The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Friday, 12 October 2007

Garden design is just the job for Ayrshire girl Rebecca

LIKE any self-respecting gardener, Rebecca Stephens can turn her hand to design. But unlike probably any other gardener, she actually has a degree in design - not of the gardening variety, but the corporate logo one.

[Picture shows: Rebecca Stephens.]

But the graduate in Applied Graphics Technology from Glasgow Caledonian University found herself in a Catch 22 situation when she started looking for work after graduating - she needed to demonstrate experience, but was not getting the opportunity to acquire any.

And so she turned her attention towards a long-held love of gardening, enrolling on a horticulture HNC course at a local college.

Since June she has been self-employed, offering year-round garden maintenance - from planning and planting to border and lawn care.

It helped that, as she was launching her business, she already had two clients on her books. Rebecca explains: “When I was at college, I acquired two clients - people who asked the college if there were any students interested in maintaining their gardens - and I was the person chosen. Their recommendations have since generated more work. Word of mouth has been really helpful in getting the business quickly established.”

And her background in design is not entirely going to waste. As well as being able to apply a keen eye for design on any of the gardens she is working on, she need look nowhere when it comes to designing her own promotional material.

“There are a lot of large gardens in Ayrshire, but when I was doing my market research, I didn’t find there were too many lady gardeners offering garden care, as I was intending. There were a lot of people offering decking, paving and hard landscaping - which I don’t - but no-one, really concentrating solely on garden care.

"Also, many people I spoke to wanted someone knowledgeable, reliable and that they could trust in their garden, and also committed to working on a regular, weekly basis. They didn’t want someone starting a job and only half-finishing it.”

For more information telephone 07771 732 490.

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