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    • andrew wilson

      Andrew Wilson: Breaking into the garden design industry

      Andrew Wilson provides Pro Landscaper with an insight into the position of garden design graduates upon leaving the London College of Garden Design. He tackles the pressing issue of breaking into the market as a new designer and suggests what could assist them in such a competitive market. As I waved goodbye to our LCGD class of graduates in July, I couldn’t help but wonder: ‘How many of them will make it?’ I always ponder on this subject – in fact many of them do make a success of their new career, but it’s a long and winding road as…

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    • scary plants

      8 scary plants to fend off trick-or-treaters

      Nature can be pretty scary, and plants are definitely a big part of this – though tarantulas probably take the biscuit. From poisonous fruits to spike-covered branches, in the spirit of Halloween, Pro Landscaper has collated eight of the most scary plants in the world! Black bat flower Chinese myshetsvet This flower can grow to be as long as 12 inches and has ‘whiskers’ that can grow up to 28 inches in length. The Black Bat Flower is native to tropical regions in south east Asia. Bleeding Tooth Fungus Hydnellum Peckii The body of this plant can ‘bleed’ a bright…

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    • winter

      How to care for a garden during winter

      Pro Landscaper speaks with Tiger Sheds, who have surveyed the nation to unveil the UK’s garden habits. It reveals that a massive two in five (40%) of Brits don’t take precautions to prepare their garden or garden buildings for the cooler winter weather. What’s more, 52% completely abandon their gardens and fail to do any gardening throughout winter. Almost one in ten (9%) said that they don’t care for their garden in winter because they think that their plants will die regardless. 8% said they would replace anything that that the winter weather damages – but at what cost? Only…

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    • bees

      The best plants for supporting bees

      With a huge focus on keeping bee populations at a healthy, sustainable level, the right plants are essential. Bee’s importance in the public eye is at a high after the appointment of Chris Beardshaw as the first ‘Bee Resistant’ ambassador, and Alexandra Froggat’s garden promoting bee awareness. Bees are an essential part of the natural world, pollinating plants and allowing their growth. Estimations show that one third of food consumed is a result of bee pollination! In light of this, Pro Landscaper has collated the top six plants to help the bees, so they can in turn, help us.   Monarda…

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    • pub gardens

      Top 5 pub gardens in the UK

      Since over one third of houses now have no access to a private green space, pub gardens offer people an opportunity to appreciate beautifully crafted landscapes they may not otherwise have a chance to see. Pro Landscaper has collated the five finest pub gardens in the UK, worth the journey for both an appreciation of the greenery and a tipple of your choice. The Elephant’s Nest Inn, Tavistock, Devon This stunning garden has views of both Brentor church and the moor and even has its own cricket ground. The Church Inn, Knutsford, Cheshire The terrace here offers unrivalled rolling views…

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    • landscaping profession

      Attracting a wider audience to the landscaping profession, with Tim Howell

      I’ve written many times about the career opportunities within the landscaping profession, and the difficulties that we face in attracting and retaining talented individuals. It’s a challenge that isn’t going away and is one that will continue to affect our business’, or us personally, over the next decade. There are already industry wide actions in place to encourage school leavers to consider landscaping as a career. Now is the time to broaden our appeal and accessibility to a far wider group of people.  At Mitie we carry out an independent survey every year to measure employee engagement. It’s well known…

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    • garden trends

      Garden trends for 2019

      For some design inspiration, this article will bring you up to speed on the garden trends forecasts for 2019.   Geometric The love of geometric patterns continues to grow and will likely feature heavily on a clients’ wish-lists. Influenced by the renaissance of 1980s New Memphis style, this look one of two ways:   Playful – think pastels or primary colours, the choice is wide open. Restrained and elegant – a more muted palette of whites and greens Of course, the nature of this style means that these projects will underpin strong patterns and shapes. You can think about a…

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    • forests

      7 of the most breathtaking forests in the world

      As a company full of forest fanatics, Husqvarna is somewhat of an authority when it comes to assessing the quirks, beauty and uniqueness the world’s forests have to offer. They’ve put their helmets together with Pro Landscaper to come up with seven of the most breathtaking which are well worth a visit. Crooked Forest – Poland There are many theories around where pines get their twist. Were they designed to grow this way to create furniture and abandoned during the war, or was it a bad snowstorm that pushed the trunks in to this position? Since 1930 there are 400…

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    • rudest

      7 plants with the rudest names you’ve ever heard

      It’s been over two years since we shared the Gardening Express’ list of the top 10 plants with rude (but hilarious) names. So, we have scoured the glorious world of plants to bring you another seven with the rudest names that are sure to tickle you a little. 1.  Bastard Toadflax Latin name: Comandra A monotypic genus, the plant has a disjunct distribution. Its four subspecies occur in North America and the Mediterranean. 2.  Naked Man Orchid Latin name: Orchis italica Native to the Mediterranean, this flower blossoms into its highly amusing shape in mid-spring. 3.  Bushman’s Buttocks Latin name: Lithops…

