What does a landscaper do?
Landscapers set up and maintain many outdoor elements such as grass, plants, flowers, and other elements of landscaped areas. They mow, trim, edge, detach, fertilize, water, and mulch lawns and other elements throughout the growing seasons. They often smooth and create inclines or hills, build walkways, patios, fountains, terraces, and decks, and set up sprinkler systems and lighting elements. Landscapers also bring in and plant new vegetation and move, fertilize, mulch, and water existing trees, shrubs, and plants. They also use a variety of tools such as rakes, shovels, hedge trimmers, mowers, handsaws, axes, electric clippers, and chain saws. Some also use twin-axle vehicles and tractors to create outdoor environments.
What kind of training does a landscaper need?
Landscapers usually learn their skills on the job, but many employers prefer applicants who complete formal training in horticulture, landscape design, and other related fields. Landscapers must learn how to operate and repair a variety of equipment and abide by the proper safety procedures. They must also learn maintenance and planting procedures. Landscapers who own their own business need formal training in business practices, landscape design, and horticulture. Most states require landscapers who apply pesticides to be licensed. Licensing requirements vary, but usually include passing an examination on the correct use and disposal of a variety of pesticides.
What are the prospects for a career as a landscaper?
Employment of landscapers is projected to grow faster than average for all professions, increasing 18% from 2006 to 2016 (1). The increasing demand of lawn care, growth of landscaping companies, and increased construction of many different areas that require landscaping services will drive job growth.
Job prospects are expected to be very good because the number of job openings exceed the number of applicants. The best opportunities will be regions with temperate climates, where landscaping services are needed year round.
How much do landscapers make?
As of October 2009, landscapers with 1 to 4 years experience earn average annual salaries between $18,500 and $33,500. Those with 5 to 9 years experience earn average annual salaries between $25,697 and $44,219 (2).
A career as a landscaper is a great choice for people interested in the landscaping field and maintaining lawns and other outside scenery. Landscapers must be self-motivated, responsible, determined, and quick learners. They must be able to follow directions accurately to ensure time is not wasted and plans and vegetation is not damaged. They must be able to effectively work independently and as part of a team. Landscapers must also have excellent communication skills because they often work directly with many different customers.