Southwest Landscape Management has the tools and the expertise to keep your lawn and landscaping in full bloom

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Many of Southwest Landscape Management’s residential and commercial clients like the ease and convenience of being on a monthly maintenance program.

By Patricia Nugent

As our lawns come back to life this month, now’s the perfect time to take stock of how your yard fared over the winter.

Spring cleanup is best done early—and by professionals.

Steve Rak, president and owner at Southwest Landscape Management, says his crews are already in full gear doing spring clean-ups for homes, commercial properties, office buildings, rental properties, apartments, hotels and homeowners and condo associations.

“Nothing transforms the look of your home or business as much as edging and planting new nursery stock,” he says. “Before that, we cut down ornamental grasses if needed, get rid of weeds, and blow out leaves and debris from beds. We use a piece of equipment known as a bed shaper for clean, crisp lines.”

May is also one of his busiest months for mulch.

“For cosmetic and horticulturally beneficial reasons, we recommend that you mulch every year.” says Steve. “That’s also a good reason to only work with the best quality mulch. For decades we’ve worked with the two best mulch suppliers in the area. And we drop the mulch by hand for the best-looking, most precise results.”

Building Together
Steve’s father started Southwest Landscape Management in 1995.

“He was in his late-40s and had retired from United Airlines,” says Steve, who notes the company is named for the southwestern suburbs of Cleveland that it serves. “I was already 26 years old, so I was working here from the beginning. We built the business up together.”

Putting the customer first and treating people with VIP service has always been a pillar of this growing company.

Southwest Landscape Management can provide landscaping ideas and suggestions that best suit your needs.

Although they began with more commercial work, he says over the past several years they’ve been filling a residential niche and formed a separate group of crews called the Enhancement Division, with all the equipment to handle smaller jobs quickly and efficiently.

“We’ll do jobs as small as mulch only, and jobs as big as transforming large corporate headquarters, providing the same level of service to all of our customers,” says Steve. “Our front office staff is great. I’m always surprised when customers tell me they tried calling other companies and never got a call back. That just doesn’t make sense to me. When our clients call, they know they’ll speak with Laura. She will get their information and then either myself or Jeremiah will go to the client’s home or business to meet them and find out more about the job.”

Steve says Clevelanders have been more eager than ever to invest in their own great outdoors.

“I think having to stay at home the past couple years because of the pandemic made homeowners take stock of their environment,” he says. “Spring is the perfect time to plant trees and shrubs. The sooner we can put stock in the ground, the more time its root system will have to establish itself and thrive all summer long.”

Steve Rak,owner of Southwest Landscape Management

Get on the Schedule
Steve says that as soon as Memorial Day Weekend hits, his phones start ringing off the hook with people looking for spring yard clean-ups, so the earlier you get on his schedule, the better.

Many of his residential and commercial clients like the ease and convenience of being on a monthly maintenance program.

When it comes to full-service landscaping, the highly trained crews do it all, including:

• Edging of beds
• Mulch application
• Weekly lawn mowing
• Maintenance of beds, weeding
• Shrub and tree pruning
• Fertilization

Working with Local Nurseries
As past president of the Ohio Landscapers Association, Steve has formed many fruitful relationships over the years and knows where to find specific stock when others may not be able to offer it.

Southwest Landscape Management has access to a large selection of tree and plant stock.

“It seems with the supply chain issues and labor shortage that a lot of popular trees are getting scarce,” he says. “We are fortunate to be able to select from the widest choices of stock. If we can’t get the exact type of stock a client wants, we can always get something approximate.”

Transforming your landscape is both an art and a science. It can be something simple like cleaning out, deep edging and mulching your landscape beds, or you can opt for adding or replacing some or all of your plant material. Steve notes that whatever option you are interested in, Southwest can provide ideas and suggestions that best suit your needs.

Southwest’s Enhancement Division handles residential jobs quickly and efficiently.

“Our clients appreciate it that we never take a cookie-cutter approach,” he says. “We’ve done so many yard transformations over the years, if a client is having trouble imagining what they want, we can put something beautiful together for them.”

Homeowners, commercial property owners and HOAs can get a free estimate by calling Steve Rak at 440-748-6000 or emailing him at Southwest Landscape Management is headquartered at 33593 Royalton Road in Columbia Station. The company is always looking for talented and motivated individuals to join its landscape team. You can apply online. For more information, go to

Categories: Westside Home & Garden