Landscaping is a hands-on job. You tend outdoor spaces in spring, summer, and fall, offer garden design services to a range of residential and commercial clients, and trim hedges and keep weeds in check all over town. Between butterfly borders and patio installation jobs, you’re busy three out of four seasons a year.
Winter might seem like an obvious off-season for landscaping services — but actually, there are lots of things you can do when the wind blows cold. In this article, we’ll explore a few projects you can still do between November and March. Got snow? Great; we’ll tell you how to work the white stuff to your advantage.
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Winter Projects For Landscaping Companies
Landscaping companies can still make money when it’s cold outside. Let’s look at a few winter projects you can do when the snow flies.
Year-Round Landscaping Services
Landscaping is impossible in winter, right? Actually — and especially if you offer a full-service garden redesign program — winter can be the ideal time to begin landscaping your clients’ yards. Here’s why:
- Perennial plants are dormant during fall and winter, making them easier to dig up and move to new areas.
- Winter is the ideal time to plant bare-root shrubs and trees.
- If you’re based in the frozen north, winter is a great time to prepare ground for new turf in spring.
- In temperate regions — for example, near the coast in central and southern California — you don’t have to worry about watering winter-laid turf.
- If your climate is cool but not ice cold, consider pouring concrete paths during cooler months.
- Darkness falls sooner, so you can test lighting options during working hours.
Winter landscaping services tend to kick up less dust, too, so clients’ houses stay cleaner. Drainage problems are also much easier to spot and sort out in cooler weather.
Winter Lawn Care Services
Your clients love their lawns in spring, summer, and fall. Grass goes dormant over winter in snow-covered states, but in mild climes, it simply stops growing. If you can see grass, you can provide lawn care services, including an application of winter fertilizer. Choose a slow-release product high in nitrogen, phosphate, and potassium, which will encourage root growth before spring shoots emerge.
Offer An Online Gardening Course
If you already have a website, offering an online gardening course can help you make bank over the colder months. Think about everything you’ve learned in your time as a gardener and put together a few top tips videos and helpful printables for people in your area. Arrange your videos and printables by season and use email marketing to promote your paid course to existing customers.
Extra Winter Landscaping Ideas
Landscaping services don’t have to stop in winter. Here are a few more jobs you can do when it’s cool:
- Pressure washing: Winter is a great time to pressure wash decks, paths, and siding.
- Gutter cleaning: Homeowners know they should clean their gutters, but most of them don’t really want to — which is where you come in.
- Leaf removal: Decaying leaves make lawns look unkempt, so break out your leaf blower and offer a leaf removal service.
- Holiday light installation: Everyone wants a pretty house, so why not install exterior Christmas lights for a small fee?
Pivot To Snow Removal Services
In the Upper Midwest or the northern states along the Eastern Seaboard or Pacific Coast, winter means one thing: snow — and lots of it. Mount Ranier in Washington gets more than 645 inches of snow per year, while Crater Lake in Oregon deals with more than 450 inches of snow between late fall and early spring.
Leaving mountains and ski resorts behind, valley people get dumped on, too. Up in the Lake Superior snow belt, folks get more than 70 inches of the white stuff every cold season, while people in Erie, Pennsylvania, dig themselves out of more than 105 inches per annum.
What does this mean for landscaping companies? A great snow removal business opportunity. You can’t stop snow falling — but you can remove it, and if you do an efficient job, you’ll gain customers galore.
You’ll need the following equipment to set yourself up as a snow removal expert:
- Several durable snow shovels
- A good supply of rock salt
- Ice melt in bulk
- At least one snow blower
- A backup snow blower
For snow removal jobs on rough terrain, in parking lots, or on gravel roads, consider adding a plow attachment to the front of your truck. Go for an all-steel plow and pick a wide blade to reduce the number of passes you need to make. Modern front-mount hitch plows are easier than ever to attach to your vehicle — and they’re simple to control.
Hot tip: Snow removal businesses are easy to scale up. If you find major success as a snow removal expert, you can buy another plow-ready truck — or even a small snow plow — and expand your company.
Finally, you’ll need to advertise your snow removal service. You can use your existing website to promote your new venture; you can also use paid ads, a newspaper announcement, or social media to let local folks know what you plan to offer.
Preparing For Winter: Final Thoughts
Many people consider winter the off-season for landscape companies. In fact, there are plenty of ways to stay busy, make money, and gain new customers no matter where you live. Hard landscaping projects work well in winter, and you can plant bare-root fruit trees and bushes in colder months. If you’re up in the frozen north, consider pivoting to a snow removal service, and use CraftJack to find new leads. With the right equipment and a little enthusiasm, you’ll do well all year round.