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From the Field: FNGLA President Ed Bravo Talks Water

Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Article by: Certification News

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Aside from being one of Mother Nature's most precious gifts, water is also currently a hot topic in the landscape industry. No one knows this better than FNGLA President Ed Bravo who during his installation speech, highlighted the issue of water use and conservation, stating it will be a key focal point of his presidency. 

FNGLA's Kate Clary spoke with Bravo to get his thoughts: 

FNGLA: Given water is one of the initiatives you plan to highlight during your tenure as president, how do you see this evolving issue affecting the way professionals in our industry perform their job functions?

Bravo: The way I see it, we no longer have a choice. It's learn to use less landscape water, or we're going to be regulated right out of business. We will all need to apply the Florida-Friendly Landscape (TM) principles in landscape/irrigation design, installation and maintenance. 

FNGLA: As one of the architects of FNGLA's upcoming landscape irrigation technician certification, how do you see it helping to prepare Florida's industry professionals?

Bravo: The irrigation technician certification will create a pathway to new skills and information necessary for employers/employees to successfully prove basic competency. 

FNGLA: As a professional operating in a city (Gainesville) where water regulations are especially stringent, what's helped you keep ahead of water's evolving regulatory landscape? 

Bravo: With the help of FNGLA staff, the Florida Water Star (SM) program has given us the training/testing to improve our landscape irrigation efficiency through specific design criteria for both irrigation and landscape design. These changes were difficult in both time and dollars, but they absolutely do save water. And, with each new project, our crews become more efficient and accustomed to the process. This is not to say I agree with 100% of the requirements nor will I stop pushing back on overreach. The key is for us to stay informed and involved in the process in your area before regulations mandate you do so.

Bravo serves as general manager/owner at Big Trees Plantation, a wholesale tree farm and full-service landscape and irrigation contractor based in Newberry, Florida. He also currently serves as FNGLA's 2017-2018 president.

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