Elite Landscaping was founded and incorporated in 1997 by Bob Landers along with Tracy and Bill Fortman. Santos Gessler, our head hardscape supervisor, has also been with us since the very beginning, and Bob’s brother, Brian, was with us for a time, but has moved on to a new career. We are a family owned and operated business that prides itself on knowing our customers and being able to provide a personal touch.
Bob Landers and Tracy Fortman first met while working for the same truck equipment company in Maryland. Bob and Tracy grew up in the same small town and attended the same high school. In the fall of 1996, Bob and Tracy met a local landscaper who had come into the truck equipment company. Upon learning that the owner of the landscape company was looking to retire, but wanted someone to run his business, Bob and Tracy decided it was time to make a move. After successfully running someone else’s landscape company, Bob and Tracy began thinking that maybe it was time to start their own. And that’s how we began. Bob’s brother, Brian, and Tracy’s husband, Bill, joined us from The Davey Tree Expert Company, where he had worked for over 15 years.
When we started in February of 1997, we had one truck, a couple of lawn mowers, and Tracy in the basement office of Bob’s townhouse doing the paperwork. Bob, Bill, Brian, and Santos comprised our first crew, mowing lawns, fertilizing, mulching beds, and trimming and pruning shrubs. Our advertising consisted of flyers Tracy made on the computer, and were distributed at 4:30 Sunday mornings, so potential customers would get them along with their Sunday papers. This was a great marketing tool – 90% of our customer base came, and still comes, from word-of-mouth referrals.
As our business has grown, we have added several additional crews, trucks, and equipment. We have also expanded our services to include walkways, patios, retaining walls, decks, fences, and much more. We don’t distribute flyers at 4:30am anymore, and Tracy no longer works from Bob’s basement. In 2005, Elite moved into our current office space in Burke, Virginia. And in 2007, we added Judy Halesky, a landscape architect and designer with over 25 years of industry experience, to the Elite family.
Elite Landscaping is licensed, bonded, and insured. Our employees are safe and responsible, and will tailor their service to our customer’s needs and desires. They are Licensed Certified Pesticide Applicators in the state of Virginia, and hold Contractor’s Licenses in the state of Virginia. We are ICPI and NCMA certified for pavers and retaining walls. Our service area encompasses Fairfax, Prince William, Arlington, Alexandria and surrounding areas.
Elite has always prided itself on providing the highest quality of services at reasonable and fair prices. We strive to exceed your expectations. Over the past 11 years, we are proud to be able to say that we still maintain 95% of our original customer base!