Grant Management at the Football Foundation, adds: “The majority of community football is played on grass pitches and it’s a priority for us that we are able to sustain this.” “We know how important football facilities are in transforming lives and bringing communities together and this platform will enable us to build a new groundskeeper community that will provide huge benefits for people across the country.” For more information, visit


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Industry stalwart launches consultancy business Industry veteran, Mark Richardson of Stewart Landscape Construction announces the formation of Mark Richardson Associates, a new landscape consultancy business that will offer the industry a broad range of experience and expertise including project management, feasibility studies and sourcing of products and services. Richardson, who has worked in the UK landscape sector for 33 years, 20 of which have been spent managing his multi award winning company, Stewart Landscape Construction Ltd says, “Through my time delivering many complex projects I have often felt that my clients would benefit from the services of an independent consultant who could provide a much needed project management role or indeed act as an intermediary between the clients and the landscaper. Often clients do not understand the complexities in delivering a landscape project on time and to budget and so having someone to help them through that process would be invaluable.” Richardson has been planning his new consultancy business and launched in August 2019. Commenting on the launch he says, “During the planning phase of this business I spoke to many industry movers and shakers who have expressed an interest in my services. Excitingly some of that interest has been from international clients so I have decided to offer my services to a global market.” Richardson has used a business development advisor to help him create his new consultancy practice. Neville Stein, who is an expert in business diversification believes that Richardson can offer something new to the landscape

industry and says, “Mark has a real passion is to help clients turn their ideas into a tangible reality, enabling them to achieve a landscape project that exceeds their expectations.” Stein, who has a real understand of the landscape market also says, “Often landscape clients need someone to ‘sense check’ their ideas to ensure that they are implementable and then to help them deliver the project to the right specification, within the financial budget and the required timescales and this is just what Mark is so good at doing.” Richardson will continue to operate his landscape company in the medium term, and in particular will continue to build award winning show gardens at RHS Chelsea.

Perennial helps families get ready for school PERENNIAL, the charity for people in horticulture across the UK, is ready to support families this September meet the rising costs of school. Parents and carers naturally want to give their children the best start at school to help them grow as individuals with opportunities to learn and thrive throughout their school life. But uniform, sports equipment, school trips, term-

time food, transport and other essential education equipment can put real financial pressure on families. Where there is a gap in short term provision or where families cannot access the help they need, Perennial can directly support them. Julia Hayne, Director of Services at Perennial says: “The cost of raising a family is rising but we’re not seeing wages

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



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increase at the same rate as essential outgoings. We know many families are frustrated that, despite being in work and budgeting carefully, they are still struggling to meet the growing demands on their finances. We’re here to alleviate some of the pressure, taking the stress out of going back to school and helping families find financial solutions that will help them in the longer term.” Perennial can help families where at least one parent or carer works or has recently worked in horticulture. The charity’s professional, friendly team can help people access support towards the costs of uniform and sports kit, books and other essential equipment, term time transport, educational school trips and term time meal provision. According to a report by The Children’s Society, the average cost of secondary school uniform, per year per child, is £340. Parents of primary school age children spend an average of £255 per year, per child. Many people simply can’t afford new uniform and for those forced to purchase uniform from specific suppliers, the costs can result in debt or the family going without other essentials. In addition to uniform, school trips are an expense that many families cannot afford. A typical day trip ranges in cost from £10 to £80 per pupil with additional transport costs

depending on the school and the trip. Residential trips can range from £200 to £350. While families in receipt of Pupil Premium or free school meals are sometimes eligible for subsidies or financial assistance from the school or local authority, this is not always the case. Julia continues: “We help families every day, often facing difficult challenges, providing a safety net for people who are not able to find support elsewhere. As your charity, we’re here to give you the help and support you need.” People find themselves in need of help for any number of reasons including redundancy, illness, injury, family bereavement or another life-changing event. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution as every person’s situation is different, but Perennial is here for everyone working in, or retired from any branch of horticulture and wants to hear from anyone who needs help accessing local support, choosing childcare options, understanding their statutory rights or applying for a little extra financial help during pinch points of the year such as children returning to school. If you, or someone you know, works in horticulture and needs a helping hand, contact Perennial in confidence on 0800 093 8543, email or request support online at

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Countdown to SALTEX 2019

Visitors praise the value of SALTEX

With the registration for Europe’s largest annual groundscare exhibition SALTEX 2019 now open, the preparations are now underway for the 300 or so exhibitors gathering at Birmingham’s NEC this October. The two-day event will offer visitors a unique opportunity to experience the very latest industry trends and innovations, enhance their education and learn from industry experts. Since it’s inaugural year in 1938, the show has continually evolved with the people of the industry in mind. Looking forward to this year’s show, SALTEX Event Sales Manager, Charles Neale, says: “We’re heading for yet another sell out event at SALTEX 2019 as our floorplan is already over 95% sold out. “This year has seen over 30 exhibitors increase their stand footprint which just goes to show how valuable SALTEX is to them. With over 90% of our exhibitors generating new business at SALTEX 2018, then it’s inevitable that our long-standing and new trade will be demanding even more space for SALTEX 2020. “Touching on new business, we now have over 40 exhibitors who will be making their debut exhibit with us at SALTEX this year with a large amount travelling from overseas. A few of the debut names include the likes of JCB, Red Rhino Crushers and Razorback UK and we are delighted to have companies of this calibre on-board.”


Joining the exhibitors on the show floor will be exciting features such as the new Eco Village, which will provide live demonstrations dedicated to environmentally-friendly products and Lawn Care Legends LIVE – a networking opportunity for landscapers and gardeners, among many other features. Also, not to be missed this year is the SALTEX college cup. This is a student-led sports turf challenge, testing teams of students on their turf management knowledge with paper-based questions, a presentation and live test samples. Sponsored by Toro and Reesink Turfcare, the competition presents a real challenge to its young contestants, but with the promise of big rewards. A oncein-a-lifetime prize with Real Madrid Football Club has been planned. The winning team of the 2019 competition will travel to Spain at the end of February 2020 for an invaluable groundscare work experience placement at the club’s Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in the run up to a major international game. • Registration is accessible through the SALTEX website and visitors can simply bring their email confirmation (on a phone or a printed copy to the registration desk), which will be located at the show entrance. • SALTEX 2019 takes place at the NEC, Birmingham on October 30 and 31. • For more information visit


GKB Set to Attend this Year’s Saltex Turf Management Show GKB will be showcasing a range of their trusted, robust machinery at this year’s show. GKB are delighted to confirm that they will be attending Saltex Turf Management Show 2019. This year’s show takes place at the NEC Birmingham from the 30th to 31st October 2019. With an impressive line-up of turf machinery on display, from brushing and cleaning artificial turf to tackling surface drainage, infill removal and sand spreading, Saltex 2019 is a show not to miss. Aspiring to develop machines that consistently meet the exact expectations and demands of the customer, GKB is proud to be showcasing a range of our durable and reliable turf maintenance machines at this year’s show. Tom Shinkins, Operations Manager, says: “It’s great to be at Saltex again. It’s a real opportunity to speak to Turf professionals and showcase our products for the 4th year in a row.” Tom adds: “The show has gone from strength to

