Engaging an inexperienced or unqualified Landscape designer or contractor can be often be a recipe for some very wasteful and expensive work that ultimately will have to be replaced, resulting in you paying far, far more than if you had had the correct advice from the outset

Let me give you a simple example. You and your neighbour had your houses completed at approximately the same time and you both want the area around the house to be turned over to lawn.

Your neighbour invested in a landscape design and construction specifications. You on the other hand thought that a waste of money and you could lay out the garden your self

You both contact two landscape contractors from the local paper and they each duly come out and measured the area and promised to send a quote by the following week.

When the quotes arrived, you cannot help but notice a huge disparity in the prices and decide that clearly the most expensive quotation is ripping you off and the clever thing to do is to engage the cheaper quote

Your neighbour on the other hand, who had engaged a landscape designer, who as part of the engagement provided had a set of specifications for what sort of lawn, how the lawn was to be laid and as such your neighbour engaged the more expensive contractor

Both projects were completed on the same day by the two different contractors and both looked exactly the same, while one cost nearly double the other.

Then the first really hot day came and all your turf died, almost overnight. And with it went your investment. In fact, more than just the investment because your would have, clean up the mess and then to repeat the whole process, making your project in fact more expensive than the original more expensive quote

Your neighbour on the other hand, his lawn looked fantastic

The first Quote allowed for raking the clay flat and then spreading 100 mm of sandy loam and then laying the turf.

In this instance flattening the clay base helped make a hard pan, making it difficult for the fine lawn roots to penetrate, nor the water. So under the lawn there is a hard dry base that the roots can’t get into. The sandy loam had no nutritional value and being so thin can get very hot very quickly

The result of this was when the first hot day came. The roots of the grass were unable to get to the cool lower soil, could not access any water and the ground got extremely hot. Killing the grass on the spot

Added to this the Landscaper selected a cheap seeded grass rather than a running grass like Buffalo so there were no rhizomes to assist in the lawn flourishing

The more expensive landscape, hoed compost and sand into the clay and applied 150 mm of compost soil then rolled out a creeping grass like the Buffalo

The hot day came and the roots were able to burrow deep to access the cool and moisture and the topsoil fed the plants

This is an extremely rudimentary example of the work you don’t see is what makes the difference and it applies to nearly all aspects of Landscape construction. So having a clear plan and a thorough set of constructions directions is critical before getting costs, to insure you don’t like the lawn, get burnt.

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