What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a landscaper or lawn care professional during the COVID-19 pandemic?
To set up an appointment or consultation call with a lawn care professional or landscaper during the COVID-19 pandemic, take advantage of digital technologies to avoid face-to-face exposure. When searching for lawn mowing, landscaping and lawn care companies online, ask if they’ll do a video call to assess the job and give you an estimate. You can also go over strategies for completing the job and conducting virtual payments to stay safe.
How can I find out if a landscaper or lawn care professional is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?
To consult national guidelines on essential COVID-19 service providers and see whether a lawn care professional qualifies, visit a page on CISA’s website called Identifying Critical Infrastructure During COVID-19. This website contains 16 categories of critical infrastructure sectors that you can search through. However, not all jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure so you should also check your city or state’s government website.
Can I use digital payments to pay for outdoor landscaping and design, lawn mowing, tree trimming and other similar services?
Many outdoor landscaping and design, lawn mowing and tree trimming companies will likely accept some form of digital payment instead of cash or check. The COVID-19 pandemic will likely causing more businesses to adopt digital platforms like Zelle, PayPal, Venmo, Square Cash and Google Pay.
Search professionals’ online profiles to see if they list digital payment services, and ask them about their payment policies during a consultation call.
Because landscaping and lawn maintenance take place outdoors, it is unlikely that these professionals will need to enter your home.
To stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, practice social distancing at all times -- even with professionals doing work outside. You can minimize exposure during a consultation by using a video chat service. And when you pay, you can use a digital payment service like PayPal. Discuss strategies with any lawn mowing, landscaping, tree trimming and lawn care companies you may be considering.
Landscapers and lawn care professionals generally do not offer remote or virtual services. But if you come across a profile that states the landscaper is offering remote services, it’s best to contact them to see what type of remote work is offered.
Typically, lawn care and landscaping professionals can perform many of their duties without coming into physical contact with clients. Message local lawn mowing, landscaping, tree trimming, and lawn care companies near you to schedule a video call and inquire about remote services.
Keeping a lawn lush and green requires consistent mowing, weeding, watering, fertilizing and more. If your lawn is particularly large, it may make sense to hire a full-service lawn care provider. Whether you take a DIY approach or bring in the experts, maintaining your lawn requires a range of tasks.
Plan to mow the lawn often, allowing it stay longer than may seem convenient — longer grass is healthier grass. The general rule is to cut off no more than a third of the grass blade. This helps prevent damage to the lawn as well as keeping weeds from taking root. It’s also important to remove any weeds, then prevent new ones from growing. In spring, consider spraying a pre-emergent herbicide on your lawn to prevent crabgrass and other types of weeds from sprouting from seed. During other seasons, broadleaf weeds like dandelions can be pulled by hand or sprayed with weed killers. The best time to water your lawn is early in the morning, allowing the sun to help dry the grass. Make sure to thoroughly soak the lawn so that the water penetrates several inches into the ground.
Lawn care also requires feeding; look for a mixture of fast- and slow-release fertilizers that include nitrogen. Some lawns also benefit from aeration, which creates small holes to let air, water and nutrients penetrate the grass roots. Although most homeowners can manage these tasks on their own, a full-service lawn care company can handle them on a regular schedule, taking the guesswork out of maintaining a beautiful lawn.
Professional landscaping can help reinvent your outdoor space, boost your curb appeal and get a major return on investment with. Landscaping can encompass anything from adding new plants, trees and shrubs, to leveling the ground and laying sod for a lawn, to building in hardscaping such as sidewalks, water features or retaining walls. The national average landscaping price is $10,160. Landscaping prices can be far lower (with hourly rates ranging from $50 to $150) if you’re only seeking professional help with softscaping or seeking consultation on landscape design. Softscaping means adding or changing horticultural elements, such as planting a garden or adding a hedge. Hardscaping is where costs can really start to rise. Hardscaping requires labor and heavy equipment to excavate the earth; you may need to pour concrete, or you may need a pro who can transport and place gravel and other inorganic elements. Your total landscaping cost will vary based on the amount of work you want done, how much labor is required, and the cost of the materials you are using. A good rule of thumb for a major landscaping project, according to the American Society of Landscape Architects, is to budget 5 percent to 10 percent of the value of your home.
Having a beautiful lawn doesn’t just happen by magic. A multi-pronged approach to lawn care will result in a healthy lawn that will have your neighbors green with envy. The national average price for multi-service lawn care ranges from $40 to $50. Whether you tackle the project yourself or hire a lawn care professional, looking after your lawn requires consistent work. A baseline of lawn care is keeping your grass mowed and your irrigation system working properly. Fertilizing plants and grasses, as well as trimming and pruning foliage, may promote the health of your plants and lawn. Many lawn care pros offer different packages with varying monthly fees depending on your lawn size and the services you desire. Here are a few examples of average lawn care prices:
- 1,000- to 2,500-square-foot lawn: $60-$90 per month
- 5,000-square-foot lawn or larger: $110-$150 per month.
- Includes lawn maintenance, cleanups and irrigation repairs. The company trims shrubs, pulls weeds, blows out yard waste, fertilizes and does minor irrigation repairs.
- Up to 8,000-square-foot property: $30 per week/$120 per month.
- 8,001- to 15,000-square-foot property: $35 per week/$140 per month.
- 15,001- to 20,000-square-foot property: $40 per week/$160 per month.
- Includes mowing all turf grass areas; trimming grass away from fences, structures, trees, and lawn edges; and clearing or blowing all grass trimmings from driveways, sidewalks, curbs, etc.
Hiring a landscape architect is an investment in your home. Landscaping can reduce water bills, improve your home resale value, add to your daily living experience and significantly boost curb appeal. A landscape architect will draw the designs for your new landscape; you’ll want to hire a landscape contractor to carry out the plans. Many companies provide design-build landscaping services, with a company architect creating plans for your vision and the landscape contractor executing the vision. With the proper academic background and licensing, a person can be both landscape architect and landscape contractor. Here are a few tips for finding a great landscape architect:
- Research online portfolios and find several landscape architects whose work interests you.
- Read online reviews of client experiences.
- Research whether the landscape architects you are interested in are currently licensed and in good standing with the licensing board, and check whether any complaints have been issued against them. Each state will have their own searchable database. For example, you can search for California landscape architects via the state’s Department of Consumer Affairs.
- Request bids from your selected landscape architects.
- Hire the one you like the most, taking care to have a clearly written contract outlining scope of work.
For more, check out our tips for smart hiring on Thumbtack.