About Us ...
Steve (the boss man), done his fist paid gardening job way back in 1975, cutting grass for a pensioner and tending to the roses and just keeping the garden tidy. He dabbled in and out of several trades before settling down in the gardening trade after being taken on by a large landscaping company as an improver - to learn the trade proper.
His learning ability soared and in no time at all became a foreman at the same company.
He moved on as a Landscape Manager for a Forestry business near Basildon, Essex, followed by several managerial positions in large Companies distributed throughout London.
He paid for himself for a Diploma course in gardening, obtained teaching and certification in the use of Herbicides and Pesticides and numerous other horticulturally related qualifications as he went along.
He went into partnership in the late 80's for several years and undertook much of the Landscaping to the Surrey Docks area of London, headed up by the then LDDC (The London Docklands Development Corporation). It was around this time that he was also successful in obtaining grounds maintenance contracts with over 12 assorted housing associations, 3 power stations, and numerous commercial sites.
Landscaping works also were being taken on around this time. New Housing Estates, Schools, Playing Fields and the larger commercial sites were being completed.
The occassional local residents 'normal' garden undertaking grounds maintenance or Landscaping work was also being done all throughout this period.
By now, Steve had managed to purchase all the tools and gather the manpower he needed to undertake all manner of work from the start-from-scratch landscaping job - to cutting a pensioners grass. No matter that he now had the know-how and years of work experience under his belt, he never lost sight of the peoples needs. he once said "...I just give them what they want, and then a little bit extra" - this almost had become his catchphrase in business.
His trading names had naturally changed over the years, but everyone always knew him by his name.
When the building boom hit it's all time low in the mid 90's work suffered on the larger commercial sites and he reduced the size of the business down to just a few workers and himself. This same sized business continues today and his name is now a part of his trading name - as people knew him - 'Steve Barnett Horticultural' was born.
Although he still had the chance to grow again with the building boom, he declined the larger Landscaping work but accepted the Grounds Maintenance. His work for the smaller domestic garden gave him much more pleasure, as he was dealing with 'People' - and not 'Robots' he said. - He still has the same view today.
Keeping his overheads / costs to a minimum has allowed him to be more than competitive when it comes to quotations for Landscaping works, and, despite pressure from the larger organisations, has managed to secure himself in the domestic garden area, dealing with 'People', giving free advice, free consultations, free design service and is one of the most helpful and most genuine people I have ever had the chance to work with. - The Man !
Ray Thompson - (Friend and Employee for 24 years)