Earthwise Horticultural Services
207 Satsuma Drive
Sanford, FL 32771
Custom Fire Pits, Custom Water Features, Drought Tolerant Landscaping, Edible Gardens, Garden Design, Hardscaping, Landscape Design, Landscape Plans, Landscape Supplies, Organic Gardens, Pond Construction, Pool Landscaping, Drip Irrigation Installation, Landscape Construction, Landscape Drainage System Installation, Outdoor Lighting Installation, Pergola Construction, Retaining Wall Construction, Landscape Installation, Xeriscaping, Natural Stone Services, Irrigation Improvement, Plant Selection
Altamonte Springs, Casselberry, Heathrow, Lake Mary, Lake Monroe, Longwood, Mid Florida, Oviedo, Sanford, Wekiva Springs, Winter Springs, Orlando, Winter Park, Maitland
MSC Environmental Horticulture UF
In short, it comes down to the fact that during the planning phase they did not accept two of my key recommendations and after they job they did not follow my instructions. I fully empathize with their concerns and went to great lengths to help make it right. But I find it odd that they did not mention two key factors in this project.
First they live in an area that has a significant deer population. We discussed this topic in detail and I suggested a wide variety of plants well known for deer resistance from which they selected the plants themselves. I even provided copies of the resources I used. In the end they selected many plants that had good deer resistance, but not optimal. I pointed this out, but the clients elected to ‘give it a go’ and declined to accept my top recommendations.
Second, they live in a development that had fill dirt brought in during construction. It is nonnative clay soil. This type of soil holds water creating an extremely wet muck situation. I was aware of this and recommended plant material well adapted to wet soils. But, the irrigation system was set up as if they had typical Florida sand. The system was absolutely flooding the area for the new plants. The plants I recommended can handle wet soil, but not constant flood conditions. I brought this up, and recommended a simple conversion for the irrigation system that would alleviate this issue. Again the client declined to accept the recommendation due to the added expense which was minimal compared to the size of the job. I even went ahead and converted a small portion at no charge the flooding was so bad.
I did have a strategy to overcome both of these situations. The deer started to sample the plants which raised concern. I was on the spot with a low/no cost option to overcome this; which they declined. I also calibrated and set the irrigation zone for minimal application; which shortly after I left was put right back to where it was before. In the end, it came out that they were taking advice from the lawn service over mine.
In truth, I almost declined to do this job because these folks did not follow these two key recommendations. I don't like to participate in projects that have a diminished chance of success due to poor decision making. I find it strange that someone would hire a qualified service provider to assist with problem solving and then refuse to follow the recommendations. It’s like going to the doctor and being diagnosed with high blood pressure, having the doctor recommend a detailed course of action, refusing to follow those instructions, and then blaming the doctor that your blood pressure did not get better.
One more stifling aspect was that from the start, I was working with Mrs. Ankerholz during the in depth consultation phase through to planning and plan presentation. Mr. Ankerholz was only lightly involved in these phases. After the project began and after it was finished, he stepped in after the fact and began to raise concerns that had been previously discussed and agreed upon with Mrs. Ankerholz. I got the impression there was a communication disconnect between the two. I patiently took the time to walk through every question he had, returning to the property multiple times over a two-month period after the job to spend time going over everything. But in the end Mr. Ankerholz kept insisting on service and replacements outside of our agreement as well as replacements that were simply not necessary. If they had followed my straight forward instructions they would not be having a negative result.
If you are reading this I want to thank you for taking the time to do so. I am a small niche service provider and specialize in what I do. I make every effort to build strong lines of communication and genuinely listen to my clients. I have many references available both professional and private. I think that the level of detail I have given my reply to this review also gives you a sense of just how much I care about my work and your project. Thank you.