Jamesmowslawns

LawnSite Member
Location
Massachusetts
Sorry for the dark title.

Is the landscape maintenance industry dying? With tons of peoples growing concern for the environment do any of you picture the work dwindling out? Kinda concerned about future business. I mean truly grass is an ecological wasteland, all it does it look good and is costly to maintain. (I do love maintaining it though)

I owned/operated from 2010-2018 and ended with 25 mow/maintain accounts and 40 plowing accounts. After a year working as a farm foreman for someone else not myself I realize I need to be working for myself!!!

Do you still thinks there’s plenty of work to be done and continue that way for the next decade or two?? Keep in mind I’m only 25 years old, 26 in March and that’s why I’m trying to get the long term outlook on this.

And on top of that what do you think will be the next big “facet” of landscaping (organic lawn care, xeriscapes, ecological design, edible landscapes etc) I’d be willing to go down a different route and still offer maintenance but don’t want to look back and say “I wish I’d got in on that sooner”

Would love your input as I’m highly considering starting back up again come April. Thanks in advance.

James
 

Mark Stark

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Rochester, NY
If (a big if) and when it ever "dies" it will be more than 20 yrs for that to happen. Think of it this way....

Electric cars have been out since the 90s. How many people do you know with one today? It takes years and years for something like a new drive system on a car to come around. Now think about everyone ripping out there grass and going to something else. Probably never happen. Plus, people still need mulch work, plantings, leaf work, etc., ALL of which are good for the environment.

Oh and as someone else already said, people are lazy. They're getting more and more lazy everyday. For a society where people try every new fangled way to lose weight, you'd think they would trying going outside and doing some labor at their own house at least :laugh:

Just my 2 cents Thumbs Up
 

Love the Green Biz

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
NYC Metro Area
Contrary to popular perceptions and pie in the sky environmental types (yeah they believe we can all get off fossil fuels AND keep breeding like flies) Lawns are not an "ecological wasteland" but a supplier of numerous benefits:

https://www.trugreen.com/lawn-care-...urf-grasses/dig-deeper/benefits-of-turf-grass

And keep breathing deeply-an acre of grass supplies enough oxygen for the daily needs of 64 people. Not bad for a "dissed and doomed" item eh?
 

hackitdown

LawnSite Gold Member
Location
Groton, MA
I often think about the total pointlessness of keeping a lawn. It is a truly frivolous expense. Fertilizer, irrigation, weekly cuts...and if you think about it, it has no real benefit to the customer.

I make a living applying fertilizer, so I push the beauty and other benefits...but are they real?

I recently met a guy that owns a mansion (yes, and actual 1870 mansion, 13k sq/ft house!) that spent $90,000 last year on landscaping. In my opinion, his landscaping isn't really all that nice (too many trees that are out of scale). But he has 5 acres of elaborate stuff, so he felt like he had no choice. I put a picture of the entrance below, but you can't see much. That wall is more than 6 feet high, and surrounds the entire 5 acres.
Screenshot 2020-01-07 at 9.42.34 AM.png


I had customers that spent $800 to $1000 per month on maintenance. What does it get them in return?
 

Trees Too

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
USDA Zone 6a
Sorry for the dark title.

Is the landscape maintenance industry dying?
Dying? NO! Evolving, ever changing? YES!

Trends to look for:
1) More interest in "going organic".
2) A younger customer base that is more prone to "do their own homework" and research things.
3) More City Ordinances restricting gas-powered equipment, favoring battery powered instead.
4) Encouraging installation of "low-maintenance" landscapes.
5) LCO's may meed to diversity and offer other integrated services.
 

Crazy 4 grass

LawnSite Platinum Member
What would the alternatives be for our yards? Astro turf? Way worse for the environment... it's no good for worms birds etc.
Just let whatever grows naturally grow where it grows? There are some who might like that however I'd venture to say many would not. Functionality it could be a nightmare as well as aesthetically unpleasing. My vote goes with go start your company there will be work for many years to come.
 
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