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The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Time to take the university challenge? Education broadens the mind and it can also kickstart your business. Even so, how many landscape gardeners feel their study days are well and truly behind them? Rachel Gordon discovers how taking up a landscaping related degree as a mature student can further prospects

Learning at Eden Project

Perhaps school was somewhere you wanted to escape and your knowledge developed through work? A university degree may not have been on your radar when at school, but there is always time to put some wellearned letters after your name. More importantly, there is only so much you can teach yourself. Learning about soil science, landscaping with the latest materials and techniques and computer-aided design are just some of the topics that come to life when taught by professionals. Access all areas Achieving a degree level education is not easy, but you do not necessarily need A levels. Foundation degrees typically provide an alternative route, often lasting two years with the


conversion to a BA or BSc taking a further year. Some colleges will alternatively offer Higher National Certificates and Diploma courses prior to moving onto the degree course – these too are a year apiece. Other colleges focus on NVQ courses – once you achieve Level 3, this is the equivalent to A level and should you wish to continue studying it will be recognised by other colleges. So, what’s stopping you? Clearly the cost can be offputting, although loans are often available, but sometimes it is through a lack of confidence - some may also feel they have left it too late - the thought of studying alongside ‘kids’ fills them with dread. The reality though is very different. Landscape gardening students are often older and they will have a range of life

FEATURE experiences. This can add to the enjoyment of studying and in learning from people of all ages. Some will be school leavers while others will be already in landscaping or on wanting to change careers. A lack of qualifications is not a barrier Not having obtained the grades at school need not be a barrier to higher education. Some degrees are highly academic – an example might be landscape architecture, such as can be taken at the University of Sheffield. But, is your aim to work closely with planners and on major developments? This is probably not where most landscapers working on residential and smaller commercial projects want to specialise. Many garden design courses, particularly at lower levels, are easy to get onto if you have practical experience and can show commitment – and once you start, you are on the learning ladder. There is a lot of flexibility - colleges may offer supplementary English and maths tuition, others may offer entry based on relatively low attainment at GCSE, such as two D grades, and take into account relevant work experience. Depending on the college, there can be an accommodating approach, which can be helpful for those hoping to return to study or perhaps who have moved to the UK from overseas. Local or further afield? Clearly, a local college may prove the most convenient, particularly if you want to keep costs down or if there are family commitments. But, successfully completing the right course can be transformational in terms of the benefits it could bring – look both close and at wider options. If your nearest college wants to attract hobby gardeners rather than professionals, then it won’t be suitable. However, it could also make sense to try a short course, if there is one available on a topic of interest, to get a feel for a particular college. Some of the colleges to check out include Merrist Wood in Surrey, Myerscough in Cheshire, Writtle in Essex, Sparsholt in Hampshire and Plumpton in East Sussex and the following are just three options to whet your appetite… Eden Project Learning On the western tip of the UK is the futuristic Eden Project – but despite its unusual appearance, replete with bioomes, it is a horticultural centre of expertise, which is part of Cornwall College. Matt James, programme manager for garden and landscape design, says many there are many mature

Eden Project

applicants who gain places. He advises on coming to an open day - meeting with a tutor can help potential students decide what route is most suitable. He says for those wanting to achieve a degree, a typical route would be the one year Higher National Certificate in garden and landscape design, followed by a Higher National Diploma for a second year. A third year can then secure a full BSc (Hons) Horticulture (Garden & Landscape Design) degree. This is far from being all about written examinations, but is still demanding – much depends on the student’s portfolio of work built up over the course. “For mature students or those wanting a ‘second career’ we typically recommend the HND, which is the more intensive garden and landscape design option,” says Matt. “While all our design students, regardless of their particular programme, study core design topics together, it is students from this course that have gone on to win awards including the Society of Garden Designers Student Award in 2014 and 2016.” Matt adds: “Essentially the BSc option is a horticulture degree with a garden and landscape design specialism. Meanwhile, the HNC is an introductory year to the field, ideal for those who want to change career but also for those interested in garden and landscape design for more holistic reasons. “The HND is a course aimed specifically at those who want to enter the garden and landscape design industry as quickly as possible.” Tutors work on a part-time basis as they are all professionals, working in the landscaping sector, and students have come from as far afield as Hull and London to study, finding accommodation with the help of the student housing officer. Craven College College Based in Skipton, north Yorkshire, this college is set within the picturesque dales and offers a foundation degree that

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


FEATURE an advanced level in the capital. The college says its emphasis is on teaching practical teaching within working environments. Foundation degrees are delivered in partnership with the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester – although most of the coursework takes place in London. Sophie Guinness, lecturer in plants and planting design at London’s Capel Manor College, comments: “We teach all sorts of students and we want to make sure they have the skills they need to have successful careers.” But, she points

Richard Easton, garden design tutor, and a previous Gold award winner at the Harrogate Flower Show

can be converted to a BA Garden Design (Hons). Marketing manager Jennifer McDowell says that using technology is one of the most appealing options for students. “They develop high levels of professionalism in CAD using programmes such as VectorWorks, SketchUP Pro and Adobe Photoshop”, notes Jennifer adding that this is combined with a focus on creativity. Tutor Richard Easton, for example, is a Gold award winner at the Harrogate Flower Show, belongs to the Approved Society of Gardeners and also teaches on the fine art degree. Another tutor, who lectures on garden design and horticulture is Mary Swan, who writes about gardens and design and is a speaker on the topic around the UK. Former student Ness Green who studied on the degree course won the winning balcony garden prize recently at Landscape, the industry trade show, and says: “Craven College provided me with exceptional training and being run over three years, allowed me the opportunity to delve deeper into subject areas surrounding garden design.” Capel Manor Set over five campuses in greater London, it may surprise some students that horticulture can be studied to


out that having the skills and talent needs to be backed up by some business nous if they want to run their own firm. “Garden design firms often aren’t large employers, so if you have some entrepreneurial ability then this can be a good move. Certainly, in London, I would say there is work around – there are plenty of cash rich, time poor people that want someone to design gardens and then help look after it. People need trained gardeners – if a recession strikes, then maintenance work may take over from the design – you need to be flexible.” She adds that students come from many different backgrounds. “There are plenty of career changers, who can be people in stressful jobs but who are serious about doing something they enjoy and students support each other as they progress.” A return to education can bring many benefits, so if you’re feeling your business has hit a wall and it’s time for some fresh inspiration, then study and practical training could move it up a gear – the world of learning is within your reach…

Mary Swan, garden design tutor shown with ‘Turning Point’, her first garden in an RHS Show, won a Gold Medal at the RHS Chatsworth Flower Show 2018.

