Whether you have just bought a house with a garden, whether you have finally decided to showcase the m2 of terrace on your plot, or whether you want to landscap a large park, you will have to call on competent professionals.
If you are unfamiliar with outdoor landscaping, and you want to see more clearly when choosing a park or garden company, this article will give you the keys.
1 – Choosing a business for a park or garden supposes to clearly define its needs
To choose one or more companies for the landscaping of the garden, it is necessary to define your needs, because the professionals of the outside are for the most part, specialized in one field.
Landscaper, nurseryman, horticulturist … First of all, let’s clarify a few definitions:
– A landscaper is a professional who is able to design a garden, taking into account its topography, possible arrangements, and making a choice of plants adapted to the climate and the atmosphere desired by its owners.
Sometimes wrongly called landscape architect, a title that does not exist in France, he can however be recognized as a landscape designer, according to his skills and diplomas.
– Thegarden designer is the professional who will take care of the concrete realization of the garden: it is equipped with heavy machinery which allows in particular to carry out earthworks. He is generally also competent in masonry, and can create terraces, garden stairs, wells or fountains.
Some landscapers are also planners, others are only garden designers.
– A piscinist, also called piscinier, is a professional specializing in the installation of swimming pools. He must be competent in planning, plumbing, masonry, and master the techniques of waterproofing and chemical water balance. He can be a manufacturer of the swimming pools he installs, or a simple dealer-installer.
– A nurseryman will be able to provide quality plants, especially large ones, with a wide choice, and which you will not necessarily find in garden centers.
No longer specializing in a particular type of species, it will also be more competitive in terms of quality / price than garden centers.
In terms of transport logistics, sometimes with large trees, it can either have its own delivery system, or entrust the plants to your garden developer.
– A horticulturalist takes care of younger and smaller plants, but also flowers and fruit trees. You will have to work with a horticulturalist if you are looking for young plants, that you have time to grow, or if you are looking for very specific flowers or fruit trees.
So that makes many different jobs, which can sometimes leave the private garden owner very uneasy about the choice of the steps to be taken.
In fact, these are the essential criteria of your project which should lead you to contact this or that type of professional:
- The size of your garden,
- Your level of requirement for the realization,
- The budget you have,
- Your priorities in arbitrating it.
If you don’t know where to start, you can contact a landscaper : He will be able to explain the procedures to you in more detail and guide you according to your expectations.
Know that there are as many possibilities as there are professionals, depending on the budgets and requirements of each client.
If you are looking for a wide choice of landscapers, especially for a small budget, you can for example contact the FFP.
If you are looking for a rather high-end landscaper who has already proven himself, there are specialist websites that feature pre-selected professionals, such as the Arch & Home website.
2 – How to choose the right company for parks and gardens
Whether you have contacted a landscaper or not, you will have to get an idea of the parks and gardens companies you are going to commission.
There are several ways to ensure the skills of these professionals.
Here is some advice :
– if you use the internet, prefer a site that clearly sets out its selection criteria,
– if you opt for a recommendation, make sure that the company is based in France, correctly registered with the registry, and check how long it has been in existence,
– in any case, ask to see a series of recent achievements of the professional that interests you, in photos, or in reality if possible. A nursery visit can be very useful,
– if the project is advanced, speak directly with one of the managers of the company, to make sure that your fundamental expectations will be taken into account: for example, if you have time constraints, discretion, questions of ecological order, etc.
– finally, once your expectations and the service have been clarified, always sign written contracts, clearly mentioning the fundamental elements mentioned previously in your discussions.
In any case, it is important to assign a company adapted to the size of your project. For example, if you have a small garden, don’t look to work with a big company that does big projects or town planning, even if it has been recommended to you.
If you don’t have the budget to make the garden or park of your dreams, you can always spread the project over several years : a good landscaper will know how to sequence the work for you, starting with the structuring arrangements, down to the smallest plants.