Frequently Asked Questions

The Gardeners Guild

For general advice on what to consider if you are thinking about employing the services of a gardener, on a regular or one off basis, please follow the link to the CONSUMER ADVICE section of the gardeners guild website

http://www.thegardenersguild.co.uk/Consumer_Advice.html

Services

What do you specialise in?

     The year round managing & developing of gardens. Plant and pruning knowledge as well as garden design

What do you do in the winter?

     Winter is often as busy in the garden as the rest of the year, albeit a slower pace. Perfect time to do projects, planting, and all those jobs you don't get time to in the hectic season.

Do you do landscaping?

     Yes and no. I can offer Soft landscaping, which includes turfing/seeding, border creation etc. I do not offer hard landscaping like fencing, patios, large soil works, walls etc.

Do you do Tree Surgery?

     No, I leave that to the professionals! I can do small tree works but I can recommend people for those bigger works

Is it you who actually does the work?

     Yes. At present I work on my own so won't send anyone else in my place.

Visits and access

Will I know when you are coming?

     Communication of visits is really key for me and for you. Regular visits are normally on set days, however will change in the event of bad weather. I will always communicate this with you at the earliest opportunity.

When do you start on site?

     Generally between 7.30 and 8.30, though occasionally earlier in high temperatures. You are working with a professional who knows what he is doing, so you don't need to be up and about to tell me what to do!

Do I need to be at home?

     No, and often this is the case

Do you need a key?

     No, as long as I have full access to the garden. Toilet and hand washing facilities are appreciated but not necessary. I do charge for visits if I arrive and am unable to get access to the garden (ie locked gates)

What do you do in bad weather?

     I work in the rain as long as the work tasks are suitable. If weather is severe I may postpone or cancels visits, but this is entirely at my discretion.

Four legged friends

Do you like dogs?

     I love dogs.

Can the dog be in the garden while you are working?

     Yes absolutely, they can be great company. This is on the provison that they are well managed and not likely to bite the gardener. If I am using the dangerous machinery they will need to be indoors.

Do I have to clear mess before you come?

     Yes please, everytime. Most dog owners are responsible and I understand that sometimes we miss the odd little 'gift' left by our pets and that is fine. Not clearing up before I come makes it hazardous for me working in your garden as my clothing and equipment can come into contact with it. I reserve the right to leave site and charge full price for visits if dogs mess is present in large volumes where I am working

Charges

Can I get a quote?

     All quotes are put in detail and in writing every time.

Will you come and visit my garden?

     Yes, I don't generally quote for works without seeing them and you in person. Occasionally I ask for photographs of the garden prior to coming to visit

How do you charge?

     Most of my work is charged at a fixed price. One off works are always charged a fixed price. Day/half day rates are used when a more detailed level of service is required

How much do you charge?

     My charges are very competitive and offer excellent value for money. My charges are in line with professional gardeners who are running a business, so you will pay more than if you are looking for basic garden labour, or cash in hand

My last gardener only charged £15 per hour?

     Running an efficient, reliable gardening business comes with many expenses. The trade body The Gardeners Guild, recommend an expectation of a minimum of £20 per hour for a professional service. 

Garden Waste

Can you remove garden waste?

     Yes, but sadly not for clients requiring weekly or fortnightly visits. I am unable to remove fresh grass clippings.

What does it cost?

     There is no way around it, removing any form of waste is expensive. As a business, I am charged for waste disposal at recycling centres. I also have to charge for my time and fuel costs for driving to and from the recycling centre, and of course the queues! Waste removal is often charged as part of your quotation, or at approximately £10 per large builders sack removed.

What are the alternatives?

     Composting, bonfires (if appropriate), council green waste bins, you removing the waste yourself.

Payments

How do I pay?

     Payment is required 14 days from invoice, unless otherwise specified. Payment can be made in all the usual ways

What about a fixed price plan?

     Fixed price plans involve 12 monthly payments by standing order

What happens if I'm late paying?

 

     I understand that sometimes things happen and payments are late. Persistent late payments will cause me to suspend or stop your service until resolved

Licences, Insurance and Qualifications

Do you have public liability insurance?

     Yes to £5 million. Copies available on request

Are you licenced to remove waste?

     I am a registered waste carrier (lower tier) with the Environment Agency. I can remove green waste from your garden that I have produced. Copies available on request.

Are you licenced to apply chemicals?

     Yes I hold PA1 & PA6 Certificate in Pesticide Application. Whilst I can apply herbicides (weed killers) when necessary, I do not use any pesticides at all in my workings.

Do you have horticultural qualifications?

     Yes I hold

     RHS Level 2 Principles & Practices in Horticulture - Kingston Maurward College

     Diploma in Horticulture - East Lambrook Manor

     NVQ Level 2 in Environmental Conservation