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How to interview potential candidates A lot of emphasis is placed on how candidates can impress at interview, but it is all too common to ignore what employers can be doing to make the interview process more successful, says Mark Bolam, Landscape Recruitment Consultant at Horticruitment UK Ltd Here are some tips on how to conduct a sucessful interview: Time This is crucial. Preparation is key before starting the hunt for a new employee. Set aside time to read CV’s and arrange interviews either directly with candidates or through agencies or recruitment companies. Delays after receiving CV’s give the impression that an employer is not really interested. On reciept of a potential good CV, act quickly – the candidate may be applying for other positions as well. If an interview date can not be set immediatley at least let the candidate know their CV is of interest. For the interview itself try and allocate a reasonable amount of time to avoid rushing things. Also, bear in mind a lot candidates may be currently employed elsewhere, so interviews during the working day may be problematical. Can provision be made to interview either before or after the working day, or perhaps on a Saturday morning?

Pre-interview It can speed the interview process up if the potential candidate is made aware in advance of anything that they need to bring along to the interview, such as a passport, driving licence or copies of qualifications and certificates. The interview A tea or coffee is always appreciated, as is the offer of toilet facilities, especially if the candidate has travelled any distance. An interview will flow better if there is an initial period of informality. The main purpose of the interview is to find a candidate who is a good fit for the role, so questions should cover all the relevant points that will be specific to the role. It is a two-


way street though, so try and be honest about what the role will entail in terms of responsibilities, duties, size of teams and what equipment they may be required to use. Working in the landscaping industry is not a 9-5 job, but it is worth pointing out to a candidate at interview stage the sort of hours they may be expected to work. In addition they would appreciate being made aware of any seasonal variations the role may entail and if they may be required to work some distance from home from time to time. It also pays to ask candidates about their commute, route to work, mode of transport as this may be vital for a successful long-term commitment to the company. Also ask about the candidate’s future aspirations and ambitions. Mentioning potential training courses in the future will generally enthuse candidates and can be a real positive and will also benefit the company. Give candidates plenty of opportunity to ask questions themselves. Don’t be afraid to discuss salary expectations, although there is no need to commit immediately. Conclude the interview with accurate information about what the next stage is likely to be. Post-Interview Keeping the candidate abreast of the interview outcome is critical, even if it is negative. If they aren’t suitable for the position, constructive criticism as to why is often welcome. By all means consider things for a day or two, but let them know if they’re still in the running or not (especially important when you may have multiple candidates to consider over several days or even weeks). Feedback is even more vital for agencies and recruitment companies so they can see if they are hitting the right mark with the type of candidates they are proposing. Finally, if unsure whether to interview a candidate on the strength of a CV, consider a brief informal telephone interview first, to find out a little bit more about the candidate before inviting them for a formal interview. Some candidates may be great in their landscaping role but may new have yet mastered the art of writing CVs. For further advice visit


Protect Your Assets with Passport365 Passport365, an app that revolutionises the process of repairing, maintaining and managing multi-sports assets, is already proving beneficial to early adopters. Passport365 is a mobile app created by the Managing Director of Replay Maintenance, Garry Martin. The innovative software, which can be customised with individual client branding, will enable grounds maintenance teams across the world to book in jobs, record their daily activity and upload images from the sites they manage – all of which can be viewed by asset managers in head offices across the globe in real time. Not only does the app provide ease and efficiency in the documentation of maintenance works, it has also been proven to support clients when the unexpected happens.

Garry explained: “A Replay customer has recently been in a situation where a player sustained an injury on the pitch and was subsequently trying to take legal action against the facility. “On the morning the alleged incident took place, we had carried out a service on the pitch and put our findings in a Passport365 report. It was thanks to the information within this, that the facility team were able to provide evidence that the pitch, and more specifically the area the incident happened, was safe.” The launch of Passport365 will deliver an aspect of protection as well as ease and convenience to every aspect of facilities management.

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Nurturing the talent of the future A ‘school trip’ to Johnsons of Whixley made such an impression on a young Tom Watkins, that when he was offered the chance of joining the company, he jumped at it. Tom was offered a place on the company’s Growing Stars management trainee scheme, designed to cultivate young talent, two years ago, after finishing a degree in horticulture at Askham Bryan College in York. Despite an initial interest in landscaping, following a stint in the grounds of a hotel and spa during his degree, Tom realised production was where his true interests lay. This led him to Virginia, USA, for a nine-month post-graduate internship with a company that produced bedding plants. On completing the placement, Tom enquired about roles at Johnsons and was delighted to be accepted onto the Growing Stars programme. Running across four years, the programme aims to nurture the next generation of supervisors and managers. The programme includes on the job training, with technical and education modules; training experiences leading to a formal qualification in team leadership; horticultural skills; and operational modules on environmental issues, health and safety and IT. Trainees supported by mentor All trainees are supported by an external mentor and are continually assessed. Ultimately, the goal is to produce dedicated, motivated individuals with a full understanding of all aspects of the business. Tom said when he was offered the management traineeship, he couldn’t believe his luck: “I wanted to find a job in the York area so I was thrilled to be offered such a great opportunity. I’d visited Johnsons while studying, on a sort of ‘school trip’, and it really stuck with me once I’d finished my degree and internship in the US. “The training programme ensures you get to know each department within the company, in order to gain an understanding of how the company works as a whole, so over the past two years I’ve spent time in production, incoming goods, retail operation and sales. “It’s a big company with various departments so


Tom Watkins

it’s important to understand how the whole business works. Each department is symbiotic, so it has been invaluable for me to both work in and learn the dynamics of each department. With an interest in growing, it could be easy to dismiss the procurement, sales, order processing and despatch processes that are in fact vital to the bigger picture.” Tom also spent time working on placement with one of Johnsons’ young plant and bare root suppliers in the Netherlands, Batouwe Nurseries, where he gleaned valuable insights. “I had always been aware of the strong stance that the

RECRUITMENT & TRAINING Dutch hold in the production industry, and so I was excited to spend some time working alongside them,” says Tom. “The experience way exceeded my expectations. I came back to the UK with new-found knowledge of how a young plant production facility is run, having learned a lot from a company that is taking great steps in biological IPM strategy. We pride ourselves on producing a good quality end product, which must start from strong young plant material, so it was great to see what goes into producing a young plant that meets our standards for growing on.” Growing Stars initiative develops skillsets Tom aims to build on his experience to become an expert in growing, despite horticulture experiencing ongoing changes. “The industry is going through political,

environmental and attitudinal changes, which could be seen as daunting and challenging,” explains Tom, “but I see it as a time to revaluate current practice and to innovate.” Johnsons Managing Director Graham Richardson said the business aimed to develop staff from their initial induction through to regular training and development. “Our Growing Stars initiative develops the skillset of our existing staff members across the business, with a view to them one day taking on more senior roles. We also offer apprenticeship opportunities – such schemes have helped create our managers of today and we hope that new apprenticeships will provide our managers of the future. “It’s been wonderful to see Tom grow in his role since he joined us and I’m looking forward to seeing him go on to even greater things with Johnsons.”

