Field Report: Vermeer celebrates 60 years

It was around 1943 when Gary Vermeer created a mechanical hoist to ease the process of unloading his grain wagon during harvest. Five years later, he opened the doors of Vermeer Manufacturing Company in Pella, Iowa, on November 22, 1948. This year, the 2,000 employees of Vermeer Corporation celebrate its 60th anniversary with a commitment to being a leader in the green movement.

The company’s recycling efforts diverted more than 26 million pounds of material from the landfill in 2007.

Vermeer is best known in the landscape industry for their rubber tire and rubber track utility tractors, compact utility loaders, and their environmental line of brush chippers, tree spades, tub grinders, horizontal grinders and compost turners.
~ Glenn DiNella

Bernheim Arboretum brings Platinum LEED certification to Kentucky
“Imagine a building like a tree” was the concept for Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest’s sustainable visitor center in Clermont, Kentucky, which received a LEED Platinum certification for new construction in December 2007.

Susan Ritter, marketing and development director at Bernheim, says the idea for a green building began during Bernheim’s capital campaign in 2000. “We have a quarter of a million visitors annually,” she says. “We wanted to provide a greater opportunity for people to connect with nature.”

The center is the first building in Kentucky to gain a platinum designation, the highest designation offered by LEED. Buildings are rated on a point system, with 69 possible points available. To obtain a platinum award, a building must receive between 52 and 69 points. Bernheim held an unveiling event for the public earlier this year to celebrate the honor.
~ Jennifer Mitchell

Letter to editor

Dear Editor:

My name is Anna, and I am on your mailing list for Total Landscape Care. Things have not gone well lately. I live in Houston, and my yard and home, like most on my street, was destroyed. This, in itself, would not be a big deal if I had someone to help me take care of matters. I thought I could take care of it all, but as it turns out I can’t – can’t make go of anything. I am 67 years old, by myself, now on Social Security only. My front yard (a handkerchief) is a mess and I have gotten notices from the Association. To put it bluntly, I cannot financially, emotionally or physically take care of it. I am truly depressed looking at it. Not rich enough to have someone do it, not poor enough to be on welfare, and not enough in my old bones to make a go. Do you have someone who would volunteer to clean it and redo it in Houston? Please help me. I was told I needed to reach out, and sometimes, going without food is better than looking at a yard that reminds me everyday how poor, alone, and discouraged I am.
Anna Vassilian
Houston, Texas

* Editor’s note: If you can help this reader, please call Glenn DiNella at (205) 248-1053.

Outdoor power equipment industry brands integrate

Outdoor power equipment brands Husqvarna, Dixon, BlueBird and Yazoo/Kees will integrate to form one organization called Husqvarna Professional Products. President Dave Zertoss will lead the group. The company will continue to have separate dealer and distributor sales forces for each individual brand, but the leadership approach will be integrated.

Tygar launches online curbing directory
Tygar Manufacturing has launched an online directory to help home- owners and landscapers locate local curbing contractors at no cost. Site users simply enter a ZIP code to search for local contractors. The site can also search cities and states for the continental U.S. and Canada. The new Web site includes a gallery of curbing photos, a FAQ section, and a news and links page related to curbing. Visit

Vectorworks Landmark 2009 updates plant database
Nemetschek North America has partnered with Monrovia, an ornamental plant supplier. This partnership serves to enhance the Vectorworks Landmark 2009 plant database. The number of plants in the database is doubled, and geographic coverage of plants in regions like Florida and California has also improved. Vectorworks Landmark 2009 software users can download the free plant database at

Registration open for New England Grows 2009
New England Grows 2009 will be February 4-6 at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center in Boston, Massachusetts. To register, visit The new online tool, myGrows, allows show attendees to personalize their trips. Register by January 15 and admission is only $39.

DuPont product gets accelerated approval in California
Acelepryn, a DuPont insecticide, is now registered for use in California after an expedited review and approval process. The California Department of Pesticide Registrations began its review of Acelepryn before the EPA gave its registration. The insecticide is used to control all key turf-damaging white grub species and other pests like the black turfgrass ataenius and the black cutworm.

Dixie Chopper appoints new president and CEO
Gary A. Morgan has been appointed the new president and CEO of Magic Circle Corporation, the manufacturer of Dixie Chopper lawn mowers. The company’s first and only previous president, Art Evans, will remain chairman of the board of directors as well as concentrate his efforts on research and development.

The Attachments Idea Book
Landscapers use a variety of attachments for doing everything from snow removal to jobsite cleanup, and regardless of how often they are used, every landscaper has a favorite attachment.
Attachments Idea Book Cover