part time direction


LawnSite Member
I am a part timer who at one time worked for a landscaping company. At that time I was not prudent enough to "learn" specifics about certain aspects of the trade. This time frame for me was high school /college and I strictly was viewed as a grunt, consequently I didn't think beyond that. After this time frame I always loved getting my hands dirty in the back yard and was always eager to help a neighbor with an outdoor project.

Well, here I am twenty some years later as a start up with the initial intention of cutting some lawns and performing some small garden design/installs softscapes. Well, although it is March 1, I am finding that there is a great deal of interest is the garden design/redisign, mulching etc. I would love to just focus on the area without having to pick up any lawns. My question is can this client focus last. What I mean by that is come July / August will all this initial seasonal lust have waded regarding garden work? Do you think it is wise to pick up a lawn or two to keep things going or just keep rolling with what is coming in?


LawnSite Senior Member
For me, if the lawns are not way out in BFE, cuttin some grass can be a great way to get onto some properties and see what has been done and also suggest smart solutions to problem areas. We mow and maintain, but not for properties 30 miles away. We do go to a 40 mile away town to do work for a friend with alot work--annuals and yearly mulch


LawnSite Bronze Member
Cape Cod

Mowing = marketing, at least when you are first starting out. Not only do you have a captive audience in those that you mow for, but you are seen on the job and moving from one to the next.

Another benefit that I see for you in mowing, is that because you are a part timer you can get in, get out, and get to the next one very quickly.

Poping in a few plants here and there does not take much experience and knowledge. Selling yourself and following through as a design/build landscaper takes a lot. It has been a bit of a feast in the last few years (in my area). Lots of guys are able to get jobs that can be done much better by more established and experienced people. When things slow down, those jobs will go to only the best. That is going to leave a lot of guys out in the cold.

You really have to use your judgement. You might be able to land enough work to gain enough knowledge and experience to be one of the survivors in the next slow down.