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Where can I learn hardscaping?

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by RJR7110, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. RJR7110

    RJR7110 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 183

    I have a few mowing accounts but i really want to learn how to hard scape. Can anybody tell me whats the best way to learn and what type of license or degree i need to be able to do it for money legally.
  2. glaciator

    glaciator LawnSite Member
    Messages: 66

    Great question. If you are talking about dry stack natural stone walls, stone patios, timber walls, flagstone walkways, etc. then your best bet is to work on a crew that is already doing this kind of work. Research online can help, but learning from experienced tradesmen (and women) is the best. That is how you learn the tricks of the trade, so to speak. Here in CO, there is no licensing or certification required to do patios and walkways set dry. Walls over 24" high require an engineers certification, but I have seen so many done without, it's amazing. I see poorly built walls crumbling all the time (stone) because people don't understand what makes them stay up. Dry set patios and walks also take time to learn to do right so that they do not settle, are level, etc. Usually people use stone pieces that are too small and/or too thin. I use 2" prime flagstone pieces that are never smaller than about 4 square feet and as big as 20 square feet. Big solid pieces just don't move! Check out more of the hardscape links at this and other sites. For manufactured stone, I must defer to the experts....I (personally) hate that stuff....but that's just me.
  3. S&S Outdoor Services

    S&S Outdoor Services LawnSite Member
    Messages: 170

    For patios and retaining walls there are classes you can take all around the country. Check out the Interlocking Concrete Paver Institute for a list of where their classes will be. Check out the National Concrete Masonry Assosciation for their classes on SRW (segmental retaining walls). If you go through these classes and pass, you'll be certified for them which is a good selling point. I'm planning on putting myself and all my guys through both of these certifications in the spring. I think they recommend having one year experience to go through these though, so like glaciator said, I would try to work for someone else for awhile. Then you're not liable for any of it when you mess up! good luck
  4. Fiano Landscapes

    Fiano Landscapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 69

    Another resource is the Belgard University. They hold an event every winter and Old Castle really pumps money into education in our area. Check with your local Belgard Authorized Dealer to see if there is one in your area. Our business has suceeded greatly with having the folks from Belgard helping us!

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