For the OP I had the opportunity to get a 2 yr Land/Hort degree back in the early 70's. Being I am in this business now I wish I had and started my business back then. Though I do not regret not doing so because I went in other directions. Had the opportunity to make good money. Had it for a while though when the economy took a dump in 2007 it dumped me as well. After going through 99 weeks of UEI. Low pay temp, part time jobs, I hung on till 2011. At that point when you hit 55 people do not want to hire you. They can get a person in their 20's for a third of what you were getting paid. They do not even say we will hire you for a third of what you were making. They also deem you to old to train in a new career. Though when most people change jobs every 2.5 years on average. So when that 22 year old guy quits, or I drop dead from a heart attack what is the difference. I did not want to work a minimum wage job. Did not want to be a greeter at Wal Mart. I wanted to work for my self. For many reasons. So I am in my fourth year now and I am 60. In 2011 I started out with already owning a 01 Suburban. That is my back up tow vehicle. A 05 Jeep TJUL, the LWB model. Roll Bar wind screen that converts the Jeep into a 2dr pickup cab. I removed the rear seat, carpets, side and rear curtains, and now have a pickup bed. I had a 4x8 Harbor Freight trailer that was bought 06 because I did not want to get the inside of the Suburban dirty. I had a 42" JD LT180, 20" Sears push, line trimmer, borrowed my friend Sears hand held blower. That thing had a hard time blowing out a candle on a birthday cake, electric trimmer, electric chain saw, and a load of hand tools. I started my business with the stuff I used to take care of my own property. Still with the 01 Suburb and 05 TJUL though now the trailer, all of the mowers and hand helds have been replaced and added to. No cash was needed to outfit me. So I am here because of that and very limited employment opportunity. I enjoy being my own boss. Though I will make the same money if I had a full time $10 an hr, 40 hr a week job. Though I work half the time. I would rather of started another business though I do not have the money. My son is looking to start his own business not landscape related in a year or two. If I had the money I would offer to be his partner and get things started by spring of next year. Yes I would throw away my Landscape empire because it most likely will never grow large enough to support a management staff where I do not have to be there full time and can be semi retired. Also none of my sons want to come into this business so who am I building this for? No one. I am doing this for the income. If I had a better way I would not be here. Even though I enjoy the work. Why? Because in Landscape when you have a lot of competition growth is slow. I need to make enough money so I do not need to collect SS when I hit 62. I am running out of time and options. You , OP have plenty of both do not waste them. US Park Rangers (LEO) get paid $75,000. With your back ground you would get hired. Many are here because we lack options. The reasons do not matter. Do not squander yours. Every year new people join LS. Most never come back. Because the statistic that most businesses fail in the first year. Yes they got in because they needed very little money. They did not make enough money with essentially no overhead. They had no business rent because they worked out of their garage or mom's garage. Had no car payments. No rent because they lived in mom's basement. Just had to buy line, gas, 2 stroke oil. And they could not make it. Because it is not that easy to get customers that will pay well. This is why along with your attitude is why people are telling you to forget about it.