The Level Green Culture Blog

Behind the scenes and insider information for landscaping careers and green industry jobs.

When Margaret Hoffman's kids were in elementary school, their teachers told them their mom would make a great teacher.

A teacher? Hoffman laughed it off.

She was an urban forestry expert. A native plant lover. A landscape designer.

“I thought there was no way I had the patience to be a teacher,” she says.

Those grade school teachers were pretty smart.

These days, Hoffman is assistant professor of landscape contracting at Pennsylvania State University.

And she loves it.

Ashley Owens has kept in touch with the same potential landscaping client for eight years.

Year after year, he’s still happy with his current landscaping company. But one day, he might not be.

Then, she’ll pounce.

“It hasn’t turned into an opportunity yet, but the day his contractor slips up and makes him angry— I’ll be the one he calls,” says Ashley, business development manager with Level Green Landscaping.

“I just need a little crack in the door.”

On his first day at his new landscaping job, 18-year-old Paul Weaver gulped.

“They handed me the keys to a truck that was larger than anything I’d ever driven before and gave me a set of plans I didn’t know how to read,” he recalls. “My truck was full of Latinos who couldn’t speak English.

“I thought, ‘Do they think I'm somebody else?’”

He laughs.

“I muddled through, somehow, and made it.”

He made it all the way to a career as construction branch manager at Level Green Landscaping.

He must have done something right.

James Kole has been trying to take charge of landscaping projects since before he could read.

At age 4 or 5, he was visiting his grandmother as she rototilled her garden.

“I thought I was big enough to handle the rototiller myself, and the handle hit me, right under my eye,” he says.

It left a small scar under his left eye. But it didn’t dampen his enthusiasm.

James kept on gardening — all the way to his branch manager position at Level Green Landscaping. And a golden shovel. More about that later.

Not sure what the future holds for you after high school graduation?

If you love to be outside, like to work with your hands and are a good team player, landscaping might be a perfect fit.

Level Green Landscaping branch manager James Kole tells how a landscaping job straight out of high school can be the start of something big.

When Brad Butler was offered the job as Level Green Landscaping’s chief safety officer, he was sort of surprised.

”My hobbies are big wave surfing and skydiving, so I thought it was kind of odd they asked me to be in charge of safety,” he says.

Plus he has five kids, and a sixth due in August. And four giant Italian mastiff dogs, weighing in at about 200 lbs each.

When you think about it, if Brad’s managed to stay happy and healthy this long, he must know something.