Green Initiatives

Sustainable Landscape Practices for the Chicago Area

Eco-Friendly Landscape Design

Enriching the environment

At James Martin Associates, we strive to enrich lives through beautiful landscapes. We are also committed to enriching our environment through sustainable initiatives that protect the landscapes we create.

Green strategies and practices save dollars and minimize the carbon footprint of site maintenance. Our long-term commitment to sustainable practices demonstrates our enhanced industry stewardship.

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“I contacted James Martin Associates for my patio design. I worked really well with the landscape designer on the look/aesthetic I wanted. California mid-century ranch meets Illinois weather. We asked them to mix in various finishes, Trex, stamped concrete, paver walls and blue step stones. The plan they provided was spectacular. The finished product exceeded our expectations and then some. I couldn’t have asked for an easier process, friendly staff or high quality installation.”


“I wanted to thank you and the team for the great job you did at my house. Your work is excellent and Kim and I truly appreciate all the extras that you did to make it just right.”

Gregg and Kim
landscape waste recycling

reusing existing job site materials

Organic Matter Recycling

  • We compost all of the organic matter we haul away from a job site, saving room in our landfills and reducing the emissions necessary to transport and dump the materials
  • Instead of branches, grass clippings, sod, soil, and other yard waste going to the landfill, we recycle as much of it as possible
  • JMA screens about 3,000-4,000 cubic yards of waste annually, which creates over 1,500 yards of rich organic mulch
  • This mulch is then used as an amendment in new landscape plantings as well as shrub and flower beds on both residential and commercial properties
  • These added nutrients allow for more healthy plant materials, prevent weed growth, retain moisture, and add curb appeal

Non-Organic Recycling

  • We recycle old concrete and flagstone scraps from project removals and demolitions
  • Instead of sending these materials to a landfill, JMA crushes these materials into a small size similar to gravel which is then used for sub-bases under patios, driveways, and other landscape hardscapes
  • Metal scraps, wooden pallets, and plastic materials are taken to the recycling plant where they are broken down to be reused
other green strategies and practices

reducing our carbon footprint

We employ a variety of sustainable techniques, such as:

  • Use of biodiesel for the JMA fleet that reduces carbon dioxide by an estimated 23,000 lbs. per year
  • Travelling fewer than 5 minutes from site to site, which means that we put more work into our clients’ sites and less time burning fuel by sitting in traffic
  • The use of liquid brine (consisting of beet juice and calcium chloride) versus rock salt for deicing services that reduces salt by 60% and also reduces carbon by minimizing salt transportation
  • JMA’s substitution of organic mulch instead of shredded hardwood bark mulch that saves an estimated 80,000 lbs of carbon dioxide per year
  • Offering our clients the most sustainable approach to their needs, including the use of organic fertilizer, drip irrigation, native plant offerings, plant placement, spot spray applications, rain barrels and cisterns
  • In our office, we use as little paper as possible, only printing what is necessary and doing so on paper that uses recycled materials
  • Coupled with our dedication to the smart recycling of our trash, we do our part to reuse, reduce, and recycle on and off the job site

For the past decade, JMA has been one of the most nationally recognized companies in National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP)’s environmental awards.

We are proud to do our part for the environment.

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