Have you ever watched Yard Crashers, the show with the really cute landscaping host, on the DIY network? I have a lot…especially during the reno.
During our year-long renovation, my family and I lived the DIY network. We were surrounded by things that needed to be done everywhere–even the yard was a hot mess.
Every time we went to the home improvement store, I kept hoping that Ahmed Hassan with his camera crew would pop out and ask to go crash our yard. Sadly, our landscaper in shinning armor never came to our house in Birmingham; however, he did come to the Birmingham Home and Garden Show 2014 where the VIP got to interview the expert yard crasher, who is also a contributor to the CBS Early Show and NBC’s Today Show.
Okay, that is enough chit chat for now. Are y’all ready for the VIP’s interview with Ahmed Hassan of DIY network’s Yard Crashers? *drum roll*
VIP: What is your favorite part about being a TV host?
Ahmed: My favorite part about being a TV host is that because I host reality-based TV shows, I get to just be me–I get to do what I want to do and build off of my own inspiration. Landscaping is something I have spent most of my life doing, and it has always been interesting to me even when I was a little kid. Now, it is really cool to see other people being interested in what I love doing–which is landscaping. To be able to share my passion for landscaping on TV, to be in the limelight, and to get paid TV dollars is a heck of a lot better than just being your average gardener!
VIP: And you get to be you!
Ahmed: Yes, I get to be me, and it works–that’s the best part about it!
VIP: Exactly! If you weren’t Ahmed Hassan, playing Ahmed Hassan, it would not be nearly as entertaining to watch.
Ahmed: I do not think I am the best actor–I can act like Ahmed everyday, all day long, and I know all the lines! I can even put on a little extra for TV because as a host, you have to learn how to spice up things. You are always slightly amused, and you have to come in with a lot of energy at the beginning of the show–things like that are a little bit of a stretch, but not so much that it pulls me away from my authentic self.
VIP: Who inspired you to start landscaping?
Ahmed: My inspiration was really my dad. He was a landscaper, and I grew up watching him work. He soon moved on to do construction and truck driving. I grew up around blue-collar work and around learning to work with your hands. Through that, I sort of evolved into that type of work too…I had a wake up call that people who work a lot with their hands typically do not make a lot of money–and I knew that I wanted to make good money and be highly respected. I knew that I did not want to just be a lawn jokey. So, that’s when I decided that I needed to become more educated in the field. I have been able to build a career where I am interacting with people, problem solving, and creating beautiful spaces, and I love doing all of those things. I never imagined that doing the things I loved would have developed into the career that it is now.
VIP: Absolutely! You have to do what you love–if you don’t, you will never be truly happy!
Ahmed: I agree. I am seeing if I can prove this in my lifetime…if you love what you do, you create such an energy and such a passion around what you do that people want you and want to be around you. It’s not so much what you’re doing that attracts them, but it is the love and the passion behind what you are doing. That’s how I went from being a gardener to being a television host and probably the country’s most popular landscape expert.
VIP: When it comes to landscaping a yard, what would you say is the most important element?
Ahmed: It’s like most things, it is a lot of conscientious planning. If you want to build something, you really need to take the time to think about what you are going to do and how you are going to do it. Planning and doing research in today’s day and age is really easy because we have Google right at our fingertips, and we can find out everything we need to know right on our mobile phones….If you do not want to do the research, pay the right people who have the knowledge to assist you with what you want to do before you go out and waste a bunch of money on something you do not know how to do.
VIP: What landscaping advice do you have for homeowners that are looking to spruce up their yards for spring?
Ahmed: Sprucing up your yard is really no different than sprucing up your house. You have to clean it up–mow the lawn, trim the shrubs, rake the leaves, put some fresh mulch in the flower beds, plant some new flowers, and add other things that make your yard work for you. A lot of times, I joke how I am like a glorified outdoor janitor because we always clean up people’s yards before getting started with the “crashing,” and they are amazed at how such a simple task really makes their lawn look amazing.
VIP: What color best describes you?
Ahmed: Oh, Lord…ahh!
VIP: I know, what color best describes you…crazy question *wink*
Ahmed: Well, I going to go with burnt-orange, and the reason I say that is because it is a color you will find in nature, and I am mostly a natural guy. That burnt-orange/rust color has a little bit of bling and a little bit of interest–it is a natural pop of color–and I think that color best describes me because I have a little pop of this and a little pop of that, but when it comes down to it, I am just an average guy like everyone else.