The Level Green Culture Blog

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

Lindsay Tewell grew up in Calvert County, Md. as a tomboy, exploring the woods and splashing in streams.

She actually liked mowing her parents' lawn. Nature hikes renew her.

So after a stint working as a waitress, it makes sense that she made her way to a career in landscaping.

“My favorite thing is to be outside,” says Lindsay, a supervisor at Level Green Landscaping.

Lindsay has been working in landscaping for about five years, mostly at small companies. She worked her way up, learning new skills, mastering more complicated equipment, taking on more responsibility.

The Level Green story starts like a lot of great stories — with an intriguing idea and a conversation over lunch.

In this case, lunch was at Red Lobster. But Bill Hardy and Doug Delano could have been eating peanut butter sandwiches in a truck and still come to the same conclusion: they should start a landscaping company together.

The two friends had worked together for years at a Maryland landscaping company. Doug started out as a laborer and truck driver and worked his way up to supervisor, project manager, area manager and branch manager.

Bill started as assistant supervisor and moved on to be a supervisor, account manager and branch manager.

When Doug decided to start his own business, he immediately thought of Bill as the perfect business partner.

From the beginning, the pair had strong values and high standards.

Weeds fear Juan Olivar.

Growing up in El Salvador, he tended crops on his dad's property, always on the lookout for weeds.

When he came to the United States in 1983, he picked produce in California, knowing the best onions, tomatoes and peppers came from weed-free beds. He must have pulled thousands of weeds.

And now, as operations manager at Level Green landscaping, weeds don’t stand a chance.

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.