Eliot landscaping company acquires rival, poised to dominate York County lawns

An Eliot-based landscaping company that has been competing with a neighboring company for nearly four decades has now bought out its rival.

According to a press release, Piscataqua Landscaping & Tree Service has acquired Jacqueline Nooney Landscape Inc. at an undisclosed price. With around a dozen Nooney employees at Piscataqua, the company expects almost 150 employees, spokesman Jamie Storrs told Mainebiz on Wednesday.

Jacquelyn Nooney is a graduate of Yale University’s Art School, who moved to Maine in 1982 and started the landscaping company two years later. In a letter to customers, she said she was retiring and called Piscataqua “the only company in the region that can continue to provide high quality service [my clients] are used to it. “

Justin Gamester, President and CEO of Piscataqua, said in the press release: “We have worked in the same neighborhoods and with the same clients as Jackie over the years. We are honored to continue the good work of the JNL team. We have become known over the past four decades and plan to continue this commitment for many years to come. “

Piscataqua was founded in 1979 by Booth Hemingway, who graduated from the University of New Hampshire with a degree in horticulture and Spanish. He then started the business with a lawn mower, pickup truck and rented shed in Portsmouth, NH

Today, Piscataqua operates from its headquarters in Eliot on Route 236, which is also less than a mile away from Nooney’s store. Both companies provide a range of lawn and garden maintenance, landscaping and construction, snow removal and other services.

Piscataqua is the largest landscaping company in the Seacoast region, according to Storrs, and is based on a service area that stretches from Kennebunkport to northern Massachusetts.

Such a large space requirement seems unusual. According to an industry report by IBIS World from 2020, there are over 513,000 landscaping companies with 1.12 million employees nationwide. That is an average of around two employees per company.

The $ 99 billion industry has no major players with more than 5% market share, the report said.

IBIS World said the industry should recover from the setbacks caused by the pandemic. “As economic activity recovers, consumers and businesses will again be able to pay for professional landscaping,” the report said. “An aging population is also likely to benefit the industry as seniors seek landscapers to maintain their yards.”

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