APPS & WORKFLOW
10 Best Landscaping Photo Apps
Ryan Harmon, CompanyCam
6 June 2017
CompanyCam is committed to making your work less difficult through any means possible. For your convenience, we have dug deep and narrowed in on the 10 best apps to accelerate your Landscaping Business’ workflow.
Dirr’s Tree & Shrub Finder
In 1998, Michael Dirr wrote a big book called Manual of Woody Landscape Plants. It was big, it was brown, and it was conclusive – it basically became a go-to guide for landscapers everywhere. In 2010, Timber Press got smart and said, “Let’s build an app around that knowledge.” Thus, the app, creatively titled, Dirr’s Tree and Shrub Finder was created and made your life a heckuva lot easier.
The Dirr’s app boasts over 7000 images covering over 1600 species and 7800 cultivar… if you aren’t sure what cultivar are, this app is going to be an education. (Oh, cultivars are plants that have been cultivated – roses, azaleas, etc. Basically, they’re test tube plants). Bottom line here, Dirr’s app is going to supply you with everything you could possibly want or need to make your client’s heads spin with the breadth of your knowledge. As their neighbor is planting another rose bush, you’ll be hooking them up with rare Heavenly Blue Morning Glories and they’ll thank you for the bragging rights you’ve blessed them with.
On top of all this, Dirr’s app is super searchable – 72 different search criteria – and easy to use. The app’s design is simple and intuitive – there will be no hassle finding the information you need quickly. To top it all off, the team behind the Dirr’s app does a great job of updating its database with the most current knowledge on the plants you’ll be looking at. The bottom line here is the Dirr’s app will be an incredibly useful tool in your landscape design arsenal.
In the iTunes store, the Dirr’s app is available for $14.99 and while that might seem a bit steep, your savings will be obvious quickly when you compare it to the $70 you’d have to pay for the latest edition of the classic book from Amazon.
CompanyCam is the ultimate photo application for business. Utilizing GPS, the app automatically organizes every photo taken by job site. You and your team can take unlimited photos—all of which are location and time-stamped, sent to the cloud, and stored securely—meaning you can access any project, anytime, anywhere.
But the real power of the app is displayed when you bring on other technicians. Because the app does the organizing automatically, every technician saves time. There is no question as to where to store something and managers have instant vision into every job site.
CompanyCam has a straightforward pricing structure. For every user that needs to take photos, it is $12/month.
iScape does what just about any software does that begins with the ever-present “i” – it puts you in the driver’s seat. Simply put, iScape is one of the best landscaping apps out there if what you need is a tool to help you and your clients see where they’re beginning and where you’re going to take them by project’s end.
With a simple but intuitive user interface, iScape allows you to snap a photo of your project area and then build in any and everything one could imagine – from shrubbery to pools – to meet the design needs of projects of all different sizes. Got a simple redesign of small landscaping bed? Yeah, iScape will help you do that. Got an acreage that needs extensive landscaping and a monstrous retaining wall? Yeah, iScape has you covered. iScape’s extensive database will grant you the versatility you require to meet your client’s expectations.
Whether you’re a do-it-yourselfer or a landscape design professional – iScape offers you a slick landscaping app that will help you bring clarity and efficiency to any project you’re about to tackle.
iScape offers both a free and a paid version of their app. At $9.99, you will probably want to purchase the full paid version in order to take full advantage of all iScape has to offer.
If you are looking for the one landscape design app that will single-handedly replace all the landscaping reference material you have built up over the years, Landscaper’s Companion is it. I know that will come as music to your ears if you are as tired as I am of pouring over a book’s index, trying to remember if that shrub is deciduous or semi-deciduous. Am I right?
The bottom line here is that Landscaper’s Companion offers you an incredibly simple, fully searchable database of over 26,000 plants. Once you dig in, you’ll find that you can search for just about anyway you’d like – from a plant’s sun and water requirements to their size when they are fully mature. In a nutshell, this reference tool will essentially make you capable of solving any puzzle that could be thrown at you during a landscape design project. It’s versatility will grant you landscaping Grand Champion powers that will set you apart from your competitors who keep turning to the same tired solutions over and over again.
Finally, along with the plant database (with over 21,000 photos), Landscaper’s Companion helps you organize plant listings by client/project in a fully sharable format enabling you to stay on top of multiple projects, all from your phone or tablet.
Landscaper’s Companion is available for $9.99 in the app store. No free version is offered but with the extensive nature of this resource, you won’t look back after purchasing it.
GPS Area Calculator
Excess materials or repurchasing because of area measurement miscalculations should be a thing of the past with the technology you have at your fingertips today. GPS Area Calculator will help you take the guesswork out of this primary step in landscape design so that you can finish a project faster and you won’t be kicking yourself for buying too much or too little product.
