As many people are returning to normal, the question that lies ahead is “how have the recent changes brought about by COVID-19 impacted the future of the landscaping industry? This is something I’ve been wondering since the start of the outbreak. While the state of Alabama deemed that landscaping was an essential service (thank goodness for my business), I can’t help but wonder how things will change moving forward.
With much of the population literally dying of boredom, many people have turned to gardening and landscaping to pass the time and improve the curb appear of their property. This is something that was always a hobby of mine, and obviously something I have continued throughout the quarantine, however, my concern is that the landscaping industry will take a hit as more people realize that they are capable of maintaining their own properties and that they may in fact even enjoy doing so. I grew up passing time by working in the yard. The concept itself is almost second- nature to me. Growing up, it was always a family affair and it was something that we all bonded over. Many families have been exposed to this hobby while spending so much time at home the past few months. I am happy that they have found happiness in a hobby that I love, but I am concerned for those whose job it is to help others with their landscaping needs.
During this strange time, I have seen my neighbors planting new flowers in their front gardens and being more in tune with the overall health of their landscaping. Homeowners are watering their grass more, cutting the grass and edging, and planting new plants for the upcoming growing season. These tasks were often done by professional landscapers who were paid big bucks to do these jobs. With the excess time on their hands, many people are finding that these landscaping chores are actually far more doable than they ever imagined. So what does that mean for the big landscaping companies? Well in the short term, I anticipate that many people will continue to tend to their own landscaping needs and the need for these large landscaping professionals will diminish over the next few months. More and more people are slowly returning to work, and as their spare time dwindles, I anticipate that they will eventually find that they do not have the time or care to continue with their new found landscaping hobbies. In the industry as a whole, the professionals may suffer. However, this will only be short-term and they will find that their business will slowly return to what it used to be. This will clearly take time, especially since many people have been laid off or had their hours cut back significantly, and they are in no position to be spending extra money on landscaping chores they are capable of doing themselves. As time goes by and the economy flows, most homeowners will become more comfortable with paying the extra money for someone else to service their yard.