Johnsons of Whixley

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


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Why there is a need to adopt herbicide-free alternatives and how they can benefit your organisation in the current landscape 2019 has seen a heightened increase in public awareness and press surrounding the use of herbicides, specifically glyphosate, for controlling unwanted vegetation in public spaces, especially around people, animals and waterways. Whether as a result of public petition or a simple organisational desire to remove or reduce herbicide-use, increasingly UK councils, contractors and green space companies are looking at the alternatives space and what is available to help them achieve this. Organisations that adopted herbicide-free methods in their infancy, initially to reduce their herbicide use, found that they gained additional value from the solutions, bringing wider benefits to their organisation as a whole. These benefits are outlined below: First-mover advantage. By adopting herbicide-free solutions, organisations have been able to gain the competitive edge in their sector. Understanding herbicidefree solutions, as a result of implementation, means companies can position themselves as thought leaders in the space, offering guidance and advice to other organisations looking to navigate the herbicide-free landscape and adopt similar practices. These solutions then become embedded as part the broader, and integrated weed control programme. Broadening of product offerings. Using alternative methods for weed control automatically increases an organisation’s product offering, allowing them to reach previously unobtainable customers and therefore new markets. A good example would be a council tender to maintain public spaces specifying the use of a herbicide-free solution, but also requesting the use of herbicides for highway maintenance.

Additional revenue streams. Some herbicide-free solutions to weed control, notably thermal solutions such as Foamstream or hot water, go beyond being solely a solution for weed control and can also be used for a multitude of other functions such as street cleaning, gum removal and sanitisation. Providing organisations with additional services to offer their clients creates new revenue streams. Companies who have adopted certain herbicide-free methods have also found there to be additional demand from individuals and organisations who cannot afford to implement their own systems, therefore turning to these companies for their services. With a myriad of options in the herbicide-free space to choose from, realising the additional benefits that can be gained is an important factor when considering which is the right herbicide-free solution to adopt in your organisation. Foamstream, manufactured by Weedingtech, is the leading herbicide-free weed control solution across the world and will be exhibiting at SALTEX (30th-31st October) on Stand F027. For more information on Foamstream and the alternatives available visit or get in touch at or by calling +44 203 909 0050.

idverde using Foamstream All images credit: – Foamstream by Weedingtech

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


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Ethical Conscience Introducing Greg Bedson, a landscape designer who will be writing a regular column for The Landscaper Magazine. This month he ponders on how to balance a client’s wishes with his own ethical conscience I chose to enter this industry as even from a young age, I have always had an appreciation for the beauty in a well cared for garden. As gardeners, we prune, mow, trim and edge to give our customers a space they can enjoy all year round. This desire for a beautifully kept outdoor space however, does sometimes offer us ethical dilemmas. Earlier this month I was dismayed when a regular garden maintenance client suggested that we cut down their wildflower meadow and restore it to a neatly clipped lawn, simply because it ‘doesn’t look very tidy.’ Since the 1930s, over 97 percent of Britain’s wildflower meadows have been lost, resulting in species-rich grassland now covering just one percent of the UK’s land area. This is a big problem, as over 1,370 species of insects including pollinating bees, butterflies, hoverfies, soil pulsating ants, worms, fungi and beetles all eat our most common meadow plants. In fact, meadows are so species rich that they can contain up to 40 species per square metre. Meadows or ‘No-mow zones’ are great additions to almost any garden and I actively encourage clients to consider the benefits. Obviously, not every garden has the space to house a full meadow, however even just a small section left to its own devices can be of real benefit to the surrounding wildlife, as well as adding additional interest and colour. There is also the added convenience that, once established they are relatively easy to maintain - meaning more time can be spent in other areas of the garden. In the case of my client, the area is still very much in the development stage, so admittedly it isn’t yet the abundance of colour she had perhaps envisaged. From a practical point of view however, the area was previously disused, located at the end of the garden and on a a steep incline making

regular mowing difficult and time consuming. It was in many ways a perfect spot for such a meadow. For a business offering a service, cases such as this put us in rather a predicament. In a similar situation, I was asked by another client to completely empty and clear out their pond of all plants in late spring and leave just a fountain in place. At this time, it was home to abundance of thriving wildlife including tadpoles, newts and pond-skaters. Again this seemingly simple request comes with ethical responsibilities to the living environment. In both cases I decided that the best way to approach the situation was to discuss the effects with the client. I pride myself on building excellent customer relations and simply refusing to carry out the tasks could result in our clients finding someone else to carry to the job. As a company that is trying to grow with sustainability at its forefront, destroying habitats that are so species rich, without a moments thought felt like I was throwing my principles out of the window. Luckily for me the clients were grateful for the advice I could give them and for pointing out the values in keeping these habitats. The pond was left until to the following winter before its overhaul - as for the meadow, we agreed to leave it growing for the rest of the season and cut it down in the autumn as previously planned. Who knows - she might yet be convinced to to keep it for another year.

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


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Plantscape helps Southside BID achieve Birmingham’s world class vision Birmingham’s vision to become a world class city centre is being given a helping hand by civic floral display experts Plantscape. The city’s Southside BID (Business Improvement District), whose attractions include the National Trust’s Back to Backs, the art deco Electric Cinema and the fabulously transformed New Street station, initially appointed the company to supply it with winter and spring flowering planters to add colour and vibrancy to the area. They proved so popular that they decided to order a range of summer planters, baskets and window boxes, which are catching the eyes and imagination of residents and visitors. Julia Robinson, manager at Southside BID, said: “Our district has established itself as the entertainment hub of Birmingham, and it’s important that Southside is presented in the best possible way to all visitors. “The blooms that have been provided by Plantscape help bring the area to life, and the feedback we’ve had in person and on social media has been excellent. They are low maintenance and beautiful, and exactly what we were looking for.” The city as a whole has seen great investment and improvement over recent years. Its iconic library is an architectural wonder and its funky space age looking Bullring shopping centre is world famous. And it will play

host to the Commonwealth Games in 2022 - another tick in the ‘putting Birmingham on the map’ box. Plantscape, which supplies hundreds of local councils, BID teams and In Bloom groups across England, Scotland and Wales with all year-round plants as well as solar powered Christmas trees, has also provided floral enhancements to other Birmingham and West Midlands BIDs. Plantscape is famed for its innovative seven-day selfwatering planters - which came into their own during last year’s summer heatwave. Its winter offerings, while in need of less watering, offer a hassle free option for towns - as Plantscape grows, plants, installs, maintains and then removes the displays.

