August 30, 2022
Joe SalemiThere’s so much going on with Landscape Ontario, we often forget that the issues we’re addressing are similar to those in the rest of the country. That’s where the Canadian Nursery Landscape Association (CNLA) comes in. Most of you may know and interact with CNLA to get your truck or equipment discounts. Through our partnership with CNLA, this year alone, Landscape Ontario members have saved just over $9.6 million on vehicle purchases/leases with Chevrolet and GMC. This is a staggering number which highlights the value for your hard-earned membership dollars.

CNLA is so much more than vehicle discounts though. In fact, their history goes back 100 years. For the last century, CNLA has been working nationally on matters that relate to the landscape trades. This national, not-for-profit trade association is the voice for Landscape Ontario members on matters that are federally connected.

In August, the CNLA board of directors and all of the executive directors from each of the provincial landscape trades associations met in Ottawa with the purpose of aligning agendas and advancing the profession nationally. I had the privilege of being at the meetings where we discussed the biggest issues you’re faced with everyday and aligning the work that each association is doing. The meetings were also about sharing ideas, partnering on projects, and significantly moving the needle on what matters most.

The majority of time was spent discussing the labour challenges the landscape trades are facing and examining the strategies and tactics each provincial association is working on and what is happening nationally. The consensus is that there really isn’t one solution. Rather, it will be a multi-layered, parallel approach to closing the labour gap. Initiatives like Landscape Ontario’s GROW program are longer term solutions, along with increased leadership upskilling, further access to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, youth engagement, and living wage compensation philosophies.

Outside of the very focused and comprehensive national meetings, we celebrated the amazing work in the landscape trades with the National Awards of Landscape Excellence.You can view all the outstanding award recipients at

The visit to Ottawa was capped off with an industry tour, visiting local garden centres, public gardens, and some of Ottawa’s most popular attractions. It all culminated with a gala celebrating CNLA’s 100th anniversary.

I encourage you to learn more about the CNLA and to get involved with national committees and work to help advance the landscape trades. We’re proud to be part of this important federation that gives us a national, unified voice. Visit to learn more.
Joe Salemi CAE
LO Deputy Executive Director and Director of Operations