Located in Queens, New York, this property sits in a neighborhood with older gardens full of curb appeal and plant envy. The owners want to elevate their property and plan to hire professionals to maintain the garden, once installed.
The backyard is fully paved with a drain in the middle. There is a small terrace out the kitchen without any cover. The yard receives a lot of sun and heat in the summer. Furthermore, there are three large AC units taking up centerstage right below the terrace, making the yard a noisy place to be. There is a large cost associated with relocating the AC units. Hence we have made two concepts, one keeping the AC units but masking them, and the other moving them to a better position.

Initially we take stock of the property as it currently is, annotating every important structure and plant.

We have to understand what conditions we are dealing with. I do a site visit and gather data and information. If needed, soil tests are taken.

For larger projects, we split it into smaller areas that we can address in various detail.

For a space to feel well-planned, we have to consider human wish-lines; how we like to move in a space. 

The concept design is a basic sketch ironing out the general idea. It tackles the challenges but also aims to fulfill other needs and wishes of the property owners.

When the initial concept is approved, we move into a more refined and detailed landscape plan.

Select areas may warrant an elevation drawing to clarify details of the plan.

Using Pinterest, I build shared mood boards that doubles as a source for plants but also for furniture and other garden assets.

Each area of focus may get its own mood board.

A plant diagram shows where the plants are intended to go.

A plant diagram is drawn for each area.

Each plant diagram has a corresponding plant list, complete with sources.

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