The Life of a Plantscaping Technician

Plantscaping technician dutiesRegardless of the beauty and artistry of a commercial plant installation, ultimately, it is the plantscaping technician who coaxes it to reach its full potential.  The typical plant care service contract includes a series of regular visits by a professionally-trained, uniformed member of the plantscaping team. It is the technician's job to keep plantings alive, healthy and attractive, while not overgrowing the space.

Your plantscaping tech inspects each plant for general appearance, dust or damage, moisture, growth pattern, color, disease or infestation, and overall vitality. While some plant service tasks are routine, the plantscaping tech is often required to become a horticultural detective. This entails observing and "listening" to the plant. Conditions in most commercial facilities are not always optimal. Even with the best of maintenance programs, things can happen: someone watered the plants between visits, excess coffee is poured into a pot or someone sat on a planter. Oops!

Plantscaping techs keep plants tidy and watered

Plantscaping technicians make certain that plants are clean. This is not only for aesthetics reasons. Dust on plants can clog leaf pores, adversely affecting leaf function and inviting insect pests. Techs may also wipe down planters, empty or clean pot liners, and remove trash and leaf debris. The moss liner might need to be freshened or fluffed. Depending on the preference of the tech, dusting a plant might require a duster, a damp cloth or a light water spray.

Plantscaping technicians routinely check the soil moisture of each plant either using a finger, a soil probe, or a moisture meter. Watering may require a watering can or portable tank and the use of a hose bib, restroom, or service area sink. While watering, technicians make sure that the pot or planter is draining properly and that the plants are properly positioned. If an irrigation system is used, the tech will check that all devices and lines are operational.

Grooming and health checks are essential

Interior plants in low-light conditions grow slowly, but they still require maintenance pruning. During a visit, the tech will pinch or prune indoor foliage to encourage plant stem branching and fullness. The technician will groom the plant by removing brown or yellow leaves and trimming brown leaf edges and tips. The more time-intensive dusting and grooming tasks are often performed on an alternating rotation.

The weekly or bi-weekly plantscaping visit includes an inspection for insect pests and disease. Even with good sanitation techniques, infestations can hitch along from the plant grower, in the air, or contracted from other plants in the facility. Early detection and non-chemical methods of control are preferred. Interior plantscaping companies such as the Inside Out Services Interiorscaping division avoid spraying chemicals indoors. The plant tech may wipe, wash or spray with water or cut away the affected plant parts. If an entire plant is affected, it will be removed and replaced. The most common insect pests in the interior landscape are aphids, mites, mealy bugs, scale, and fungus gnats.

Well-fed plants are happy plants!

An interior plantscaping tech feeds plants with fertilizer in order to replenish nutrients lost from exhausted soil. This is necessary for growth, color, and proper maintenance. Due to the unique environment of the flower pot or planting bed, salts and minerals can collect and adversely affect plant health. Occasionally, plant techs flush pots with water or apply a top dressing to planters to alleviate this.

At first blush, it may seem like there’s not much involved with maintaining an interiorscaping installation. In fact, some facilities managers and business owners may even be tempted to go the do-it-yourself (DIY) route. Hopefully, once the details of an interiorscaping maintenance program and expertise required are clear; the most sensible – and affordable – choice is to hire a pro! Please use the convenient quote form on our Interiorscaping Services page to request a free, no-obligation quote for your facility.

 
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