Landscapers spruce up Indy area lawns

Landscapers spruce up Indy area lawns

Maintain a healthy yard and landscape and avoid getting mowed over by scams with tips from these pros.

What types of landscaping does your company do?

Michael van de Bossche: We design and install hardscapes, softscapes, water features, stonework, drainage systems, decks, arbors, pergolas, gazebos, garden sheds and even tree houses. We also provide landscape maintenance.

Aaron Crowder: Most of our spring work is cleaning up the yard and beds and mulching. As we get through spring, we start focusing more on design and installation. We do lawn care, landscape design and installation, irrigation and lighting.

Rodney Benson: We do a full range of landscaping. We mow, fertilize, trim shrubs, mulch, install hardscapes and plants and do snow removal.

Who we spoke to

Earth-Wood Arts

Michael van de Bossche, owner


Circle City Outdoors

Aaron Crowder, operations manager


Franco Landscaping

Rodney Benson, maintenance division manager

Brownsburg, Ind.

What are the biggest issues in the spring and early summer for landscapes in Indy?

van de Bossche: In the spring, it’s cleanup, edging, mulching, planting, fertilizing, repairs and maintenance for hardscapes, decks and water features. In the summer, we do landscape construction, insect and disease treatments and install drainage and irrigation systems.

Crowder: Because the winter has been so harsh, homeowners might see bare spots that might need aeration or over-seeding such as where snow was compacted and sat for a long time. If hard freezes later in the season affect material already budded or leafed out, there’s nothing you can do about that.

Benson: We’re dealing with snow mold. It looks like a gray color in the grass. You have to rake it lightly and get it to stand up and dry out. Homeowners can clean up by edging, mulching and cutting down dead perennials so they can regrow.

What’s the cost for hiring someone to take care of your yard?

van de Bossche: This depends on the size of the property, but comprehensive maintenance should include much more than mulching, mowing, and trimming shrubs. Ornamental trees and shrubs should also be pruned properly. A competent, detail-oriented company will usually charge a per-man hour rate, and it’s going to be more expensive than a high school student or a handyman.

Crowder: Mowing and turf treatments like weed control are a $40 minimum, based on yard size. Spring cleanup starts at $500 for edging and mulching, but spending $700 to $1,200 is typical for a yard with beds in the front and back. Maintaining your property throughout the year will save you a considerable amount of money.

Benson: The minimum for cleanup is $165, which is three guys for an hour. Turf treatments cost a minimum $45. The mowing minimum is $35 per visit. Weed your beds and keep them clean to save money.

What scams do homeowners need to avoid when it comes to lawn care?

van de Bossche: The best way to avoid scams is to have a written contract for everything that requires payment and include every possible specification regarding materials, descriptions of how the work will be accomplished, and a projected completion date, allowing for weather delays.

Crowder: There’s so many landscape companies in Indy that from the customers’ end, it’s up to them to do their homework and decide what they want to do. With landscaping, you really do get what you pay for.

Benson: It’s price vs. quality when it comes to landscaping and lawn care.

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When edging a bed, dig a trench about 6 inches deep.  (Photo by Jo Ellen Meyers Sharp)
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