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Arbor Intern Grows Through Experiencing Daily Challenges and Obstacles!

This is a guest post, written by Matt, about his intern experience with us this summer.

Interning with Yellowstone Landscape’s Arbor Division in Southwest Houston has been a rewarding experience, showing me what to expect from my future career, and realizing I made a great choice in studying Urban Forestry at Stephen F. Austin State University.  Arboriculture has always been an interest of mine and this internship has only piqued and focused this interest into what may be a lifelong endeavor.

As an Intern at Yellowstone Landscape, I have worked in the heat hauling brush and using a chipper, climbed trees and trimmed them with a chainsaw, excavated trenches and installed root barriers, pruned with an extended chainsaw, and stacked giant logs moved by a crane.  I’ve also gathered valuable experience in the sales sector; from shadowing my Mentors, to bidding my own jobs and managing and supervising crews.  Bidding jobs has boosted my confidence by meeting with clients in a professional environment.  My Mentors have provided supportive guidance and instruction while also giving me the freedom to use my intellect and make important decisions.

One of my favorite experiences was the removal of a large ash tree in a client’s front yard.  It was a huge tree with two main branches, each the size of large tree. One of the branches was leaning over the house and had the potential to cause tremendous damage if it fell.  A few years prior the tree was bolted at the base and cabled throughout the crown to keep it standing.  A recent storm caused some splitting of the base and the bolt was visible where it wasn’t before, so the homeowner decided it was time to have the tree removed.  We started around 7:30 AM and it took until 4 PM to finish.  I helped with hauling limbs to the chipper and stacking logs to be picked up later that day.  It was hot and humid, and our climber was pushing to finish in one day.  Late in the morning a section of limb became wedged between him and the tree while he was roping it down. This was a little scary, but he managed to get around it and drop it the way he intended. We could tell he had become fatigued and it was time for a break.  After lunch he went right back to the removal and worked with even more gumption than he had earlier in the day.  Once he had the tree down to a snag, the foreman decided to saw it and let it fall in the yard. When the snag dropped, it split in two showing that it was completely hollow in the middle.  Had this tree not been bolted and cabled, it would have failed long ago.  

It was interesting to see that the past work of an arborist kept a tree standing that wouldn’t be otherwise, and that over time, even with these mitigation techniques, the tree became dangerous as it decayed.  Best takeaway; a questionable tree and the installed hardware should be inspected regularly.

This was the most challenging job I’ve seen a single climber do, and he did it very well. He was tied in climbing around and using a chainsaw from 7:30 to 3:00 with only one brief break.  I have a lot of respect for these climbers, and having done a little climbing myself, I know that they are in much better shape than I am.  It is a difficult and dangerous job that takes a tremendous amount of effort and skill to perform. 

Being an Intern with Yellowstone Landscape’s Arbor Division has provided me the opportunity to learn many aspects of arboriculture.  My interest in this field has increased significantly and I have confidence that I will be successful in the future.  Yellowstone Landscape is a wonderful company to Intern with, and I highly recommend it to students for future work experience!

 

 

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Central Houston Landscape Management Intern Finds Her New Passion!

This is a guest post, written by Baylee, about her intern experience with us this summer.

As a horticulture student from Texas A&M University, I came into this internship knowing I wanted to work in landscaping, but had absolutely no idea of where I would fit into this well-oiled machine known as Yellowstone Landscape! Over the past two months, I have experienced a little of everything; management, maintenance, irrigation, enhancements.  Use of my new knowledge of these various areas will help me figure out exactly what I want to do after I graduate.

I’ve enjoyed working in all areas of the company, and ultimately, I’ve found a passion for irrigation and enhancements.  I love troubleshooting and solving the puzzles that go into designing and running a successful irrigation system.  After spending a day with our irrigation Account Manager in the Houston Central Branch and observing him work on a backflow system, I was hooked!  I plan to not only become a certified irrigator, but to earn my own backflow license.  I already knew I loved plants, but lately I’ve begun to appreciate the need for a functional irrigation system to keep them alive!