Eye-catching floral display by John Chambers Green-tech has supplied John Chambers Wildflower Seed to a community project in Burncross, near Sheffield. The local community has set up a group named the Burncross ActionTeam - dedicated volunteers who work tirelessly to improve their local area and community. In 2017, as part of a Greening Great Britain initiative with the Royal Horticultural Society, the Burncross Action Team

approached the John Chambers Wildflower team to help them transform a forgotten ‘grey spot’ in Sheffield into a mini haven for wildlife. The area had previously been used as storage for various materials and as a result it had a high salt content. The team took this into consideration and supplied enough John Chambers Pro Cornfield Annuals and Pro Coastal 100% Wildflower mixes to cover an area of 500m². The Pro-range includes mixes that include more commonly found species to suit a wide variety of growing conditions. These mixes provide a beautiful wildflower habitat, encouraging biodiversity in urban landscapes. The wildflower annuals established quickly and looked great the first summer. Wildflower Perennial’s take a year to establish so first flowered in 2018. The wildflower display was such that the team was proud to win the Britain In Bloom 2018  ‘Platinum award’ for their Burncross Gateway Garden.

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Resin Bound driveways rise in popularity The customer demand for Resin Bound driveways, paths and patios is continuing to increase with architects, landscapers and surfacing contractors responding to this tremendous sales opportunity by adding it to their list of services. A stunning alternative to block paving, macadam concrete or loose gravel, resin bound is hard wearing, has a natural finish and low maintenance. Permeability is also a major plus point. SUDS compliant, it meets planning requirements – making it ideal for new builds and renovations for either residential or commercial projects. DALTEX UVR system is BBA accredited Derbyshire Specialist Aggregates is the manufacturer of DALTEX dried aggregates, the UK’s No 1 brand for resin bound. DALTEX dried aggregates are meticulously dried and screened to produce a high quality product which, combined with DALTEX UVR resin, deliver a beautifully consistent finish. The DALTEX UVR resin bound System has been awarded certification by the BBA (the British Board of Agrément) and

the incredible choice of aggregate colours, sizes and shapes includes 40 stunning Daltex Bespoke colour blends. As the manufacturer of Daltex, the company offers 100% stock availability - with finished product ready for next day delivery – nationwide. For newcomers, a practical, hands on one day resin bound training course is run by experienced contractors from purpose built facilities in Derbyshire. This includes all the information and techniques required to create high quality resin bound installations. •

Revolutionary product made from plastic waste resembles timber Environmental services specialist Maydencroft Ltd, with offices in Hitchin and Windsor, is attracting national attention with an experimental boardwalk installed on a nature reserve and fishing lake near Rickmansworth in Hertfordshire. The boardwalk, marginally more expensive than timber, but with indefinite longevity, is made entirely of recycled plastics and has been developed by recycling industry pioneers in Germany. Known as Hanit® the materialis processed from secondary plastics known as polyolefins and dyed brown to resemble timber - then injected into moulds. It is being hailed as a revolutionary 21st century product because it has a vast range of applications from fencing to benches, building materials to bridges, even traffic bollards - and it may provide a definitive solution for the constructive disposal of polluting plastic waste.


Hanit®, brown in appearance, closely resembles timber with its own grain patterns but is much tougher and more durable than timber, although marginally more expensive. Now it’s hoped hanit® may provide a solution for the constructive disposal of unwanted and polluting plastic products. German Ulrich Kossin entered the recycling industry establishing HAHN Kunststoffe GmbH near Frankfurt in 1993. HAHN was a pioneer in recycling packaging plastics collected from households. Sam Eagling Fernandez, Regional Manager of Maydencroft Environmental Services says: “We have been using Hahn Plastics for many years now and have formed a great working relationship with the whole team there. Joining forces on various projects has enabled us to offer alternative, sustainable solutions to our clients. We're very happy with the end result and we currently have similar projects in the pipeline with the Environment Agency and various local authorities".

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New Stage V Excavator from Doosan Doosan has launched the company’s first Stage V medium size crawler excavator – the new DX300LC-7 30 tonne model. This new ‘-7’ model offers an unmatched combination of high performance, operating features, fuel efficiency, reliability and durability in this excavator class. The new DX300LC-7 Stage V excavator builds on the very successful design of the previous Stage IV machine. It introduces major enhancements in operator comfort, machine controllability, productivity, uptime and return on investment, with a strong focus on low fuel consumption, increased power, robustness and versatility. Increased comfort and controllability Already excelling in spaciousness and ergonomics, the new cab in the DX300LC-7 model takes operator comfort and ease of operation to unheralded levels. As well as a new high quality seat, the enhanced cab offers more features as standard than other machines on the market, ensuring super controllability and high precision in all applications. Key new features in the cab • New 8-inch touch-enabled colour LCD gauge panel, providing more information via a 30% larger screen • Stereo system integrated in the gauge panel • Smart keyless start system (option) • Improved interior cab design • Ultrasonic sonic detection of obstacles (option) • LED lights (option) • Side protection (option) • Air compressor (option) As standard, 360° cameras provide full visibility around the excavator and allow the operator to see a top-down view of the area outside the machine. The camera array comprises a front camera, two side cameras and a rear camera. The camera display is separated from the gauge panel. To meet Stage V engine emission regulations, the new DX300LC-7 excavator is powered by the latest generation Doosan DL08 diesel engine, providing 202 kW of power at 1800 RPM. The DL08 engine offers a new solution to exceed Stage V regulations without exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), that boosts the quantity of air available during combustion, increasing the temperature of the process and greatly reducing the amount of particulates produced. This is combined with super-efficient DOC/DPF+SCR aftertreatment technology to ensure minimal emissions.


Thanks to the new technology, maintenance of the diesel particulate filter (DPF) has been greatly reduced, with no maintenance required until the machine has operated for 8000 hours. With the DX300LC-7, Doosan has tried to ensure that productivity and environment protection are truly compatible. The enhanced fuel efficiency of the DL08 engine in combination with a new hydraulic main valve and the new generation SPC3 Smart Power Controls, provides increased fuel saving - +7% in the S mode and +6% in the P+ mode compared to the previous generation machine. These are two in a range of four power modes now available on the DX300LC-7, which help to simplify the operation of the new excavator compared to the more complex choice of eight power modes and SPC combinations in the previous generation machine. The operator is able to set the power mode (P+, P, S or E) in both one-way and two-way working modes. The new DX300LC-7 model is factory-installed with Doosan’s state-of-the-art DoosanConnect wireless fleet monitoring system. The DoosanConnect system offers a web-based fleet management solution, which is very useful for monitoring the performance and security of machines and promoting preventative maintenance. It is available as a standard feature on all new Doosan excavators (from 14 tonne), all new Doosan wheel loaders and Doosan ADTs.

