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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a new customer who claims to prefer the "natural look" as opposed to the manicured lawn. Now mind you she lives in a neighborhood where every lawn is perfectly manicured. People who are cheap amaze me, she has actually convinced herself that she prefers her jasmine edged, yet not smooth and topped, and Japanese Yew (sp?) trimmed in a Xmas tree form rather than boxed. This clients yard has ultimate potential yet she just has to disagree with everything I suggest.
 

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The Yew as a Xmas tree is very common and is known as a Yew Cuspidata Capidata, other wise know as Pyramidal Cap Yew.

Some people do in fact appreciate the natural form of shrubs, though in time they will soon need the formal trimming.

All our plantings are handled over time to be presented as natural as they can, selective pruning is done to achieve this. However, at some time there is no alternative to forgo the selective prunging and cut back hard or do the formal trimming to prevent the plants from over growing the space intended.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
overgrown jungle compared to all of the other home owners in the hood. the whole issue is monetary with her. no chemicals, no trimming the torpedo shooots coming from the jasmine bed- this bed is huge and would really set her yard off since she's got very little grass due to the shade factor. I just don't understand why she doesn't want to maximize her property. the only thing she's got going is the shubbery and rose beds, yet she doesn't want to admit it would look better in another form she didn't think up herself.
 

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You CAN replace cheap!
 

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I did have a lot of customers that had the natural look landscaping. And they expected my to do landscaping maintenance on them. I didn't know where to start and stop.
 

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That is a problem tiedeman,
Where do you stop without going formal?It's a judgement call,and not always to their liking.Ya do the best you can with the information you have.I always try to be as specific as possible with these, but I always walk away questioning wether or not it is what they wanted, when done.
 

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Good grief, guys. Different plants started out being used in the landscape because of their shape, texture, color, and other qualities. If you just want to make plants into boxes, balls, pyramids or whatever: why not just buy plastic shapes and paint them green???

Hedge trimmers are for hedges (get it: HEDGE trimmers). A hedge is a plant screen used as a fence. And hedges are sheared to present the look of a fence.

Plants around buildings, and specimen plants, should have been selected for their space, and shearing these plants ruins their appearance. Of course, you have to have clients who understand that pruning is superior to shearing.
 

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We also try to use the gas shears only on "hedge" type plants....the rest we hand prune in order to keep the natural look of the plants...but they are neat and tidy after the hand pruning. It takes allot longer but in our opinion its the proper way to trim. We have gotten a number of mew customers because the way we trim is so different from most other companies. But in your case, being cheap, she would not go for our approach since she wont even pay for the shearing approach. I think I'd think long and hard about renewing her next year....she sounds like a pain in the neck, long term
 

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Not easy figuring out what the customer wants. We are not mind readers


what I did in the past was to offer to them to do it themselves. They usualy don't. Then the next year the same thing, later in the season I am in their face about the shrubs becoming to large.

I tell them that you will have to let me do them no later than next year as I see they should be done. If not tell me now, so you have time to find a new service.

In the meantime we have done them 2 years, added other accounts, can easily part ways with this one.
 

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Seems to me that the "natural look" of a lawn in my area right now would be about 10" tall and over run with weeds........how do you "maintain" that? My eXmark would cut too good to make her happy.....LOL

Maybe mow the lawn with really dull blades????
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I forgot to include the whole part of her calling us back to fire us after we left a few 3 inch sticks behind from the mower. This of course occured a day after the first cut. Long story short, I decided to drive over and collect the check rather than send her an invoice and wait for her to pay. As I arrived and we had the meeting of the minds pt.2, I simply informed her i was completely confused as to what she expected because she asked me to basically leave her yard looking like crap, yet make sure there were no 3 inch sticks left behind.
 
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