I’ve also learned, perhaps most importantly, how hard the crews work.  They are the very foundation of our industry and absolutely nothing could be done without them.  They’re extremely knowledgeable and have been nothing but willing to teach me what they know.  They work long hours to keep our clients happy and make sure their properties are always in tip-top shape.  Working with, speaking with, and making friends with these men has brought home just how fortunate I am and how many opportunities I’ve had.

I am so grateful for the opportunity to work at Yellowstone Landscape this summer and learn real, practical skills that I can build my career on.  Thank you for everything, Yellowstone Landscape!

 

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Charleston Intern Experiences the Value of Building Solid Relationships

This is a guest post, written by Alic, about his intern experience with us this summer.

I met Yellowstone Landscape in 2016 during the National Collegiate Landscape Competition at Mississippi State. This past spring, at the same competition I was approached by their recruiter, Lisa Hall, who remembered me from the previous year. This simple act stood out to me and after several conversations, I accepted an internship with Yellowstone Landscape for the summer of 2017. Approaching the internship, I had high anticipation for what Charleston, South Carolina had in store and it has not disappointed!

Throughout my career as a Kansas State student, I have taken many classes that pertain to the landscape industry. I have gained experience through those classes and other internships that have enhanced the value of my time here at Yellowstone Landscape. With previous experience in estimating, my Mentor and I structured my internship to focus mostly around that area of the landscape construction process.

My days are often spent in the office where I devote time looking through plans and discovering how they are built. Once the plan is reviewed it’s then time to do a take-off. Using a specialized program, I count the areas and estimate quantities of products like mulch, concrete, sod, pavers, etc. to ultimately determine the project cost. It is a lot like completing a puzzle where each piece has a price, including mark-ups and labor. If pieces are missed, the cost of the bid will not be precise, so accuracy is key.

When learning how these projects are put together, it’s easy to see how much information and detail are needed. Every day I learn something new. I have spent time in the field where knowing Spanish is an asset and contacted suppliers and clients where it is imperative to be patient and polite. I have also learned the value of time management and organization to meet key deadlines. These are just a few of the countless skills I have improved during my time at Yellowstone Landscape.

My time spent in Charleston is not limited to what I’ve experienced inside the office. I have also had the opportunity to network socially with the company at baseball games and dinners and observe how relationships are built within other areas of our industry.

Overall Charleston is a beautiful place and Yellowstone Landscape is an awesome company! I recommend this Internship experience to anyone considering the landscape industry as a career.

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Port St. Lucie Intern Falls in Love!

 

This is a guest post, written by Emily, about her intern experience with us this summer.

 

This summer I’ve had the pleasure of being an Intern at the Yellowstone Landscape, Port Saint Lucie Branch where I have been exposed to an entirely new world - the world of professional landscaping! Between mowing lawns, detailing palm trees, installing irrigation systems, and applying fertilizers and pesticides, I have gained an enormous amount of experience. These skills will be essential to my success in the future, as I’m certain this is the industry for me.

Before this summer, I had only been exposed to farming and small-scale horticultural practices, such as planting and harvesting fruits and vegetables, at my university’s gardens. As I went through each of the rotations of the internship, I experienced a different aspect of landscape maintenance, and I’ve fallen in love!

Every department has its own unique and essential role, and every crew member’s attention to detail and commitment to creating and maintaining premier properties impressed me to no end. In fact, I was incredibly impressed by every department I worked with, and I’m proud to say I believe that the relationships I have made this summer will last a lifetime.

This summer I learned a very valuable life lesson, “go with the flow” and it will work out. There were times throughout the summer that people wouldn’t show up or the weather would interfere with our plan for the day and the common approach was to stay calm and let things work out. This was a new concept to me, being a college student, when disaster strikes you, act! But in “the real world”, acting isn’t always the best option. Sometimes, the best course of action is to wait and let the situation work itself out. This lesson has proven to be invaluable to me not only in a professional setting, but in my every-day life. This summer has taught me more than how to operate a lawnmower and how to troubleshoot an irrigation clock; it has taught me how to be a more functional, professional, and go-with-the-flow adult with a tremendously useful skillset. I am grateful for my experiences with the crews and my Mentor and wouldn’t trade them for anything!

