How to find a gardener

Finding a professional company offering gardening services in your local area has become a lot easier since the rise in popularity of the internet. A quick search of google with a few chosen keywords will bring up a multitude of results, some relevant, others not so relevant. However, the old fashioned ways of finding someone to care for your garden are still as valid as they ever were. Some of these might be
  • personal recommendation from family, friends or local business owners
  • observing a gardener working in your local area and contacting them
  • keeping an attractive flyer that was posted through your door
  • looking through the yellow pages
  • perusing adverts in local papers, directories and parish magazines
In our experience the best of these by far are the first two. Recommendations from people you know can usually be trusted but don't forget to judge the person who is giving you the advice as well before rushing in to making a decision. Getting recommendations from respectable local business owners can be an excellent way of finding a professional gardener for the sole reason that it makes good business sense for them to endorse other reputable companies because the quality of their advice reflects on their own enterprise. 

Observing someone working in your area is a good way of assessing a gardeners work. Make sure you get their details before they leave if they have no sign writing on their vehicle as they may not be back in the area for weeks at a time. Most reputable companies will have a business card or other literature that you can take away with you. Also, a tidy vehicle which is attractively sign written can instill confidence as they are proud to advertise their name and reputation to all that take an interest.

Gardening is a messy business and so people working in this profession can be dirty especially at the end of a long rainy day. Despite this you can usually get a valid impression of the way they run their business just by looking and talking to them. Tidy work clothes can portray a good image, unlike ripped jeans and jumpers with holes in ! Talking to prospective gardeners is a reliable way of helping you come to a decision on whether to hire them or not. Things we would be looking for are friendliness, politeness, confidence, willingness to converse, good grasp of the English language and interest in their chosen profession.

If you still cannot find a suitable gardener by these methods then the internet can bring results. Things we would try would be
  • a google places search
  • google search with suitable keywords and a location, for example Tadcaster, Selby, Sherburn in Elmet.
  • search gardening networks such as www.landscapejuicenetwork.com
  • look at the business directories and review sites
  • specific search for a gardener you have heard of, for example www.ecogardenmaintenance.co.uk
When searching for a service provider on the internet it is essential to chose your search terms wisely. You could use various search terms to find a find a gardener such as gardener York,  gardening services Selby, garden maintenance Tadcaster, landscape gardener Leeds etc. Adding a location is important as a company from thirty miles away probably wont be interested in doing a couple of hours of work when there is so much travelling involved. Keeping things local helps the local economy, is good for the environment and keeps costs down.

Some gardeners have a website and others don't. Although anyone can have a website, they do give you an idea of what the company is all about and will probably show examples of their work and give an impression of how passionate they are about their chosen profession. Networks such as the Landscape Juice Network are well worth having a look at as they contain masses of information about gardeners, landscapers and garden designers some of whom may be local to you.

Looking for trades people can be a process fraught with danger and unfortunately the gardening industry has it's fair share of rogues. Using the advice above will go a long way to help minimise this risk and hopefully you will find a reliable, knowledgeable and trustworthy gardener who you can rely on for years to come.