Serious droughts in several parts of the country have property owners more conscious of the role that native plant material plays in the design and development of landscape installations.
Native plants have over time been able to adjust and thrive in their local climates and soil conditions. Native plant material will then fare better on their own without two of the most expensive inputs owners use for landscape maintenance – water and fertilization. By having plant material which is easier and less expensive to maintain, well informed property owners will embrace native plant material offerings.
In developing your unique selling proposition in your business plan, you might want to consider a focus on specializing on native plant material. Native plant material can often take second place to more flamboyant plant material offered by wholesale growers. There are long term trends which will impact the landscape trade over the next couple of decades, which will see native plant material for each region continue to gain favor.
Many states now have restrictions on when you can apply fertilizers and what type of fertilizers you can apply. Many factors are driving why these restrictions are coming into play with protecting watershed areas a primary concern. As states increase these restrictions and property owners increase their knowledge of these concerns, using native plant material which will require fewer fertilizer inputs can improve your selling position versus your competitors.
Outdoor landscape water usage is under severe pressure because of droughts – especially the most recent drought conditions in California. Water thirsty plants which decorate our landscapes are now seen as irresponsible despite their charms. Having plant material which only requires occasional supplemental water will save your customers money and help differentiate your company.
Contact your local country extension offices, and university resources to get more information. Develop presentation materials and perhaps a page on your company’s website which highlight your company’s native plant offering.