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TIMBERSPORTS® British champion wins fifth consecutive STIHL title Elgan Pugh from Wales has been crowned the best lumberjack athlete in the country for the fifth consecutive time at the 2019 STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® British Championship, after breaking his own national record in the final discipline, the Hot Saw. Elgan Pugh on the Hot Saw challenge

Hosted in the picturesque surroundings of Blenheim Palace, as part of BBC Countryfile Live, the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® British Championship saw the top 12 lumberjack athletes from all over Great Britain compete in a head-to-head race against time across six disciplines. Using an axe, crosscut saw and chainsaw, competitors are awarded

maximum points for the fastest time in each discipline; Stock Saw, Underhand Chop, Single Buck, Standing Block Chop, Springboard and Hot Saw. In a competition that saw competitors push themselves to the limit, 16 personal best times were set which kept a packed crowd on the edge of their seats. Whilst Elgan claimed the top spot, an ecstatic Johnny Lewis came in a close second reaching the podium for the first time with Glen Penlington taking third place. Spike Milton, STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® Global Sports Director, says: “The British TIMBERSPORTS® Championship pushes athletes to a new level of performance and this year was no different with the competitors showcasing the skill and technique required to compete on the biggest British stage. We now look forward to the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® World Championship in Prague, where we have the difficult decision of choosing Team GB representatives from this great pool of talent.” Elgan said of his victory: “To be crowned the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® British Champion is a fantastic feeling and one I am very proud of." To find out more about the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS® visit

GreenMech SAFE-Trak chipper a game changer GreenMech’s new pivoting track extension system has proven itself to be a real game changer for Scotland’s tree surgeons South West Arb. With an increasing number of rail-side de-veg projects demanding work on steep embankments, the SURE-Trak’s ability to perform in even the most challenging of environments saw owner Stewart Ball taking delivery of the first SURE-Trak 19-28 woodchipper in the UK earlier this year. “When I established South West Arb five years ago, the first thing I purchased was a GreenMech SAFE-Trak chipper,” explains Stewart, who now heads-up a team of 15. “My previous employer had been a longstanding user of the SAFE-Trak units and, having looked at other machines, when it came to working on embankments or challenging terrain, no other chippers came close.” After quickly adding a second SAFE-Trak to his fleet, Stewart then heard about the launch of GreenMech’s next generation track system, SURE-Trak. Allowing safe traversing of slopes in excess of 35 degrees, the pivoting SURE-Trak assemblies allow each track to maintain contact with the ground independently, while


following differing contours, to provide a surer footprint and improved stability. “When I saw what the 19-28 fitted with SURE-Trak system could do, it was a complete game changer. It can get absolutely anywhere and the ability to tilt the body means it’s now even easier and safer for the operator to feed in material, no matter the embankment angle,” says Stewart. To help in the delivery of power line and railway contracts, Stewart was delighted to take delivery of his SURE-Trak 19-28 from local dealer Lloyd Ltd, in January 2019.

Sustainable soils, growing media and turf for the landscaping environment Green-tree Topsoil Light in texture with good water holding capacity. Ideal for environmentally conscious landscaping and construction projects.

Green-tree Amenity Tree Soil Load bearing, fertile planting medium. Enables tree root infrastructure to develop under hard urban landscapes, such as pavements.

Green-tree Roof Garden Substrate Intensive and Extensive available for rooftop or containerised planting projects. Lightweight with good or controlled water-holding capacity for healthy plant establishment.

ArborRaft Soil Works as a rootzone with the ArborRaft tree planting system in urban environments to protect the soil structure and ultimately protect and enhance the tree’s root growth.

Green-tree Bespoke Mixes Includes rootzones, low fertility soils, subsoil, sports soils and structural soils.

Turfs A range available depending upon the landscaping project. Includes Green-tree Wildflower Turf to provide an instant wildflower meadow.

Green-tree is a trading style of Green-tech Ltd

For a copy of the Green-tree soils brochure call 01423 332 100 or email


Hillier Trees part of major project to regenerate Elephant and Castle Over a period of around 10 years, Hillier will have supplied 1,100 semi-mature trees to support this remarkable initiative. The Elephant Park development project is the brainchild of multinational construction, property and infrastructure company Lendlease. It is a £2.3 billion regeneration programme on 28 acres of land in the centre of Elephant and Castle. Through it, Lendlease intend to make this vibrant area of London one of the most exciting places in the capital to live, work and visit. It has been designed by landscape architect and urban design firm Gillespies and, in late 2012, Hillier were invited to tender for the supply of all trees. “The brief was extraordinary in its scale and ambition,” comments Caroline Swann, Account Manager at Hillier Trees. “At the heart of the project is the Elephant Park development by Lendlease. As part of the contract awarded to them by Southwark Council, they also committed to greening up the entire Borough. Urban development projects occasionally require a number of ‘off site’ trees within the proximity of the main development, but this project goes further and will transform the whole area.”

Hillier Trees is proud to be part of the major, ongoing, multi-phase ‘Elephant Park’ project that aims to green up the London Borough of Southwark, including a regeneration focus around the Elephant and Castle

Hillier was awarded the contract for the supply of 1,100 semi-mature trees, to be delivered as required over a period of approximately 10 years. “Lendlease have very strong environmental credentials and biosecurity was an important consideration for them,” says Caroline. Larger trees, at 20-25cm and 40-45cm girth were specified for the project. This was, in part, because Lendlease had committed to attaining a certain Capital Asset Value for


Amenity Trees (CAVAT) to Southward Borough Council – through which, amenity trees are given a value as public assets. This is the first time a CAVAT commitment has been made on this scale.

New trees at the Salisbury Estate

Other vital elements of the contract award and delivery of the project were traceability and year-round delivery and planting. “The trees for this project have been selected rootball from our field tree nursery and then sent to our Broadmead container tree nursery in Hampshire,” says Caroline. “Lendlease and Gillespies have individually tagged and numbered every single tree. These trees have been called off for delivery by landscape contractor Gavin Jones by number as required, requiring expertise and due diligence from our Broadmead team.” As a result of this detailed tagging and delivery schedule, Lendlease has been able to create a dedicated trees map for this project ( It shows the exact planting location and species of every single one of the 1,100 trees. Hillier is pleased to report a high success rate with planting of the project to date. Planting is due to continue until approximately 2022, when all 1,100 trees will be able to be enjoyed by residents and visitors to Southwark. Key Trees Specified tree varieties for the Elephant Park project included a number of flowering trees.. Several pocket orchards have also been created throughout the streets; urban parks, several of which have integrated play areas for children. In these areas, mature apple trees have been specified to allow the community to enjoy the trees


Trees planted around the Heygate Estate

throughout the seasons, from admiring the blossom to picking the apples. Liquidambar styraciflua A large, hardy tree with spectacular autumn colour. Popular for avenue and street planting, but also makes a fantastic specimen tree. Prunus avium ‘Plena’ A medium wild cherry variety, one of the loveliest of all flowering trees. Its branches are wreathed with drooping, double pure-white flowers in late April to early May.

