BY KAREN GERHARDINGER | MIRROR REPORTER — From backyard fire pits and paver walkways to luxurious lawns and outdoor kitchens, designers, landscapers and homeowners rely on Sandman’s quality products for successful projects of all sizes.
Brothers Bobby Parker and Shaun Parker – president and vice president of the second-generation family business – point out the wide variety of finished projects that include Sandman products. Patios, pizza ovens, waterfalls and decorative stone walls are among the many ways that homeowners personalize their spaces.
“When people build, they include outdoor living in their plans,” Bobby said.
“Pinterest helps,” added Shaun. “The projects we’re seeing are on a much larger scale. People are spending more money on their backyards to stay at home and enjoy a stay-cation.”
Sandman reps can assist homeowners arriving with photos and ideas, or coordinate with area designers and contractors.
By the bag or truckload, Sandman’s premium mulches and custom blends of topsoil are the main ingredients for most landscaping projects.
“We’re the largest supplier of topsoil in the Toledo area,” Bobby said, explaining that the custom blend includes an organic mix of compost, sand and clay that filters well, holds moisture and is rich in nutrients to promote growth.
“I used the topsoil on my yard and my grass is much healthier than my neighbors’, who complain that I make them look bad,” he said with a laugh. “There are cheaper products out there, but you may not get the same results.”
Sandman’s mulch comes from Southern Ohio and is made from the bark of hardwood trees used by paper manufacturers. Unlike mulch made from pallets – which may contain staples, oils and other contaminants – the hardwood mulch is pure and is able to better hold dyes.
Of course, Sandman also has sand – the inspiration behind the founding of the company by the Parkers’ dad, Robert Parker Sr. After earning his driver’s license in 1967, their father began driving a dump truck for his brother’s company, excavating lake sites and selling the materials to local construction companies, government agencies, builders and homeowners.
In 1986, he founded Sandman, which has grown into the area’s largest supplier of building stone, topsoil, mulch, sand and landscape products, offered in three locations, including Airport Highway in Holland, Dixie Highway in Perrysburg and Sterns Road in Ottawa Lake, Mich.
“Sand and topsoil are our bread and butter,” Shaun said.
Sandman is also a large supplier of decorative stone for home, commercial or business interiors and exteriors. In addition to delivering stone for local builders, including Homes by Josh Doyle, Moline Builders and Schoen Builders, Sandman has provided stone for Metro-parks Toledo to use around Mallard Lake at Oak Openings and even as signage for the University of Chicago.
“We get our stone from 30 states and four countries, including Canada, China, Mexico and Pakistan,” Shaun said.
During the peak season, Sandman will employ 25 people, including many drivers who formerly drove for other companies and even the Ohio Department of Transportation.
“We strive to give good service at a good price with same-day delivery on products,” Bobby said.
While running a successful business has allowed the Parkers to expand to its third location, Sandman also gives back to the community, such as providing stones for churches and schools to use in projects throughout the Toledo area.
For more information, visit www.sandmansalesyard.com.