Although it had once been on a Parade of Homes tour, this Arts & Crafts
home's landscape needed some help. Our client was the second owner of the home, and felt it was lacking in some areas and out of control in others. The uninspired backyard included a small area of compacted gravel that was intended to function as the patio. Essentially we were being hired to design a complete makeover for the property.
As part of our site analysis, our first step was to determine which of the existing plants should stay and which ones were healthy and valuable enough to be transplanted. A welcoming bed of colorful perennials was added along the edge of the driveway to balance the large driveway visually. Prairie-type perennials and grasses including echinacea and Baptisia australis fit the Arts and Crafts style of the home.
While the sideyards were slightly finessed, the backyard required a complete do-over. First, the drainage issue of standing water in the spring and after storms had to be resolved. In conjunction with one of our landscape contractors, we designed an elaborate system of pre-fabbed French drains throughout the backyard. A new, larger patio was designed with separate dining and lounging areas. To enhance the feeling of an outdoor room, dry-stacked lannon stone (matching the stone on the home) frame the patio space, while a cedar pergola overhead offers our clients some reprieve from the sun. For easy maintenance, the main patio is colored concrete, but flagstone was used in the fire pit section of the patio, surrounding a custom, radial cut stone fire ring. Surrounding the patio is the same palette of prairie plants and other long-blooming perennials as was used in the front yard.
The home and new landscape now feel as one, and offer our busy clients a respite for themselves and their family.