 

 

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Houston Construction Intern Applies Classroom Knowledge with Field Experience

This is a guest post, written by Blake, about his intern experience with us this summer.

 

Interning with the Houston Central Branch has been an experience unlike anything I expected.  As a Construction Intern, I was exposed to many new things and many different management styles.  Although I was assigned one Mentor, all four Project Managers stepped in to mentor me and make sure I got the most out of my internship.  Whether it be through shadowing, supervising crews, or helping manage projects.  I was exposed to everything that goes into project management and was able to apply what I am learning in school with those experiences, which is extremely valuable.

During my internship I experienced site analysis, plan take off’s, estimates, procurement and ordering, working on crews and managing crews.  I also participated in punch walks and pre-construction meetings, gaining an understanding of business language, client engagement and meeting topics which I found very valuable.

My favorite internship experience was a sustainability project at a landfill where we planted 60,000 grasses.  The process, known as Phytoremediation, uses various grasses and trees to clean pollutants and leachate water from the landfill so it can be recycled.  As part of this project, I attended client meetings and experienced behind the scenes discussions.  I also participated in the project start up, helped unload the 60,000 grasses, and saw the project through to the end.  Applying my knowledge of sustainability and water recycling from classroom studies in school was extremely valuable throughout this process.

Interning with Yellowstone Landscape has been a blessing and everything I could ask for in furthering my education in the landscape industry.  These lessons learned, as well as the importance of safety for all employees, and to be proactive rather than reactive, I will carry with me throughout my career.  I am forever grateful for my experience at Yellowstone Landscape and for the many opportunities provided by the managers and mentors I am working with.

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Following in Many Footsteps at Yellowstone Landscape

This is a guest post, written by Melanie, about her recent intern experience with us.

As an intern at the Orlando South Branch, I was exposed to the many landscape services provided by Yellowstone Landscape and obtained valuable skills that will aid me throughout my career. I worked with; irrigation, fert-chem, installation, detail, maintenance, and the mechanic, receiving valuable hands-on experience. I also gained experience and knowledge on the business side by working with the Business Development Manager, Landscape Designer, and Account Managers.

Through the internship program I designed, bid and installed a landscape enhancement for four homes on one of Yellowstone’s premier properties. By shadowing an Account Manager I was able to observe the approach taken when they begin managing a new property. I participated in a walkthrough of the property and prepared a list of potential enhancements to renew and create a beautiful, functional landscape.

Through my internship with Yellowstone Landscape, I witnessed and experienced what makes this company successful; a commitment to building lasting relationships with their clients and their team. Yellowstone Landscape’s focus on communication and being proactive in addressing issues before they become a problem is truly impressive. I feel very fortunate to be given this internship opportunity and look forward to starting a new chapter with them as I move into a supervisory role at the Orlando South Branch.

Congratulations, Melanie!

 

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Sarasota Intern Understands the Value of Field Experience

This is a guest post, written by Shelby, about her intern experience with us this summer.

 

My internship with Yellowstone Landscape is my very first, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way! I knew after graduation from Southern Illinois University, I wanted to do an internship with a landscape company and gain hands on experience as opposed to only classroom work. I wanted to work in the field and experience all aspects of landscaping.

As an intern I am able to work with the Account Managers, mow and trim crews, irrigation and fert-pest departments, and even the mechanic! I have really enjoyed this rotational internship as it very important for me to learn about each aspect of the company.

It’s awesome that each intern has a project and I was able to do what I enjoy the most, design! I plan to go into design in the future and I have thoroughly reveled in my project. Another favorite part of my internship is working with the irrigation department. Before coming to Yellowstone Landscape I knew nothing about irrigation and after a week with the irrigation crew I gained a new skillset. Irrigation is a must to keep the most pleasing landscape attractive after it’s installed.

