ELM’s Field Manager Chris Smith Makes the Case for Greener Landscapes

Darien, Connecticut-native Chris Smith said he feels like he was born into the green industry. As one of ELM’s Field Mangers, Chris gets to do what he says he loves most—working with customers and with skilled project teams who engineer and maintain commercial landscapes throughout the Fairfield and Westchester County areas ELM serves.

“We’re excited to have Chris on our operations team,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., ELM’s vice president of operations. “Our company is growing and he contributes a wealth of knowledge and passion to the work we do and to our mission to be the legacy landscape services company of choice.”

Chris has experience both on the front lines and at the technical level, and holds a Pesticide Applicator’s License from the State of Connecticut’s Department of Energy & Environmental Protection. Prior to joining ELM, Chris served with the Darien Board of Education’s grounds crew.

Chris’ affinity for sustainable approaches supports ELM’s own competitive stance on green practices as a competitive differentiator. According to Chris, commercial building owners and managers that invest in more energy-efficient landscapes and other key technologies, and correct potential issues as part of a longer-term performance and design plan, will see results in improved financial performance.

In his off-hours, Chris hikes, skis, and camps throughout the Northeast and uses that time to reflect on how he can deliver the beauty of nature to the properties and customers he serves.

Joe Claps Increases the Value of Commercial Properties Through Landscape Asset Enhancements

Eastern Land Management, an award-winning, full-service commercial landscape company located in Stamford, Connecticut, officially welcomes Joe Claps as enhancement field manager, effective January 2017.

Joe joins ELM with a background in business administration and finance, and six years’ experience in landscape sales, maintenance and construction.

Joe’s business training gives him a unique perspective on enhancing bottom line advantages for commercial property/facility managers and HOA boards looking to increase value. This includes high return on investment improvements such as masonry, walking trails and paths, turf-to-meadow conversions, plant rotations, structural elements, or modifications for water conservation.

Joe says he’s found that over the years, when multiple people are involved in decision-making, the more you can communicate the scope of work and the value it adds, the more likely the outcome is a win-win.

“Making the case for continuous landscape improvement requires an ability to think strategically. Joe understands how our customers’ landscapes are expected to conform to their brand and property image standards and he ties what we do to what our customers are focused on improving,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., vice president operations.

Old Greenwich, Connecticut born and raised, Joe considers himself an outdoorsman who believes in a prudent use of natural resources. His passion for sports, skiing and boating led him to landscaping where he discovered an equal passion for creating healthy outdoor environments that stand the test of time.

“We look forward to Joe being part of a team that is committed to the very best in customer service, quality work, and fresh thinking. He never ceases to impress us with his exceptional ability to support our customers with respect, trust, and sustainable solutions,” added Bruce.

George Brown Delivers as ELM’s New Area Manager

Eastern Land Management, an award-winning, full-service commercial landscape company located in Stamford, Connecticut, officially welcomes George P. Brown III to its team as area manager. George has seamlessly transitioned into the role, working closely with ELM’s senior management to build and maintain relationships and ensure that customer needs are promptly and expertly addressed.

George is an experienced landscape professional and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from State University of New York at Cobleskill with a major in landscape contracting.

“As ELM assessed our customers’ needs and growing four-season services portfolio, we recognized the importance of bringing on additional expertise in customer service to keep our communications flowing and services seamless,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., vice president, operations. “George’s addition to our team has elevated our ability to manage accounts and deliverables in a more efficient, streamlined process and we are thrilled to have him on the team.”

A New York native, George resides in Manhattan and is a lifelong outdoor sports enthusiast, finding plenty of opportunities on weekends to pursue his passion for cycling. George credits his appreciation for land stewardship from growing up on a farm, and to his parents who instilled a respect for nature and hearty work ethic early on.

George says that the most important piece of farm wisdom he shares with his customers is to think of their landscapes in the context of plant lifecycles, and to plan ahead and budget for seasonal impacts and long term expectations.

“We are fortunate to have George on board,” noted Bruce. He never ceases to impress us with his exceptional drive and the ability to support our customers with respect and trust.”

Charles Andrianus Widens ELM’s Competitive Edge

Eastern Land Management, an award-winning, full-service commercial landscape company located in Stamford, Connecticut, anchors its mission to one thing: trust. “No one is going to buy from a person they don’t trust” is ELM’s guiding principle.

