Former teacher branches out to grow new lawn care business in North Leeds & Harrogate

We sat down with David Brown, the new business owner bringing TruGreen professional lawn care to North Leeds and Harrogate to chat about his life and new business.

David Brown has taken an unconventional route into the lawn care industry.

With 13 years as a secondary school science teacher behind him, it may not seem the obvious choice to call it quits on a decade-spanning vocation and do something entirely new.

But when I sat down with David on his first day as the owner of TruGreen North Leeds, there could be no doubt whether or not he had made the right call.

My first question broached the root of this dynamic: what was the reason behind this big career decision?

David tells me that he has spent the last 13 years teaching physics A-Level and combined sciences to secondary school children, living and working in Yorkshire, around where he grew up, with his wife and three young children.

The only time David has ever lived away from Yorkshire is when he studied at university in Manchester. But once his studies were over, David says he didn’t have much to keep him there. Feeling a little worn down by the flat lands of the cityscape, he wanted to get back to the land he knew.

And it is a similar call to nature that has driven David toward his new business.

I’ve always enjoyed working outside and working in the garden,” he tells me. “I’ve got an allotment, I’ve got a greenhouse. I enjoy growing things. I’ve always enjoyed growing things, he says.

The events of the past few years have given many the time to reflect on their lives, with the limbo of lockdowns causing many to reignite passions from their past. For David, plant life and gardening still provoke a spark of childlike wonder, and he says this is something that he found he wanted to make a part of his daily life.

I don’t know if this is just me,” he says, but I still get excited when you grow things from seed, it still seems like something quite magical that you can take something and it just becomes a thing. And that’s not gone away.

He tells me that he then found this at odds with the career he found himself in, leading to a revaluation of his path.

“The older I got, I thought, I don’t really want to spend the rest of my working life indoors,” he says.

But this is easier said than done. David, like many others with vocational careers, has found it difficult to branch out on his own.

I had been looking for a route out of teaching for quite a while, and it’s a difficult thing to do. It’s quite difficult to kind of find a route [out],” he says.

I would apply for other jobs and not even get considered for an interview for quite a lot of them,” he explains.

Meanwhile, “You’d apply for another teaching job, and it’s like they’re biting your hand off because there aren’t any science teachers and physics teachers.

Beginning to feel penned in, David knew something had to give,

I just thought, well, the only thing I could do is do something by myself. I’m 38 now, no one’s going to come and help me out. I’m going to have to do it myself.

So, David decided to make the leap to starting his own business, supported by our TruGreen franchise network. I asked him how this decision was made, particularly with the UK amid a cost of living crisis.

“It just seemed like the right time to take that big jump before the kids got too old and I didn’t have the energy to do it anymore,” he says.  

When is a good time? When is a bad time? I don’t know. I don’t think anyone knows. I think if people knew the answer to that, no one would start a business [he laughs]. You’ve got to do it at some point.

Spurred on by the support of an internationallyrenowned franchise and a love for the outdoors, David has made the jump into starting a business that he loves, backed with all of the knowledge, equipment and care to make a difference in the lives and lawns of people across North Leeds.

Now, it is with a glint in his eye and a spring in his step that David sets out on his journey as a TruGreen franchisee.

I’m looking forward to having happy customers that have got an improved lawn [and] to people saying thank you for doing a good job. I think if you just gave me money to own devices I would spend it on doing gardens,” he says.

I would make a patch of land look better than it was, to begin with, that would be what I would do.

With TruGreen, the life of David’s dreams can become a reality, and so can the lawn of yours.

As David says:

“We’ve got the right products, at a good price, and we’ve got the expertise to make your lawn look as good as it possibly can be. We’ve got years of experience and we know how to get things looking great.

And also, the service that you receive is going to be personal and excellent because the people doing it have a vested interest in making sure that you receive good service.

It’s true. Like David, every one of our franchisees is passionate about what they do and about the service they provide. Our goal is to set you on the path to the lawn you’ve always wanted.

And as David’s story proves, taking that first step can be daunting, but with TruGreen, it doesn’t have to be.

That’s why we offer a free 14-point lawn analysis to all of our customers. By simply finding your nearest TruGreen business today, you can receive a visit from one of our expert lawn care technicians, who will carry out a full inspection of your lawn, to draw up a fully customised plan to suit the needs of you and your lawn, for free!

If you are in the North Leeds and Harrogate area and would like to receive a free consultation with David or just find out more about our services, give TruGreen North Leeds a call today on 0113 873 0343 / 07517 195464.