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    • flexism

      Flexism in the workplace

      ‘Flexism’. The term meant for allowing flexible working hours is now commonplace in most businesses. This is essential in the modern day, as working parents or those with a duty of care for one another need hours that can work around the other integral and immovable parts of their life. This week, Pro Landscaper speaks with Giles Heap, managing director of CED Stone Group, about the principals of ‘flexism’ and how it affects his business. “While thinking about this subject and chatting to one of our employees, I realised that I personally did not think that we have any issues…

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    • toxic

      The 10 most toxic cities in the UK

      A new interactive guide looks at the most toxic cities in the UK. This factors in air pollution levels, active power stations, traffic volume and landfill sites. This highlights the importance of green space and public parks to balance these findings, and clean up some UK cities.   Leeds is the most toxic city to live in with five electrical substations and a staggering annual average traffic flow of 33,545 vehicles a day. The city is revealed to have one of the highest rates of carbon emissions, producing an astonishing 4,000kt per year.   Since trees can absorb up to…

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    • winter

      Winter proofing a client’s garden

      Winter is traditionally the time when gardens begin to look a bit jaded. As the temperatures fall and the nights grow darker, it can be all too easy to abandon nature to its own devices. All landscapers, however, know that while winter does whittle plants away, this reduction in greenery can be useful. It allows a layout review to create new and exciting plans for the next year, and to focus on maintenance jobs. Focusing on the following areas will keep a client’s outdoor areas safe, tidy, and ready for the onset of Spring.   1. Clearance and Composting  …

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    • nick coslett

      The landscaping industry speaks on Nick Coslett retiring

      Nick Coslett, industry renowned plantsman with an illustrious career working as marketing manager for Palmstead Nurseries and previous BALI South Thames chairman, is retiring at the end of September. Pro Landscaper speaks to the people within the landscaping community who worked closely with Nick over the years to hear their thoughts on his career, what he means to the industry and some personal stories. Rae Wilkinson, owner, Rae Wilkinson Design Limited Nick has always been a fantastic front man for Palmstead – he is a natural networker and a warm and friendly man who is passionate about the industry. His…

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    • october

      Pro Landscaper October issue review

      Pro Landscaper’s October issue is jammed with your monthly dose of landscaping news and must-read features. Here we break down the highlights and features we believe will improve your business or spark your curious side. Let’s Hear it From: Steve Etheridge, owner, Esse Landscapes The Sussex-based landscaping businessman takes us through how Esse Landscapes operates as a contractor and the type of projects the company undertakes. Steve also tackles some hot industry topics, such as staffing, training and market saturation in the area his business operates, saying: “There’s enough work out there for everyone.” Crime Wave: Angus Lindsay Crime is…

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    • silent city

      Takeaways from the Silent City environmental conference

      Silent City, now in its fourth year, is a two-day conference held by leading equipment manufacturer Husqvarna. It focuses on the environmental impact that green spaces and landscaping has on the environment. The two days aim to inform attendees of how this can be reduced through best practice and cutting-edge equipment.   This year’s event was in Hamburg, Germany. A forward-thinking place, Hamburg is the first German city to ban older diesel cars and has green space conservation as a priority, making it a fitting location for the Silent City conference. Day 1 Day one began with talks from the World…

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    • shady areas

      Top 7 plants that thrive in shady areas

      As the dull greys of winter loom ever closer, plant exposure to sunlight is restricted further and further. Pro Landscaper rounds up seven of the top plants that thrive in shady areas. Sarcococca ruscifolia A compact plant, sometimes suckering evergreen shrubs with simple, leathery leaves and tiny, fragrant creamy-white flowers in winter or spring.  Daphne oleoides A shrub of the family Thymelaeaceae, it is native to the southern Europe, northern Africa, and Asia. Commonly sprouts four-lobed flowers and colourful berries. Geranium This species can be annuals, biennials and perennials, herbaceous or evergreen. Geranium usually has palmately lobed or divided leaves,…

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    • invasives science

      Roundup of Invasives Science Live

      Pro Landscaper attended the Invasives Science Live workshop in Cardiff last week. The event was a ‘who’s who’ in the weed killing industry, and the day was packed with informative talks and an onsite visit. The day began at the St David’s Hotel where attendees were given a run-through on the history of glyphosate, from its conception in 1950, all the way to existing legislation on the weed killer. This was followed by talks from Advanced Invasives on the dangers of Japanese Knotweed, how it is best dealt with, and the impact it can have on property. Attendees were then…