Charles Andrianus, an ELM area manager since 2014, walks the trust talk and has become an expert in the number one rule of trust building: be yourself.

“Everybody has, at some time or another, had a bad experience by someone trying to sell them something,” says Charles. “I know our customers are impatient with spin and it’s important for me to show real integrity so our customers know I’ve got their best interests at heart.”

A Stamford native, Charles is a SUNY Maritime College and Texas A&M Maritime Academy-trained merchant marine, and student of marine transportation and logistics. He also holds a 3rd Mates License from the U.S. Coast Guard, which is helpful, he says, to keep the ship of good service sailing in the right direction.

“Charles’ background in complex problem solving makes him a natural troubleshooter,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., vice president, operations. “Coupled with his positive attitude and willingness to help, he can turn a regular customer experience into an amazing one.” Charles has been on a career trajectory and has sprinted from enhancement crew leader to landscape management field manager to area manager all within two years. In the fall of 2016, Charles obtained supervisory certification to engage in commercial use of pesticides from the State of Connecticut, a responsibility that comes with particular emphasis in health, safety and deployment.

In his free time, Charles cultivates a home garden that is abuzz with pollinators. He shares his love of exotic foliage, forage plants and annual color with ELM customers and offers them this one piece of advice: to appreciate their landscape as a vibrant ecosystem, with workhorse pollinators, food chain plants and soil microorganisms all playing a vital role in the health and importance of daily life.

“Charles’ contributions will help transform ELM for the future,” says Bruce Moore. “We’re pleased to have him on our team and welcome his ability to capitalize on emerging opportunities.”

Branch Manager Scott Distasio Delivers Continued Growth & Exceptional Service

Under the executive leadership of ELM Branch Manager, Scott Distasio, operational excellence and positive customer approval ratings are critical front-line touchpoints.

“Scott’s strong, relevant leadership improves the success of our whole organization,” said Bruce Moore, Jr., vice president, ELM operations. “He helps us align quality and systems, and leverages new technologies and ideas to keep our services and approaches fresh.”

Scott joined ELM in 2014, with progressive technical and management experience in all major landscape disciplines, including design-build, horticulture, tree care, and advanced snow/ice management.

A Connecticut native, Scott began his landscape career with a local garden center when he was in high school. After receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Landscape Development from the State University of New York at Cobleskill, Scott worked in landscape services industry for fifteen years prior to joining ELM in 2014. When not overseeing landscape projects and making service more meaningful for customers, Scott spends his off hours renovating his home and garden.

When asked what one piece of advice he would give customers, Scott said the secret to lasting landscape success and return on investment is multi-year planning. “It all boils down to understanding what’s affecting value and providing an actionable plan to deliver it,” he noted.

“Scott is ambidextrous,” said Bruce Moore. “He can manage the branch organization while simultaneously making sure that our customers are better off for having invested their money with us. We’re proud to have him on our team.”

Darien, Greenwich, New Canaan and Stamford Begin Twice-Weekly Watering May 1st

Local water agency and municipal officials have mandated that all outdoor watering with in-ground and above-ground landscape sprinklers will be restricted to two days a week, effective May 1. Drip irrigation, soaker hoses and hand-held watering will continue to be allowed.

Towns impacted by the water conservation ordinance are Darien, Greenwich, New Canaan and Stamford. Watering restrictions previously imposed on the town of Norwalk have been lifted.

ELM’s water conservation team recommends managing commercial landscapes for consistent water savings, reducing watering needs by strategic plant practices (mulching, soil amendments, hydrogels, and proactively managing moisture-stress symptoms), converting underutilized turf areas to meadows, and exploring alternative technologies for irrigating overall.

Aquarion Water Company customers with new lawns or plantings, or with large properties, may apply for a variance to the restrictions beginning May 1.

To file a variance for your property, learn more about how twice-weekly watering affects your property, or have a discussion with our irrigation specialists on water-saving practices for your landscape, please contact ELM Vice President, Operations, Bruce Moore, Jr. at 203-316-5433, bmoorejr@easternland.com.

Meet Bruce Moore, Jr.

“Create an environment for your people to grow, empower them to make decisions, recognize their achievements and the rest will fall into place.” Those are words of wisdom from ELM’s Vice President of Operations, Bruce Moore Jr. Recently, Bruce Jr. was featured in Landscape Management magazine’s Back Story. Read more and find out what inspired his passion for the business.