Everyday is a day in the Garden!

I will have to admit that I kind of stumbled into this as a profession.  I grew up in a small Eastern, NC town.  My parents were both hard working public school teachers and administrators who saw the importance in raising a responsible and caring child.  Like most kids, I was put to work at a young age doing things around the house like mowing the grass and helping my dad take care of the yard.  I never realized that this would be something I would grow to love so much.  

My grandparents had a fairly large garden that I would watch, help, and learn about when I stayed with them on weekends.  Tending, picking, and shelling peas with the family are still a fond memory of mine.  I’d give anything to be able to do that with my Grandparents again!

Anyway as I got older I started having summer jobs that worked around sports, helping family friends from church, or work doing everything from basic labor at a welding shop, to carpentry, to landscaping.  I never, ever imagined these jobs would be the ground floor from which I would choose my eventual career.  

My parent’s goal in getting me these jobs wasn’t for me to make a lot of money.  It was to show me the importance and value in working hard, doing quality work, and respecting those who gave me the opportunities to learn these essential values.


Once I was out of College I had moved down to Wilmington NC where I got a job at a landscape company while I looked for a “proper full time job”.   My first position was pretty much just a grunt.  I did all the things no one wanted to do.  Lots and lots of digging, haha.  As time went on the owner saw that I had an eye for design.  I didn’t even see it at the time, I just knew I liked pretty things and that I wanted them a certain way.   She gave me more and more responsibility until I was running a crew and meeting with clients and helping them with the layouts of their projects.  I worked at this company for just over a year.  It was after this year that a few of my friends from school graduated from college and convinced me to move to Charleston SC with them.


Charleston is where everything fell into place.  I’m a huge history buff so all the old grand estates and gardens were just like heaven for me!!  I was hired to a position at a local landscape company doing design/sales and started to develop my own sense of design and appreciation for thinking of landscaping as more of an “art form” than a trade.   My specialty was the small courtyards and container gardens that Charleston is so famous for.  I still stop by to look at how these projects are maturing when I am down there.  It is so gratifying to see something grow and evolve over time. 


After 6 years in Charleston I moved to Charlotte with my girlfriend at the time.  Never have I made a better decision!!!  Charlotte is a fantastic place to ply my trade.  I worked for a luxury design/build firm in sales and design and really got a lot of education on best practices not just in the landscape side of things but in the client side of things as well.  I learned how to create appropriate expectations, how to deal with hiccups in the construction process, and how to manage both clients and laborers/subs.  As we all know, construction is something that very rarely goes off without some form of small hitch. 


Another thing I saw as I grew as a professional was a lack of standards.  This is a pet peeve of mine!!  Just because the client doesn’t know the difference is no reason to cut a corner.  They are paying for a premium product and I feel they should get every bit of what they are paying for! Also as someone who is a big believer in fairness I don’t think that just because I give a good product, that I should charge crazy amounts of money for it.  

We have a business and we are in it to make money for sure.  But at the end of the day it is so much more important for me to bring beauty and happiness into the world.  It is my personal opinion that I get to do this every single day at work.  I love building relationships with people and have a goal to be part of their lives for the foreseeable future. 

I could not be happier with where I am personally and professionally at this time.   In my opinion I have the best job in the world.  I know that Allium is going to grow to become one of Charlotte’s premier design/build landscape firms.  Just know we strive to continue to grow and improve in all things.  We look forward to hearing from you.

 
-Philip Carter
"Philip was great.  We asked for a full plan for our backyard, and then worked with him to execute certain pieces.

He was prompt with replies, and drew up a plan that we really liked, fun to work with, his pricing was fair, and his delivery on the work that we asked him to perform was on time! (a very pleasant surprise, since you always just expect delays with work like this).

 We'll definitely be working with him again and we transformed our backyard."
- John C.
A Happy Customer
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