Turf & Rec

Landscape Congress goes Jan. 12-14 in Toronto

January 3, 2010  By  Mike Jiggens

LANDSCAPE Ontario Congress, Canada’s largest
horticultural lawn and garden trade show, will be held for the 37th time Jan.
12-14 at the Toronto Congress Centre.

conference, which includes a three-day trade show concurrent with a series of
educational seminars, traditionally attracts more than 14,000 professionals
engaged in the trade.

traditional Tuesday-to-Thursday lineup of seminars will be ushered in by a
number of industry symposiums on Monday, some of which will be held across the
street at the Doubletree by Hilton Toronto Airport Hotel.


and topics


Jan. 12


“Selling the experience,” presented by Jim Paluch, JP Horizons, Painsville, OH.
The importance of developing relationships, creating positive experiences, and
building a client base that looks forward to spending money.


“Can municipal parks be sustainable?” presented by Belinda Gallagher, Royal
Botanical Gardens, Burlington, ON. How the ever increasing pressure for “green”
landscaping will force municipalities and landscapers to review current
practices, the importance of plant selection. educating concerned citizens, and
the pros and cons of hardscaping.


“A career that’s great for life,” presented by Jacki Hart, Consulting by Hart,
Bracebridge, ON. The reasons why businesses and careers get stuck in comfort
zones, making sustainable changes in business, employee management and
communication, and creating a balanced team.


“Sustainable landscape audits: your key to success in hard times,” presented by
Owen Dell, County Landscape and Design, Santa Barbara, CA. What an audit is
about, its benefits to clients and your business, key elements of a landscape
audit and how to use it effectively in marketing.


“Arboriculture tree myths and their contribution to the landscape,” presented
by Jeff McMann, Town of Markham, ON. A look at myths which negatively affect
your landscape, what trees need to survive in the landscape, and how to
properly plant and maintain trees.


“Plant diseases and disorders: keeping your plants out of the ER,” presented by
Ron Rossini, Master Gardeners of Ontario, London, ON. How to improve
environments for plants, identification of diseases and treatment of plant


“Develop a safety culture: the web is the way,” presented by Jay Murray, LandscapeSafety.com,
London, ON. Quantifying the costs of an untrained new employee vs. a trained
one, understanding the legal requirements on training, and how to use the web
as a powerful learning tool.


“Introduction to green roofs,” presented by Jennifer Sprout, Green Roofs for
Healthy Cities, Toronto, ON. The benefits and types of green roofs, information
about the City of Toronto bylaw, and challenges to the marketplace.


“Risks and rewards of change,” presented by Jim Paluch, JP Horizons,
Painsville, OH. How the greatest risks return the greatest rewards and change
can be a positive experience, the “cycle of change” and the greatest risks and
rewards associated with change, and a list of techniques for handling change.


“When are native plants not the answer?” presented by Belinda Gallagher, Royal
Botanical Gardens, Burlington, ON. Why native plants are becoming so popular,
what “native” actually means, circumstances where native plants shine, and the
answer to whether or not native plants are at risk of being overbred.


“Preparing your business for succession,” presented by Milan Popadich, BMO
Nesbitt Burns, Toronto, ON and Vince Charbonneau, Cole and Partners, Toronto,
ON. A look at succession options, how to prepare a business for sale, the worth
of a business, strategies for an effective sales process, and investment
strategies for proceeds of sale.


“Watershed-friendly landscaping,” presented by Owen Dell, County Landscape and
Design, Santa Barbara, CA. Keeping rainwater on site, how to have a positive
effect on both the watershed and your own projects by harvesting water,
installing eco-roofs, permeable paving and bioswales, and skills and resources
to improve your work, save money and create new opportunities for you and your


Jan. 13


“The leaders edge: join a peer group and grow your business,” presented by
Jeffrey Scott, Glen Gate Pool and Property, Trumbull, CT. How to increase
accountability for yourself and your business using a board of advisers, a
mastermind and a peer group, growing your business and profits using the group
process, avoiding common mistakes made by members and groups, setting up or
finding the perfect group, and getting personal benefits that go beyond the
dollars and sense.


“Incorporating successful naturalized landscapes and natural areas into your
projects and communities: Part 1,” presented by Jack Pizzo, Pizzo &
Associates, Leland, IL. Why restoration is important from an historical
perspective, why native plants are beneficial, where to establish the
naturalized landscapes and maintain them, and how to use them within a


“Five principles for cultivating a sense of place,” presented by Claire
Sawyers, The Scott Arboretum of Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA. Drawing
inspiration from nature for gardens, deriving beauty from function, using
humble and indigenous materials in gardens, marrying the house or building to
the garden or landscape, and involving the visitor in the garden.