New trees planted along Rodney Road

Spring blossom opens to a profusion of single white flowers that remain longer than many other cherry blossoms. It has spectacular autumn colour — as its name suggests, all the fiery shades of sunset. Pinus sylvestris The only native pine to Britain. It has a distinctive twotoned trunk as it matures, with needles in greens and blues. Establishes in even the most difficult and extreme conditions.

Prunus ‘Snow Goose’ An upright, columnar cherry variety with single, brilliantwhite flower blossoms in April and leaves in warm shades of marmalade in autumn. A great tree for providing seasonal interest in tight locations. Prunus ‘Sunset Boulevard’ A tough, upright, cherry tree that suits most soil types.

A community planting day at the Newington and Draper Estates

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


Large or small, doesn’t matter. A compact that gets more jobs done. The T393 compact with manual or hydrostatic transmission and high capacity hydraulics gives you the ultimate workhorse, making easy work of most landscaping and parks maintenance tasks. And, with its vast range of attachments, you get a tractor that can do even more. Reesink Turfcare UK Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Images shown for illustration only.

TR396 The Landscaper Sept 108x150.indd 1

THE BEFORE AND AFTER OF ONE METRE DEEP AERATION COMPACTION AND WATERLOGGING STOP PLAY. DOWNTIME COSTS MONEY. Terrain Aeration’s long-term treatment reaches one metre deep where compressed air blasts the compaction. The soil is opened up for good drainage and a healthy sward with minimum disruption. We have been successfully aerating sports turf, bowling greens, golf courses, parks, trees and gardens for over twenty-five years.

See us at work: Call us for a quotation 01449 673 783

13/08/2019 09:16


Tipmaster builds bespoke vehicles for industry Tipmaster supply a complete range of new commercial vehicles with tippers and bodywork for the arboricultural, landscaping and forestry industry, fitted to the chassis of choice with the body work built to client specification. Tipmaster Ltd, a bespoke commercial vehicle body builder and tipping body manufacturer, is able to design and build to exact specifications, offering a one stop service including arranging finance. Tipmaster builds for many industries including councils, waste management and tool and plant hire companies.

Before any build takes place the company undertakes a full drawing and weight calculation for a client to approve. Top quality materials are used that last the test of time. In addition, Tipmaster has a full paint shop and sign writing facility along with a fully stocked spare parts department with an on-line spares purchasing facility. Also offered are many optional extras including tow bars, LED beacons, work lamps, Tool boxes and winches, vehicle tracking systems & dead locks. Visit or call 020 8539 0611 for further details.

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020 8539 0611 | The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019


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New GKB Vstrong for Reading Football Club Championship league football club, Reading Football Club (FC), have been using a GKB VS160 Vstrong for the maintenance of their impressive pitches for over a year and have now added another durable and trusted scarifying GKB machine to their range. Adam Grantham, Grounds Manager at Reading FC, explains how after trialling many other machines, the Vstrong completely stood out. “It’s performance has met our expectations” which was a key factor in choosing the robust and reliable scarifying machine,” he says. “GKB is well known, for their excellent range of machines, for all day to day use in our industry. The service we have received from Tom Shinkins, Operations Manager at GKB, has been second to none. Being able to visit them at shows such as SALTEX where you can see them in a room and speak to GKB representatives really helps in making a decision,” adds Adam.

As the GKB Vstrong showcases the technology, operating speed and the reliability of GKB machines demanded by professionals. Adam states that Reading FC have been using their machine for “deep sward clean out or a light verti cut.” The beating heart of the machine is the CombiRotor with generically developed 3mm carbide scarifying blades, allowing easy attainable operating depths of 5cm.

Premier finish for Chesterfield FC Equipped with the TurfClean™ cassette and a duo of INFINICUT® mowers, Head Groundsman at Chesterfield Football Club Liam Reynolds is delivering a premier finish at the clubs’ Proact Stadium. Such is the standard of surface preparation and aesthetic quality that Liam was recently awarded runner-up in the National League Groundsman of the Year Awards for 2019. Together with his colleagues at Premier Pitches, Liam took over the maintenance at Chesterfield FC in 2016. In addition to the wealth of experience within the team, Liam also brought with him a fleet of machinery including two INFINICUT® mowers from MTD Specialty Turf Products. “We have two 34” mowers, one Floating Head and one Fixed Head. These are used in conjunction with one another, with the INFINICUT® FL being our mower of choice for match day preparation. They deliver such exceptional cut quality, which doesn’t go unnoticed by the spectators, players Liam Reynolds at Chesterfield FC

and managers alike who all comment on the stripe definition and overall appearance.” The most recent addition to Liam’s armoury is the TurfClean™ hygiene cassette, which he uses in the INFINICUT® FL for post-match clean-up. Fitted with an angled comb beneath a rotary brush, the TurfClean™ effectively collects divots, debris and organic matter while standing the grass plant up to help ensure a healthy sward. “With the two adjustable rollers on the FL, we can adjust both the height and the angle of the TurfClean™ cassette to clean deep down into the turf canopy or raise it up to just remove debris off the top,” explains Liam. “It’s brilliant even in the wet. Once debris is collected in the comb, the rotating brush then gives no option but to throw the collected material into the box, leaving nothing behind.” In use after every match and training session, the TurfClean™ also comes into its own through the winter, when the plant is at its most vulnerable, as highlighted by Liam. “When growth is slow, we will use the TurfClean™ during prep instead of cutting and it puts down a fantastic stripe without risking any unnecessary stress to the plant. The sharpness of cut delivered by the INFINI’s, together with the hygiene we’re achieving with the TurfClean™, has dramatically improved the health and condition of our surface.”

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



Ecoline+ hits the mark at Watford FC Watford FC training ground, home to five full-size and two goalkeeping/warmup natural grass training pitches as well as a full-size artificial turf training pitch and fourteen college/ academy natural grass pitches. In the stadium only premium quality is acceptable and so Ecoline+ offered the ideal all-round solution. Ecoline+ is one of the most advanced, low volume, ready-to-use line marking paints available, especially when used in Pitchmark Hybrid marker at Watford FC

Pitchmark’s Ecoline+ has become the line marking paint of choice for FA Premier League club Watford FC. The demand for using a premium paint at the Vicarage Road stadium led to trials last season, since when Pitchmark have been further developing Ecoline+. Watford FC became the first to use the improved formula at the opening game of the season against Brighton and Hove Albion in August this year. In 2018 Scott Tingley, Head Groundsman at Watford FC, set out on what was originally a cost exercise to see if they could establish the use of one paint for all marking. “We were using top end paint for the stadium and bottom end for the other pitches,” he explains. “We wanted to make it one paint but of course the cost had to be taken into account. We looked at Pitchmark and what we found different was their specialisation solely in line marking products.” The club had been using Pitchmark’s Direct at the

combination with Pitchmark’s Eco and Hybrid markers and special nozzles. “We use a Pitchmark Hybrid marker which gives us the quality of a spray marker, without compromising the precision and quality of a transfer marker,” explains Scott. “Fixture dependent, we can mark up to three times a week and with the traditional wheel to wheel and four-wheel spray markers you lose ground cover and it’s too easy to transfer paint.” The Pitchmark Hybrid overcomes these problems with a three-wheeled spray design, which is easily manoeuvred over wet lines. The cone nozzles give perfect deep leaf coverage, so you only need one pass. “It’s easy to use, it feels like a normal wheel marker and you get premium quality,” Scott adds. “It’s quite complex though and needs looking after but if we have any issues Olly Boys, the Turfix rep, gives us second to none service and back-up.” (Turfix is Pitchmark’s recently formed sole UK distribution arm).

