Landscaping in the 21st century

What fell under the umbrella of landscaping when I was thus employed as a college student was working with the earth, planting things, getting your hands dirty. Tools were a shovel, rake, hedge clippers, pruning shears, and broom. Today, however, working with nature seems to have evolved into harnessing power to control it and even beat it back.

Today, clippers and brooms have been replaced by motorized gear. Now it’s as many motors running as a crew of three or four guys can sustain.

Leaf blowers? No such thing, really. They blow everything, everywhere, with a resulting cloud of dust that can be spotted for half-a-mile. What’s wrong with hand raking, anyway? It’s good exercise; cardiologists even recommend it.

All this equipment doesn’t necessarily make a positive difference on the completed project even though the customer is being charged an arm and a leg for these services and equipment. Besides seeing crews fill the air with dust clouds, I’ve seen them use weed whackers to trim shrubs. This tears – damages – the tissue of each branch and leaf. The shrub might look good now, but in the long run it will be more susceptible to disease and dehydration.

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