GPS Area Calculator works basically as you’d expect – it utilizes your mobile devices GPS data, allows you to drop pins on a map in an area you’re working, and then calculates the exact area. Simple – yeah. Useful – yeah. Why didn’t someone create this type of app sooner? Exactly.
So – imagine landscape design estimates without the guesswork, without the need to walk off areas and do a load of geometry in your head (if you’re working in any area other than a square or rectangle), and you’ve got what your landscape design will look like with GPS Area Calculator.
In the end, this app will save you time, will save both you and your client money, and will make you look like a math wizard that can estimate areas down to the square inch with loads of accuracy.
GPS Area Calculator is available in the Android Store and it will cost you nothing but save you quite a bit.
What do you think a tonnage calculator does? No, it doesn’t tell you how many of you it would take to equal an elephant – although I bet there is an app for that. A tonnage calculator calculates tonnage. Surprise. But – if you need a highly effective stone calculator, this is it.
What really sets Tonnage Calculator apart is its uniquely simple, even attractive, user interface – you’ll like using this app.
Whatever the area that you need to cover, this stone calculator app will let you know how much material you will need. Whether you’re bringing in stone or mulch – Tonnage Calculator will predict the quantity you will need and it will do so with surprising accuracy (remember that bit about wizardry?).
Again, if one of the nagging problems that is driving you crazy is the guesswork of estimates, of purchasing needs, of asking the unhelpful guy to leave the worksite to go buy more of something, Tonnage Calculator will be your new best friend and bestest buddy. Not to mention how wowed your clients will be with your speedy progress.
Tonnage Calculator is in the Google Play store and is FREE.
Binder Concrete Calculator
Moving from a more generalized tool to a highly specific tool – the Binder Concrete Calculator will, again, eliminate guesswork and assist you as you are prepping for your landscape design project.
In dealing with the hassle of calculations for retaining wall designs, footings, patio foundations, or any other number of concrete projects, wouldn’t it be nice to whip out an app that will give you an astoundingly precise estimate of the amount of ready mix cement or the number of premixed bags you’ll need to complete the project? We thought so – that’s exactly what you’d like to be able to do. Binder Concrete Calculator makes that possible.
The Binder Concrete Calculator is easy to use, has a great user interface and design, and allows for easy calculations and results that can be tapered to your needs. Results can be estimated for 40, 60, and 80-pound bags of premixed concrete but you also have the flexibility with this app to set the price per volume or per package prices to help you blow your clients’ minds with amazingly accurate estimates.
The Binder Concrete Calculator is FREE in the Google Play store but added bells and whistles catered to your needs can be added for a mere $1.99.
I know you are wondering what the Slab Calculator app does…wait, no you’re not. However, a fair question might be: why get the Slab Calculator app if I already have the Binder Concrete Calculator? Good question. The answer comes down to fine-tuning and specificity. If your world revolves around pouring slabs, why not get the app that focuses solely on that? Makes sense, right? No need for a generalized tool if you are a specialist.
The Slab Calculator asks for three simple inputs: the thickness of the slab, the width, and the length…and boom, done – an accurate estimate of the volume and weight needed for the project is fed back to you. It’s as simple as that.
Again, other apps can do the same work, the Binder Concrete Calculator can, but the point here is that when you’re on site, when what you do is slabs, why mess around with sorting through menus and pages within apps when you can have exactly what you need with one simple touch? Do you like making your life more difficult? We didn’t think so. Get the Slab Calculator if you need to pour slabs. Added perk – no ads.
The Slab Calculator app is in the Google Play store and it’s FREE.
Concrete and Agg Calculator
Chaney Enterprises designed a winner when they put together this simple app. The real gem is the versatility of the gravel calculator they’ve built into the app.
The Concrete and Agg Calculator will help with stone calculations, concrete calculations, etc., but what we were impressed by, what really turned us onto this app, is the ease they have built into the calculating gravel needs. Usage is simple with the Concrete and Agg Calculator. Upon opening the app, you click on the gravel calculator button and from there you simply input your length, width, and depth of your project area. Here’s where the true selling point comes into play – beyond these calculations, you can select from fifteen different product types – from pea gravel and 2-inch gravel to stone dust – increasing all accuracy of your estimates, and decreasing annoying overages.
Our own experience with the app impressed us with the simplicity of the interface and the ability to easily switch into a Spanish version.
Chaney’s Concrete and Agg Calculator is FREE in the Apple App Store. A slight downside is that it does feature some pretty intrusive advertising … BUT, the app is totally free so what are you complaining about!?!