Blog

World War I Memorial

Chapel Valley began work on this project in the Spring of 2020 with completion in April of 2021.  The overall management of the project was very intense and complex due to many different factors.  Chapel Valley’s Senior Project Manager and Field Manager worked closely with out-of-state Landscape Architects and Soil Scientists to sample every load of material brought onto the site. The day-to-day activities increased in intensity as COVID-19  struck the country and everyone had to become accustomed to the new and ever-changing safety protocols for working on site. Additionally, frequently occurring political demonstrations and the presidential election of 2020 required complex logistical planning and last-minute adaptations.  Despite the intricacy of the project, Chapel Valley completed the work on time with expectations exceeded. We are proud and honored to be a part of a project that honors and celebrates those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.

Learn more about the project at the official project website.

Photo: World War One Centennial Commission

The Advantages of Working with a Family-Owned Business

Does your Landscape Contractor provide the level of service you expect, or do you feel as though you are being “managed” for the benefit/profitability of a large corporation?   You have a lot of choices in Landscape Providers and they are all not created equal.  Yes, we all mow grass, prune shrubs, and apply mulch but is your Contractor invested in your property for the long term?  Cheap contract prices and the necessity to post corporate profits that will appease stockholders often leads to short-cuts and deferred maintenance items that will be an out of contract extra cost later down the road.  Chapel Valley is invested in the Community, committed to our employees and we hold ourselves accountable to our Customers to fulfill our contractual obligations completely and avoid the unnecessary and unexpected costs to rectify service items that should have been done in contract all along.

Chapel Valley has been in business since 1968 and for over 50 years we have remained a family-owned business.  While our Founder, Landon Reeve, passed away last year his legacy is being carried on by his son James who shares the same ethos and beliefs of always doing the right thing for each and every customer and employee even if it might cost the company money and sacrifice some immediate profits.   At our core, we operate by the Golden Rule and this is what has driven our success and our profitability.  Treat people like you would want them to treat you, do what is right and profits will naturally flow.

Family Owned Businesses, like Chapel Valley, enjoy the flexibility to implement new ideas immediately and adapt to changing situations that may be needed with either our employees or customers.  As we have all seen with COVID-19, the secret to success and reducing the spread was a quick and immediate response.

When selecting your next Landscape Provider ask yourself, do corporate profits drive the level of service you will receive?  Chapel Valley is driven by its dedication to Family Values that infiltrate every aspect of the Work Culture.  We do what we say we are going to do and we do it well.  We may make mistakes but we will own them and take the steps necessary to resolve the trouble.  You have our word on that.

Operational Excellence

Finding a landscaping vendor that has every cylinder firing is getting more difficult to obtain these days. With so many more contractors to choose from now than ever before, there is a higher possibility of choosing the wrong one. Every now and again you will find a vendor that seems to be performing at the top of their level. Those are the ones you will do anything to keep. Throughout my career, I have noticed most of these top performers have one major thing in common: operational excellence.

Is the vendor professional in the most basic forms? As in, do they have a clean, presentable service vehicle and uniform? Something so simple, almost petty, is extremely important. If your landscaper pulls up to your job site every week in a dirty, unmarked vehicle with no formal uniform, how can you safely determine if those are the people you think they are? Not only does it not look professional, not knowing who or what those workers belong to could intimidate some of your residents or tenants. Your renters have better things to focus on. Do not allow your vendor to draw negative attention to themselves, because eventually, it will become a reflection on you.

Organization is key with any successful vendor. Let us start with scheduling. Does the contractor show up as agreed upon in the contract, consistently at the same intervals for each service? Or do they seem to be showing up when they can and having to perform make up services or “IOU” favors for lack of consistent service? A lot of this erratic behavior is stemmed from a poor organization or structure at their company. A great vendor will have a consistent schedule for the season, always having the correct equipment and people to perform the job. Of course, there will be times where something will go wrong even with a “perfect” vendor. Maybe a few folks called in sick or they had a breakdown on the highway which caused them to stray off schedule. What makes them a great vendor is that they let you know, and they communicated that to you and let you know the new plan. That brings me to the next point: communication.

Do you hear from your vendor once a month, once a quarter, or every week? Depending on the type of work performed and how often they are contractually required to visit your property, you may need to hear from one vendor more than another. Are they being proactive in communicating: schedule changes, pricing for enhancements, hazardous items, general cost-saving measures, or general notes of the property each week? Or are you having to reach out to them for every item? A well-oiled contractor will always have their communication down and you will know their every move.

These points discussed are some of the common trends or habits I have noticed that can separate a great vendor from a poor one. A vendor with operational excellence will be your eyes and ears for your property and will be a true partner. One should desire a company that makes your life easier, not harder. Make sure you choose one that fits your mold and takes your property to the next level with excellent operational fluidity. You won’t regret it.

Mike Bauer
Chapel Valley Landscape Company

What Your Landscape Upkeep Says About Your Company

Perception matters, from the moment a potential client clicks on your website to the first time they walk into your building. The landscape that surrounds your business sets the tone for what they can expect from your business. A stellar impression of your company results in economic advantages as well as peace of mind for everyone interacting with your business. We’ve compiled a list of the many benefits of a strategically planned landscape: Read more »

5 Ways to Prep Winter Landscaping

If you own any type of property, residential or commercial, it’s time to face some bad news: It’s already time to start thinking about preparing your outdoor landscape for winter.

That might seem premature, but cold temperatures, snow, and ice will be coming sooner than you think. It’s a lot easier to take the necessary steps now than it will be when you’re fighting early storms. Read more »

Designing A Custom Residential Landscape Lighting System

Every homeowner dreams of having their own custom lighting system to display the landscape they’ve put a lot of time and money into. However, deciding exactly what you want can be challenging. By learning more about how we design a custom residential landscape lighting system, you’ll learn how you can help our teams design the right outdoor landscape for you should be achievable in no time at all. Read more »

Plant Health Care Tips for the Warm Weeks Ahead

Intense sun and hotter air temperatures undoubtedly have an effect on plant health care. So, with the warmer months approaching faster than an outbreak of spring dandelions, we couldn’t help but want to share a few plant health care tips with all of our valued, Chapel Valley Landscaping Company’s customers in Maryland and Virginia. Let’s start with a look at one of residential and commercial landscaping’s most basic tasks, watering. Read more »