Synthetic surfaces kept in mint condition A range of Syn-Pro equipment by SISIS is helping Cameron Flitten, Head Groundsman for De Montfort University at Beaumont Park, keep the synthetic surfaces in impeccable condition. With the emergence of synthetic surfaces becoming more common across a wide range of sports, the SISIS brand continues to go from strength to strength with its impressive Syn-Pro portfolio. Originally from New Zealand, Cameron’s career in sports turf started with an apprenticeship on a golf course before landing a role working on the cricket squares at Loughborough University and then progressing to being in charge of the rugby and football pitches. Three years ago, he became the head groundsman for De Montfort University, which coincided with the university agreeing to lease the vast playing fields at Beaumont


Park. The site received a multi-million pound investment and transformed the facilities into some of the best in the county. Along with seven other members of staff, Cameron maintains the wide array of sports surfaces at Beaumont Park which now includes two recently built all-weather 3G synthetic pitches. To maintain these two pitches, Cameron chooses to use the Litamina 1200 and a combination of the Flexicomb fitted with straight and zigzag brushes. The Litamina 1200 is a compact sweeper for efficient collection for unwanted debris from sand filled or rubber crumb synthetic surfaces. With its spiral design brush helping to stand up the pile and improve collection, and a large capacity mesh hopper collecting debris but allowing infill to be returned to the surface, the Litamina 1200 is ideal for helping to keep surfaces free of contamination and harmful debris.

TURF & GROUNDSCARE Designed primarily for use on synthetic surfaces, the Flexicomb ensures even distribution of infill materials and lifts the pile. The adjustable setting ensures the effect of a rake, but with the softness of a brush, reducing the risk of damage to the fibres. The bristle sections are replaceable and the Flexicomb is designed for a long working life with minimal maintenance. For greater results, Cameron attaches either the zigzag or straight brush to the Flexicomb which helps to even out the rubber crumb. “We use the Flexicomb with the zigzag or straight brush three times a week, especially now with the high usage the pitches get. It helps to de-compact all of the rubber, levels it all off and stands all of the grass fibres back up. “The Litamina is an essential piece of equipment and this is used at least once a month, sometimes more if there are a lot of leaves on the surface. It is perfect for removing all of the rubbish and debris from the surface.

Syn-Pro by SISIS thrives at Beaumont.

“These two pieces of equipment are all I need for my synthetic surface maintenance and you can always rely on them to do a brilliant job. I like that they are solidly built but I also like the simplicity of them. You can tell that SISIS have thought a lot about the groundsmen using them because they are easy to set-up and are generally very user-friendly. They also never break down either.”

E2Pro the remedy for greens at Warren Golf Club Chris Hale, course manager at the Warren Together with David Chammings’ expertise, Golf Club in Devon, turned to Sherriff Chris developed a programme which would Amenity after looking for solutions to help help to prevent too much organic matter. decrease the percentage of thatch in the “I did a bit of research and spoke to a few greens profile. companies, but I was really impressed with David’s Sited on the Dawlish Warren National Nature knowledge and the advice that he gave me. Chris Hale, course manager Reserve, Warren Golf Club is a one of the only “We both looked through a number of at the Warren Golf Club true links courses on the south coast of Devon. fertilisers and then we found the correct The course is an 18 hole with beautiful views of the Exe formula for us which was the E2Pro 12.0.12 liquid. We felt Estuary to enjoy and each hole provides a rare challenge that this would be ideal to help reduce the organic matter in for both the experienced golfer and newcomers to the conjunction with aeration and mechanical tining.” beautiful game. The E2Pro high performance liquid fertiliser range is based Chris joined the club as course manager and quickly found on advanced formulation technology that provides rapid that he had to seriously consider a nutrient programme leaf penetration and quickly relieves nutrient deficiency appropriate for the Warren’s greens and started to take action. symptoms. The 12.0.12 is a phosphate free NK fertiliser which After receiving feedback from sports turf consultancy STRI contains added potassium for strengthening cell walls and results, Chris met with Sherriff Amenity’s David Chammings improving resilience to drought stress and disease. to discuss the 2 inches of thatch in the greens, which were Chris applies the E2Pro 12.0.12 to the greens at 30 l/ha identified as not just being a result of possibly a lack of aeration, once a month and has found that an application of Sherriff but potentially having too much nitrogen being applied. Amenity’s Seavolution (seaweed liquid) at 20 l/ha two weeks “I wasn’t sure exactly how much was being applied as I later has hugely complimented the E2Pro. couldn’t find any records kept, but I knew that a liquid ‘when “The E2Pro and the Seavolution mix have helped us to required’ feed was more suitable than using a granular,” reduce the nitrogen levels and the two products have been explains Chris. really good for us. It’s early days, but results have been good. “After hollow coring and starting the process of neutralising I’m hoping to see substantial growth and at the same time the thatch, my first aim was to promote a healthy grass plant I’m confident that these products will provide the correct through a steady liquid feed programme.” amount of nutrients without being overly excessive.”

The Landscaper | Issue 240 | September 2019



More deck options, storage, efficiency, performance and specifications. With less vibration, noise, cost and complication. The New ISEKI SF224 mower offers the most economical way to cut grass commercially with high productivity, plus the added benefit of the new Stage V compliant 22.5hp engine, enabling you to save money on fuel costs and initial purchasing cost. With a range of rotary or flail decks to suit various sites and cutting cycles, plus the large storage box allowing you to take all your tools and rubbish bags with you, the SF224 helps you to be even more efficient with your time. Contact your local dealer to book a demonstration today.

Telephone 01473 599266

WHATEVER THE PROBLEM Perennial is here to help Know someone who works with plants, trees or grass who is struggling physically, financially or personally? Our friendly and experienced team can help families through life-changing events with health, money and family support. Please spread the word that Perennial is here with free, confidential and personal support.

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The Landscaper Magazine: September 2019  

In this issue of The Landscaper Magazine we discover how taking up a landscaping related degree as a mature student can further prospects. P...

The Landscaper Magazine: September 2019  

In this issue of The Landscaper Magazine we discover how taking up a landscaping related degree as a mature student can further prospects. P...