Drought Impacting Indiana Landscapers
In Indiana, landscape contractors are reporting that the drought and heat are impacting their mowing and landscape installation business; but on the flip side, they are seeing increased demand for irrigation and plant maintenance.
According to David George, project manager for Carmel-based Engledow Group, the weather has reduced business. The company’s mowing hours have fallen 15 percent in the past three weeks. However, watering hours are up by 20 percent and continue to increase.
''We try to do holistic contracts so that even within the same contract we do more watering and less mowing,'' George said.
Spiffy Lawn Mowing & Landscaping, in Indianapolis, is mowing is at a fourth of the seasonal norm, said co-owner Scott Steepleton. His company is staying busy redesigning the landscaping of subdivision entrances.
''By the time we get them done, hopefully we'll get some rain, and we’ll be out on the mower,'' Steepleton said.
But even the maintenance and irrigation businesses could be threatened by water restrictions.
Indianapolis utility company Citizens Water is asking its customers to water their lawns no more than once a week. If the drought continues for about two more weeks, Citizens Water will consider implementing mandatory restrictions, Carey Lykins, president and CEO of Citizens Energy Group, said in a release.
In Marion County, Indianapolis Local employment in landscaping services has declined from 2007 to 2010, but saw a slight increase in 2011 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.