The greatest lesson I have learned is every aspect of the company is important and must work together as a team, like a well-oiled machine. Without the mow and trim crews the landscape would become over grown. The irrigation crews keep the lawns and shrubs properly watered when there are broken spray heads and rotors. Account Managers keep the lines of communication open between clients and crews. The fert-pest crew keep lawns and plant materials green, healthy and free of insects and disease. Every part of this company is crucial to its success and no job or position is of greater or lesser importance.

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Tampa Intern Is Grateful for the Lessons Learned

This is a guest post, written by Kennon, about his intern experience with us this summer.

My experience with Yellowstone Landscape in Tampa, Florida is one I will always remember. My previous experience is with residential landscapes, and to come to a company with an outstanding reputation that works on high-end communities has been a real blessing. I have learned more these past few months than from any other experiences in the field.

To make a property look its absolute best you must manage all aspects of the landscape. The mow crews have a huge responsibility to make sure the property is free from weeds and trimmed perfectly. I have the utmost respect for every crew member as they work very hard and do an outstanding job.

Irrigation is the area I have learned the most from and working with the irrigation team has been a rewarding and educational experience. I had very little experience prior to coming to Yellowstone Landscape and have never worked with drip line irrigation. While working on my internship project I had to come up with a way to bring irrigation to four planters under a trellis/arbor, with cemented pavers that could not be removed. I was able to work with an irrigation tech to come up with the best solution. Also, during the installation of my project I lead the crews and irrigation team on where to install the plants and needed drip irrigation. My project was very rewarding and hit all the areas I have been working with.

I have learned skills that are not taught in college; respecting your crews and how to communicate professionally with Property Managers. Great communication skills are essential in this industry. I have learned new ways to keep track of what is going on during the day by placing notes in my phone under the “Notes” app. Managing multiple crews and properties and keeping under the budgeted labor hours is extremely challenging and requires great management skills.

Overall, I have had a wonderful experience that very few interns experience with other companies. I highly recommend Yellowstone Landscape and I am grateful to Yellowstone for this once in a lifetime opportunity.

 

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2016 Summer Interns Gallery

It was so great to have all our 2016 Interns at our Palm Coast headquarters.  This great group of interns enjoyed dinner on the beach, lots of team building activities, and got to hear firsthand from our leadership team what it takes to run one of the leading commercial landscaping companies in the country.

Great job this summer and best of luck to you all!

 

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Jacksonville Intern Learns Valuable Lessons Outside the Classroom!

This is a guest post, written by Matt, about his intern experience with us this summer.

Being chosen to participate in an internship at Yellowstone Landscape has taught me many lessons in the field of landscape management as well as provided me with skills that I will carry throughout of my lifetime. As an intern, I experienced every aspect of the company, from the Account Manager to the maintenance crew.

In the beginning, I worked with the irrigation technicians, learning how to change PGA and PEB valves on sprinkler heads as well as laying pipe for brand new irrigation lines. I then moved into the chemical and fertilization department, learning what chemicals to use on specific turf as well as plants. I collected and examined caterpillars that were infesting a group of Oak trees on a property which led us to treat with a chemical in order to eliminate the infestation. I also learned how to Arbor Jet trees and shoot chemicals directly into the vascular system of an Italian Cypress, something I never knew was possible.

The remainder of my time as been spent with the maintenance crew. Experiencing this aspect of landscape maintenance has been an essential part of the internship. I have learned how to use a 60 inch zero turn mower and was given the opportunity to mow multiple areas and fully understand how to operate it. I have also gained experience using an edger, blower and weed eater. These tools are the backbone in the lawn care industry and gaining experience with them is priceless. Being in the field tested many of my skills. I learned to prepare for the heat, work safely and work hard all which are important for anyone considering this industry to understand.

While observing my Mentor working with customers one on one, I learned the importance of communicating with a customer, understanding what they want, and turning it into actual work in the field. It showed me how hard work pays off! I would say this is the most valuable thing I have learned during my Internship. I recommend anyone considering an internship in this industry should experience as much as possible in order to gain fully what this industry has to offer.

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PO Box 849

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877.785.6685

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