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    • podium awards

      Pro Landscaper launches the Podium Awards

      Pro Landscaper is thrilled to announce the launch of the Podium Awards! An award like no other, the Pro Landscaper Podium Awards recognise the achievements, past and present, of landscapers, landscape architects and garden designers in the podium landscaping industry. The Podium Awards give projects that may have been previously overlooked the recognition they deserve. The awards will be judged in five separate categories and will focus on: The ability to showcase excellent core skills, meet the clients brief, effective use of products and plants and an innovative use of logistics. All projects must have been completed by 1 October…

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    • nurture landscapes

      Nurture Landscapes acquires Grace Landscapes

      Nurture Landscapes has continued its expansion as it acquires landscape and ground maintenance firm, Grace Landscapes. This comes after acquiring Gavin Jones back in February. Grace Landscapes was founded 39 years ago and has annual sales in excess of £6m, providing grounds maintenance and landscape construction across the north with its 116 members of staff. When asked how the acquisition came about, managing director Peter Fane said: “I’ve known the owners Tim Grace and Hugh Pawsey and have greatly admired their business for years – they’re very much the Gavin Jones of the north. The company is full of great…

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    • 30 under 30

      30 Under 30: The Next Generation 2018 award winners annouced

      The Pro Landscaper 30 Under 30: The Next Generation 2018 winners are out! This year’s awards continued to receive excellent entries from people across all areas of the industry including landscaping, horticulture, landscape architecture, grounds maintenance and arboriculture. The judges deliberated long and hard over a sea of fantastic applications, deciding upon the following 30 whom all have very bright futures ahead of them: Adam Newson – Ground Control – Landscape Architecture Alexandra Buckley – Provender Nurseries – Supplier Caitlin McLaughlin – Thrift Landscapes – Garden Design Connor Scott – E Williams Landscaping – Landscaping Ed Higgins – Hosta Consulting…

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    • health and safety

      Essential health and safety considerations for outdoor landscaping

      Health and safety is an integral aspect of landscape design. Whatever the aesthetic considerations of a project, they must not put its end users at risk. For public or communal spaces, good safety practice is upheld by legal constraints. For example, the Equality Act of 2010 requires public spaces to be accessible and safe for use by disabled users. This includes those in wheelchairs, but there is a duty of care as well for projects commissioned by private clients.   Precautions around planting, such as avoiding poisonous species in areas with young children are essential. The safety aspects of landscaping…

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    • garden pests

      Dealing with garden pests

      There are many protected species of animals and plants in the UK and it is easy to fall foul of regulations when clearing out garden pests if you don’t do your research.   There are also many species of animal which are not protected, but which can present a pest problem.   I will begin by looking at those species that benefit from legal protection. The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 includes all the following species:   Bats Great crested newts Badgers Dormice Voles Otters Natterjack toads Various reptiles   This is not an exhaustive list, so contact a qualified…

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    • accessibility

      Accessibility and inspiration at the St. George’s rooftop garden

      In the South West of London, St George’s Hospital recently had a stunning roof garden installed, designed by RHS Gold medalist Tony Woods, director at Garden Club, London. This week, Pro Landscaper speaks with both Tony, and chair of The John King Brain Tumour Foundation, the charity that will be adopting the garden, Laura King, to find out about the design’s inspiration, the garden’s meaning and its accessibility to less mobile patients. The Design With its rooftop location, subjecting the garden to different weather conditions to grounded work, Tony runs us through the horticultural considerations made to account for this. “This…

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    • website

      7 ways your website can stay ahead of the competition

      Maintaining a positive online presence can go a long way to helping you build brand awareness for your business. The way your website conveys your company’s message speaks volumes about how you want to present the firm.   When it comes to your website, staying up to date with current trends is imperative to staying ahead of the game. Creating a simple, clean design which is aesthetically pleasing, performs well and engages readers will help to improve user experience.   As a full-service agency and Google Premier Partner, at Adtrak we work across the UK providing a complete range of…

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    • botanical gardens

      Top 10 most ‘Instagrammed’ botanical gardens

      Instagram has one billion users every month and 400 million daily users of Instagram stories, many sharing visits to stunning botanical gardens. A recent study carried out by MyVoucherCodes unveils the ‘Most Instagrammed Botanical Gardens’ across the UK. Visitor figures for botanical gardens increased by 7.3% in 2017, compared with the year before. 1.  Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew – 368,018 Hashtagged photos Kew is London’s largest UNESCO World Heritage site, offering something from every stage of the Gardens’ History. There are more than 90 attractions to visit, such as the Temperate House, The Hive, The Treetop Walkway and the Palm…

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