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Falon Land Studio LLC added this to How to Find and Hire a Great Landscape Contractor
Ask about sustainable practices. The contractor will be disrupting the site and installing new materials, which will impact the environment. Make that impact less damaging by using the most sustainable materials and methods possible. Some contractors have been using sustainable practices for a long time, while others are just catching on to the concept. Let the landscape contractor know if sustainability is important to you by discussing it early.You can gauge how well versed a contractor is in sustainable practices by asking some questions: What organic and sustainable practices do you use? If the contractor hesitates to answer, try asking more specific questions, like the ones below.Where will the materials be sourced from? It is best to use local stone and wood for your project to decrease the carbon footprint. Sourcing local materials can also save you money, because you won’t have to pay for materials to be shipped long distances. Do you recycle plant containers or return them to the nursery? Most wholesale nurseries take back plastic plant containers and clean them for reuse. This might seem like a small thing, but those little containers can add up to a lot of plastic in projects with large planted areas. The contractor is responsible for hauling away materials once the job is done, so make sure they will be recycled or brought back to a nursery for reuse.Do you use a mulch that’s free of chemicals and additives? Chemicals and dyes are used to make mulch in different colors, and they’re unnecessary additives. Go chemical free. The chemical-free mulches are usually less expensive anyway if they are from a local source. Do you use power tools or hand tools? A lot can be accomplished with hand tools, and some compact sites will even require the use of hand tools over power tools and motorized utility vehicles. Most contractors use a combination of both types. If your project is small, there won’t be a big need for big power machinery.