Insights and tips on how to protect your inn or bed & breakfast, giving you and your guests peace of mind.

Ward, Hayden
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Planting 101: Adding Green to Your Garden & Wallet

Bed & Breakfast Gardening Safety

When it comes to landscaping, many inns go the simple route of shrubs and a few trees. It’s often forgotten that your guests’ experience relates to the gardens, trails, and park areas of the property. The right landscaping could be the deciding factor in the amount of bookings you receive. You are designing a retreat, a first impression and an important part of your brand identity. Here are a few suggestions to make your inn go green with plants and potentially add green to your wallet. 

Low-Maintenance Plants

You want your inn’s landscaping to be noticed for the right reasons! As a business owner, the last thing you want is constant upkeep. Less is more when it comes to landscaping.

While there’s no such thing as a maintenance-free garden, you can choose plants that will cut down on the amount of watering and pruning. Here are a few great low-maintenance options:

  • Fescue
  • Coneflowers
  • Lavender
  • Aloe
  • Burro’s tail
  • Small palms


Get Creative

Effective landscaping is achieved when there is color and clear lines. It draws the eyes to certain parts of the exterior and adds depth to the property. Even if you live in a place with the driest of summers and the coldest winters, annuals will have your property full of blooms year-round. The constant color is powerful.

Lines have a major influence on how guests will navigate through your landscaping. Curved lines are typically used to highlight water elements around a garden because they put the focus on a central point. Vertical lines are dynamic and draw the eye forward, while horizontal lines create more of a relaxed feel.

Keep in mind if you live in an area prone to wildfires, landscape your property with the three different fire zones in mind to help reduce the spread of one.

Allergy and Pet-Friendly Plants

Allergies are extremely common among adults and children. It’s always best to avoid planting allergy-inducing flowers and shrubs to reduce the risk of a guest having an attack. According to WebMD, plants you may want to avoid adding to your landscaping are:

Flowers/herbs: Amaranth, chamomile, chrysanthemums, daisies and ordinary sunflowers.

Shrubs/vines: Cypress, jasmine vine, juniper and wisteria.

If your inn is pet friendly, avoid planting anything that could be harmful to pets and consider providing your guests with disposable waste bags. Designating bathroom spots for pets can also protect your plants from wilting away.

Wear Landscaping Safety Glasses

There is always the chance of dirt, a stick, a pebble or other debris getting into your eye while gardening. Even if you are just pulling weeds, it’s a wise idea to wear landscaping safety glasses. These glasses are similar to other safety protective wear but are tinted to protect your eyes from harsh sunlight.

Pesticide Safety

Landscaping sounds pretty straightforward when talking about pulling weeds, watering, and planting. However, landscaping comes with a few hazards where safety concerns are needed. While there are many pesticide-free options, it’s important to always read the product label. Any chemical pesticide products should come with a safety list. As always, when working with chemicals, make sure to cover your mouth, nose, hands and wear protective eyewear.

Fresh from the Garden

A major selling point to your inn could be an edible garden. Grocery shopping for guest meals can become expensive . . . fast! You can save a little money by growing your own vegetable and herb garden right on the property. Additionally, everyone likes to see where their food comes from.

Well-Lit Outdoor Spaces

A well-lit property helps your vacationers see the steps and sidewalks leading into your inn, thus preventing falls from poorly lit walkways. Added lighting behind shrubs and selected lights that highlight architecture or windows can warm your property’s appearance and welcome your guests back after an evening of exploring. Consider adding solar lights along the pathways. 

Don’t Forget the Inside!

Swap your faux plants for real ones! Studies have shown that plants clean the indoor air by increasing humidity, absorbing toxins, and producing oxygen. They also give off a strong eco-friendly vibe that your guests will love. Plants are where design meets the environment and where eco-friendly travelers reside. 

Stop and Smell the Flowers with CBIZ Innkeepers Insurance

Simply adding mulch around landscaping or planting a few shrubs to greet guests can make the world’s difference. For more planting ideas and the risks they may have at your inn, download our indoor and outdoor plant guide. Grow your green thumb and protect your garden with the correct insurance. To learn more about protecting your business through CBIZ Innkeepers Insurance, connect with a member of our team.

This blog may contain scenarios that are provided as examples only. Coverage is subject to the terms, conditions and exclusions of the policy issued. The information provided is general in nature and may be affected by changes in law or the interpretation of such laws. The reader is advised to contact a professional prior to taking any action based upon this information.

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CBIZ Innkeepers Insurance, a division of CBIZ Insurance Services, Inc., is the largest insurer of innkeeper businesses in the United States. As part of an $850 million New York Stock Exchange traded company (CBZ), we developed a specific policy coverage to meet the needs for inns and bed & breakfasts, and the amenities offered by these businesses. Our policy is underwritten by an A.M. Best Rated A++ (Superior) company.

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