It’s time to take advantage of your landscape company’s property. Whether your shop is located on a side street or in an industrial parkway, there are ways to showcase your landscape or design/build talents and services on your own home turf. A portfolio of your services is usually shared with potential clients using photos on your website or social media. Imagine the client response from seeing examples of your projects in person — being able to interact directly with the plants and materials used. Getting your clients to interact with what their own landscape could be will help them visualize the scope and enjoyment of a landscape installation they may be considering. Get the competitive advantage when submitting a design or installation proposal by also requesting your customers come for a visit or a tour of your property and its landscape.

The Klausing Group has made their facility in Lexington, Kentucky, a sustainable showcase of green infrastructure projects. Walking up to their property, the first thing you notice is the facility’s beautiful landscape. What better way to display your services?

They have designed and installed multiple projects to transform their facility’s property, including a retention basin turned rain garden, a green roof and a permeable paver parking lot.

Dan Stever explains how the rain garden at The Klausing Group property functions.

Use your facility to inspire customers

Although the facility serves as an inspiration for potential landscape projects and ideas, it can be a budget issue for some clients to be able to replicate the elements that The Klausing Group has on their property.

The green roof and permeable pavers can be more expensive projects for customers to invest in and are typically requested for new construction. Most existing places need to retrofit their infrastructure to be able to support a green roof, according to Dan Stever, director of employee development and outreach for The Klausing Group.

The Klausing Group used part of a grant to install a permeable paver parking lot.

Rain gardens are usually more affordable for Klausing’s current clients and help the property manager address existing drainage issues or compliance issues with stormwater management. “A rain garden fits much better into existing landscapes because it’s not as intensive,” Stever says. “They also can help mitigate problems that the location is already having.”

Another green infrastructure element that has been requested by Klausing’s customers are prairies. Some property managers are starting to look at installing prairies in order to replace turf, reduce maintenance costs and improve the environment.

“The green infrastructure on our site has helped spur the conversation about prairie installations,” Stever says. “It allows for the conversation to begin about what the possibilities are. For example, if a green roof isn’t a possibility, then maybe a rain garden is. We want the discussion to be about landscapes that do more.

A group of members from the National Association of Landscape Professionals tour The Klausing Group’s Lexington facility and check out the green roof above the front entrance.

“We were lucky to be able to participate in a grant program to help us with all of these projects,” says Stever. “It’s about reaching out to the community to let people know what’s possible, and also to reach out to other professionals.”

The results speak for themselves

Landscape company properties can make a difference and serve as an example within their communities. Within the last three years since the completion of the projects, Klausing’s Lexington facility has had more than 500 people visit and tour their property, including the Kentucky Chapter of the Green Building Council, various student groups, master gardeners and the National Association of Landscape Professionals.

The employee parking lot at The Klausing Group is made from permeable pavers.

The Klausing Group welcomes anyone and everyone to visit their property.

Stever says some visitors come to learn about the difficulties that were experienced during the construction process, how each project was constructed and what the details are to make it successful. Others want to know more about the aesthetics or the habitat of the projects. Some want more information about how Klausing’s property has become certified as a monarch way station.

The Klausing Group’s green roof had to be retrofitted for their facility’s front entrance.

Use your own landscape property to continuously serve as an example and inspiration for customers and get the conversations started.