February 9, 2022

WSIP Program FAQs

What is the Water Smart Irrigation Professional Certification Program?
The Water Smart Irrigation Professional Certification Program, also referred to as the WSIP Program, is a landscape industry program to make water-efficient irrigation practices and irrigation system optimization the industry standard. The WSIP program combines both theoretical and practical hands-on training and certification, and is offered by Landscape Ontario (LO). The WSIP program was developed in partnership with Landscape Ontario, the Region of Peel, York Region.

What is the goal of the program?
Engage the service sector that deals directly with residents and businesses and create opportunities for market transformation. The goal is to then provide specialized training will help transform the market place making water efficient irrigation practices and irrigation system optimization the industry standard.

What topics are included in the training program?
The WSIP program includes topics such as:
  • Theory and municipal strategies;
  • Water conservation principles, products and solutions;
  • Water conserving products (controllers, sprinklers, nozzles and drip irrigation);
  • Soil and plant relationships;
  • WSIP Data Manager software training;
  • Conducting irrigation system assessments for water efficiency opportunities;
  • Presenting water saving opportunities to clients.
What is required to participate?
The WSIP program builds upon concepts taught in the Certified Landscape Irrigation Auditors (CLIA) Program. To be eligible for the WSIP program, applicant’s (company owners/managers) must:
  • Have a minimum of five Industrial, Commercial, and Institutional (ICI),multi-residential and/or residential clients located within the Region of Peel, York Region who are willing to participate in an irrigation assessment
  • Have access to a portable laptop/tablet for the purposes of this training and certification program, and in the field
  • Be willing to provide feedback to the Region of Peel, York Region and LO. Participants will be required to complete surveys and/or in-person interviews to gauge the program’s success.
Does the technician or the owner/manager hold the WSIP Certification designation?
The WSIP Certification designation is held jointly by the owner/manager of the company and technician. The WSIP designation is non-transferable if an employee changes employers, unless the new employer is already WSIP certified. Owners/managers whose sole WSIP technician departs must then submit an application for a new technician to maintain the WSIP designation.

What do I have to do to participate?
As WSIP Certification is held jointly by the employer (owner/manager) and the employee (technician).Both an owner/manager and an irrigation technician need to apply to become certified.  To participate, applicants must submit a completed online application form to LO (one per company).

Is there a cost to participate in the WSIP training and certification program?
Landscape Ontario offers the WSIP training at a cost recovery. The cost for the training in March 2022 is $650 plus HST per participant.

Once approved for the program, what do I need to do to provide to confirm my spot?
Upon receiving confirmation that your company has been approved for the WISP program, you will be required to send a copy of the following to hold your spot in the program:
  • Proof of WSIB Certificate of Clearance;
  • Proof of Auto Insurance;
  • Certificate of Liability
How do I prepare for the WSIP training and certification program?
Once approved, participants will be provided access the the WSIP Hub. WSIP participants are encouraged to download all resources and review the contents of the Study Manual prior to the training.  WSIP participants must have access to the material either as a digital or hard copy during the training.

What is the time commitment to become WSIP certified?
The WSIP program takes a total of 3 days over the span of a few weeks:
  • The training program will be completed over 2 full days;
  • The written test will be completed in a half day;
  • The validation assessment (a practical examination) will be completed in a half day at Landscape Ontario in Milton ON.
Who should apply to the WSIP Program?
Any irrigation company with an interest in becoming a member of a growing water smart irrigation community. 

Is there a recertification process for the WSIP program?
Yes. Every two years WSIP certified professionals are required to recertify to maintain WSIP certification.  Over the course of the two years, WSIP certified professionals are required to earn CEUs according to the requirements outlined on the Recertification page.

Why should I participate in the program?
This is an exciting opportunity to become a leader in the irrigation industry and to put your existing industry training to good use.  Participants of the WSIP program will undergo training in preparation for the season.  They will have exclusive opportunities to use methodologies taught during training, and access to an irrigation auditing tool to evaluate irrigation systems and make water efficient recommendations to clients. Clients undertaking recommended changes may be eligible for rebate opportunities which can increase business opportunities.

Participating companies will be advertised by the Regional and City partners as “Approved Contractors”.  Certification will remain valid for two years following successful completion of the WSIP Course and Certification.

Is this training and certification program recognized?
The WSIP Certification Program has been developed by LO under the same standards as existing certification programs.

Where will the WSIP training and certification program take place?
The training program will take place at Landscape Ontario Head Office (7856 Fifth Line S in Milton, ON) 

For further information, please contact:

Miles McVey
Education & Training Administrator
Landscape Ontario Horticultural Trades Association