Annual Evaluations Case Study
Green Shield Certified for Landscapes
The IPM Institute and Midwest Grows Green regularly evaluate the practices of park districts, schools, municipalities and companies to help improve their sustainable landscaping programs. In 2022, the IPM Institute’s Green Shield Certified (GSC) program released their Guide & Evaluation for Landscapes that GSC clients must pass every three years.
“The GSC evaluator visits the client headquarters, interviews the landscape manager or company owner about their sustainability and business practices, shadows a client visit and looks at equipment, storage, handling and application of products,” described Ryan Anderson, IPM Institute’s Community IPM Manager.
The evaluator compiles all this information into an interim report that benchmarks the client’s policies and practices against the GSC for Landscapes Guide & Evaluation’s minimum requirements and scored practices. GSC applicants must meet all minimum requirements and score 80% or above on the scored practices to receive recognition. The requirements and practices relate to managing legal, environmental or human health risks, increasing transparency, improving business and operational efficiency and more. The evaluations always provide clients with recommendations for how to improve their landscaping service or landscape.
“We want our GSC for Landscapes clients to go above and beyond our standards,” Anderson explained. “Hence our slogan, The Sustainable Standard for Premium Protection.”
Many of the recommendations follow LawnandLand.org values, concepts and practices to limiting pesticide applications on recreational turfgrass fields and natural areas.