I just finished a project I had been working on up in Broken Top last week. It was a "remodel" of the existing landscape, filling in with more colorful and seasonal interest plants (deer resistant as well!). We had started the design phase during the winter for the entire property and the clients were just wonderful to work with.
About three months ago, they called me up to say that they would be out of town for about two months and if I could manage the installation of the plan for the front of the property. "Of course" I said, that is part of the service I offer to my clients. Plus, after all my work designing the plan, I like to make sure it's installed right.
Problem was that early summer is about the busiest time of year for the installers. I was able to get one of my preferred guys - Brad Reiter of Earthlogic Landscapes - to install the big evergreen trees:
He was (is) awesome and the clients were super happy with the photos I sent them of the progress. They were so happy they told me to continue and fill in with the perennials (they initially wanted to just put in the evergreens and see how that looked before anything else was planted).
"No problem" I told them. Well, by this point, I was running out of time considering I had to order the plants and the clients were coming back soon. So....
"Wait, isn't that you?!?" you say. Well yes, that is me.
"But you're a design/consult only business?" Well, yes, you're right.
But, if there's a job to be done, I do what it takes to make sure it's done, and done right. And who better to do it right? Yep, me.
I actually really enjoyed getting physical and dirty again. I used to do design, installation and maintenance back in my younger days and I totally loved it. Now that I'm older (but thank you, I know I don't look like it) and have a family, design only works out much better. Plus, I really enjoy totally focusing on just one thing and going as far as I can with it. Plus there is just so much you can do with design. Each project has totally new parameters, new opportunities and possibilities, I love it!
Here are some before and afters of the job:
The client did this, and yes, I did admonish him for buying the Pom Pom Spruce from Costco. If you can't tell, they didn't make it:
I did this:
This is what you see at the end of the driveway before. Yes, overused Mugo Pine and a scraggly Burning Bush.
What an improvement! I love the way the Weeping Blue Atlas Cedar picks up the blue in the rock wall. The ground cover is Lydia Broom which just finished flowering. It flowers a lovely yellow and will look stunning next to the blue of the cedar.
Previous view along the driveway:
New view. I designed a low formal Barberry hedge for the front of the bed, Buttercup Iris's that will bloom yellow and white earlier in the season, Daisies and Caryopteris to fill in for the summer and fall, and Karl Foerster grasses to add that extra element of movement and seasonal interest (I don't cut grasses until spring).
Now, you remember that the client was out of town for most of this project? I was finishing the planting when he drove up (in a strikingly beautiful ocean blue convertible jaguar - so hard not to love this client) and one of the first things he said to me, face beaming: "This is exactly what I wanted."
No better ending to a good story than that.