“Estimating and bidding—“As good as it gets”—recovering overhead,” presented by
Charles Vander Kooi, Vander Kooi & Associates, Littleton, CO. How to
prepare a multiple overhead system, the difference between overhead recovery
and overhead allocation, and the fact overhead is recovered and not charged for.


• “Succession
planning,” a panel discussion moderated by Michelle Cisecki, RBC Wealth
Management. A look at whether or not your organizational structure fits your
goals, what your business is worth, what happens if there is an unexpected
tragedy, a consideration of exit options, planning done in relation to the
transition of your business, and what retirement looks like.


“Landscape weed control: “more bite to bark,” presented by Dr. Hannah Mathers,
Ohio State University, Columbus, OH. What adds more “bite to bark” and what is
“all bark and no bite,” new research from the Vineland Research and Innovation
Centre regarding bio-herbicides and bio-herbicide-treated mulch, and
alternative weed control practices with application in nursery and landscape
weed control.


“Erosion control: new choices and alternatives,” presented by Cathy Wall,
Quality Seeds Ltd., Woodbridge, ON and Stephen R. Zwilling, Profile Products
LLC, Buffalo Grove, IL. How to match product characteristics with performance
and how site requirements attribute to both.


“The importance of balanced nutrition,” presented by Joe Uyenaka, Cargill,
Barrie, ON. How balanced nutrition works, the importance of taking a complete
soil analysis, and how nutrition affects pest problems in plants.


“Five-star customer service: the key to high-profit growth,” presented by
Jeffrey Scott, Glen Glate Pool and Property, Trumbull, CT. Coaching employees
and creating a living, breathing company culture which is focused on the
customer experience, creating processes to “wow” customers, and implementing
processes for identifying recovering from service failures.


“Incorporating successful naturalized landscapes and natural areas into your
projects and communities: Part 2,” presented by Jack Pizzo, Pizzo
& Associates, Leland, IL. A review of case studies and participation in an
interactive planning session.


“Gardens that reflect their place,” presented by Claire Sawyers, The Scott
Arboretum of Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA. Design principles outlined in
the “Five principles for cultivating a sense of place” session and how they
have contributed to the success and unique character the gardens exhibit.


“Six things contractors always ask,” presented by Charles Vander Kooi, Vander
Kooi & Associates, Littleton, CO. How a company should be organized, how
much growth is good, and how one should deal with equipment.


“Idea exchange: application of five-star customer service concept,” presented
by Jeffrey Scott, Glen Gate Pool and Property, Trumbull, CT. Gaining better clarity
on how to execute five-star customer service, having a new perspective on how
others will apply this concept, and making friends with like-minded peers in
your industry.


Jan. 14


“Social media as a marketing tool,” presented by Roy Prevost, Oakray Marketing
Services, Burnaby, BC. The use of Facebook and other web applications as useful


“Creating an operating budget,” presented by Mark Bradley, The Beach Gardener,
Brooklin, ON. The purpose of an operating budget and how it relates to the
landscape industry, appraising the value of budgeting in supporting growth and
prosperity, how budgets can improve decision making, and the major components
of a budget and how they inform the business owner.


“Practical eco-solutions for sustainable landscaping,” presented by Sean James,
Fern Ridge Landscaping, Milton, ON. The use of native plants, habitat creation,
rain water handling, permeable surfaces, alternatives to turf, and invasive
species use and control.


“Networking: a key marketing strategy,” presented by Roy Prevost, Oakray
Marketing Services, Burnaby, BC. The art of crafting a powerful “elevator”
speech, the fun of standing the telling the world, the do’s and don’ts of
networking, and how to use business cards.


“Media relations 101,” presented by Stephen Murdoch, OEB Enterprise, St.
Catharines, ON. How to present information in a way which is easy for the media
to use, how to break through the media clutter and how to be a valuable
interview subject.


  “Green infrastructure: what’s in it for us?”
presented by Steven Peck, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities, Toronto, ON. New
developments in the green roof industry, public policies such as the Toronto
green roof bylaw, the benefits of green infrastructure, and how to advance the
green infrastructure industry through Green Infrastructure Ontario.


“Operating a successful landscape company,” presented by Mark Bradley, The
Beach Gardener, Brooklin, ON. Realizing the value of implementing structured
procedures and systems within businesses, developing practical knowledge of how
The Beach Gardener uses estimating and budgeting systems to manage and support
growth and prosperity, identifying and consistently selling the right work for
a company, and formulating appropriate labour, equipment and technology
management strategies.

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