Top 5 Level Up Stories of 2021 - The Edge from the National Association of Landscape Professionals

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Top 5 Level Up Stories of 2021

The Level Up series is a collection of articles that share the successful strategies that help landscape and lawn care companies get to the next level. Check some out of the most popular stories in this series for 2021.

Click on each company’s name to read the full Level Up article.

5) emi Landscapes

Photo: emi Landscape

When emi Landscape was started in 1983, it was out of necessity. Founder Ed Wigfield had been laid off from his construction job and had just built his own house.

Since then the company has grown and moved from the residential market to purely commercial work. Based in Macungie, Pennsylvania, they are a full-service commercial industrial landscape maintenance and snow removal company with a current annual revenue of $7 million. They experienced 30 percent growth this year.

4) Green & Clean Landscaping

Photo: Green & Clean Landscaping Inc.

Growing up in Mexico, Alex Romo always had a business of some sort. When he moved to the United States, he got a job at Costco, where he worked for 12 years, eight of which were in a management role. Now he is the president and general manager of his company Green & Clean Landscaping, Inc. based in Greensboro, North Carolina.

“As I continued to grow from the one-man-show operation, I learned that to retain my employees I had to offer them what the competition was not — just as Costco provided the best wages and benefits in their industry — I strived to give my employees pay they could not find elsewhere and provide them with opportunities to learn about hardscapes, pesticides, and irrigation,” Romo says.

3) Nanak’s Landscaping

Photo: Nanak’s Landscaping

When Deva S. Khalsa acquired a lawn company, Nanak’s Landscaping, in Miami in 1977, in true entrepreneurial spirit, he threw caution into the wind and moved to South Florida. He soon discovered the previous owner was only bringing in $800 a month while operating costs for the company were $1,200 a month.

Over time, Khalsa was able to turn the residential lawn company into one of the largest landscape contracting companies in the state of Florida. There have been several hard times for Nanak’s years of business where they almost had to close. A loyal customer base kept them alive and now their annual revenue is $17 million.

2) Martin Landscape

Photo: Whitney Spurlock Photography

Wade Martin started his company Martin Landscape with a desire to provide a place where people could grow. Ever since opening their doors in 2004, the Port Royal, South Carolina-based company has invested in their employees.

Since hiring an HR director, Martin Landscape’s retention rates have improved and they’ve adopted new recruiting methods as well. They also work to provide training and growth opportunities for their employees. The company runs an open book of business and made a game out of it. Martin says their employees like the healthy competition among each other.

1) Maldonado Nursery & Landscaping, Inc.

Photo: Maldonado Nursery and Landscaping Inc.

Maldonado Nursery & Landscaping, Inc. is one of the largest privately-owned Hispanic businesses in the United States. But this San Antonio, Texas, company wasn’t always so large. The going was rough starting out as Jerry Maldonado’s father had invested $20,000 for the raw land where the company was originally located.

“We lived on the property for several years without any of the basic services and really struggled,” Maldonado says. “Several times we just didn’t want to continue but my father insisted we not give up. My dad always taught us the value of hard work, perseverance, working for yourself and good old-fashioned Judeo-Christian values.”

Do you want to share your company’s success story? Contact Jill Odom to be considered for a future Level Up feature.

Jill Odom

Jill Odom is the content manager for NALP.