It’s that time of year in Niagara, when landscaping dreams come true.
You know what we mean – it’s landscaping season, and Tree Amigos is having one of our busiest years ever!
That being said, we’re still not too busy to come check out your yard, to get your concept design proposal started. We can’t promise you a start date yet, but we’d love to come hear some of your ideas!
Like most homeowners, you have probably been dreaming of your landscaping changes for some time. If that’s the case, you may already have a pretty clear idea of what you want, which makes our Tree Amigos design team’s job pretty easy.
If you’re just beginning to think you need some changes, but aren’t sure what they might be yet, we can help by offering some tips. Our Tree Amigos landscape design team loves it when homeowners have a wish list, which might cover everything from the kind of deck or patio they want, to the kinds of shrubs they want planted in a border.
Today, our tips will cover the types of details you could add to your wish list that will assist our design team, as we’re coming up with a landscape renovation plan you’ll love.
Give some thought to financial needs and timing
While we love the “carte blanche” projects for yards on huge budgets, our Tree Amigos team is aware that not all projects are created equal! Some budgets are much smaller, and some projects are designed to be works in progress over months or even years, making it easier on the homeowner to budget. It’s a good idea to work with your financial institution to come up with a plan for your desired renovations, in a time frame you can live with. Having a basic financial plan in place before we arrive allows our design team to work within your budget from the get-go.
Research the options available for your chosen features
First, you need to decide on the features you want your dream yard to contain. Our Tree Amigos team recommends hitting the library, and checking out books and magazines on landscaping, using the Internet to research features and maintenance, go on some garden tours in your community, and ask friends and neighbours about their own landscaping renovations. Think about your needs for now and for the future, for example: Do you love entertaining? Do you enjoy swimming or desire a hot tub nearby? Do you need a play area for children now that can easily be removed later, or need a spacious shed to add storage? It’s also a good idea to keep a file of photos of yards with features you like, so we can see where your tastes lie.
Once you have your landscaping wish list of features (ex: deck, stone patio and pathways, outdoor kitchen, patio awning, new fence, pool, border garden update, outdoor lighting, privacy screening, etc.), visit a few garden and building centres and investigate square-foot pricing of your chosen materials. This is important; it will help you decide which features you can afford right now, and which ones you might leave until next season.
Are we adding greenery? Include it in your wish list!
There are a few things our Tree Amigos landscape design team should know if we are planning to add or update gardens as part of your project. First, do you have a green thumb? Knowing whether you are interested in gardening will help us choose the types of trees and plants for your dream space. We also need to be aware if you or anyone in your family is affected by plant allergies. We would avoid planting anything in your space that might cause you discomfort. We also want to know your favourite bulbs and perennials, and the colours you prefer. Having your garden wish list will help us choose the perfect additions for your landscape project. (Now is a great time to check out local garden centres, where there is always something new growing. You might even get a few new ideas!)
Plan for peace between neighbours
Before your project is designed, have a look at your yard to see where the best places for materials storage and access by Tree Amigos teams will be located. Likely, our access will impact your neighbours in some way. Invite your neighbours over to discuss your intentions, and come to an agreement regarding your project, especially if it will involve noisy equipment or the removal of a fence. Once our Tree Amigos design team has produced your concept design proposal, go back to your neighbours and go over the details and applicable dates. We hope they’ll be as excited about your project as you are!
Before you update or add any outdoor features that may require outdoor breakers or space on your electrical panel, you might want to call in an electrician. Find out if the project you have in mind for Tree Amigos will be possible as is, or whether your electrical panel will require an upgrade. While you’ve got access to an electrician anyhow, ask about adding power access where you need it for seasonal or outdoor lighting and decorating, too.
How about water?
If you are planning extensive garden borders, you will need to think about how you’ll water them. Do you have water connections where you need them, or will you need to renovate for outdoor water delivery, too? Think about your hose connection, the type of reel you prefer, and the location you’d like for storage.
Is minor demolition work required?
Perhaps you’ll be taking down a very old deck, patio, shed, or damaged fence. We can decide during the concept design proposal stage whether this work will be done by Tree Amigos, or by you and your own crew. We have found that easy demolition work, the kind not involving heavy equipment, is often better completed before our part of the project begins. The benefit is that if you remove it yourself, you don’t have to pay us to do it, and we can get started right away on your project!
There’s a lot to consider before your landscaping renovation actually begins. Our Tree Amigos family knows from experience that once you are ready, you’ll want it done yesterday! However, we also know that an investment of this magnitude is best made slowly, with careful planning for your family, your neighbours and your budget.
Once you have done your research, and you are ready with your wish list of features, materials, and greenery, that’s the best time to have us come by and meet you. We’ll discuss options, take photographs and measurements of existing features, and note the specifics of your landscaping wish list. Then, we’ll take some time to create your concept design proposal, using computer-assisted design to create “pictures” of our vision for your dream yard.
Once your concept design proposal has been OK’d by you, we’ll begin ordering materials and securing permits as required. Installation will, as always, be at your convenience.
It’s a long process, but before you know it, you’ll be entertaining guests in the yard of your dreams. As with most renovations, all the dust and disruption will soon seem like minor inconveniences, and just memories.
Before we get started, however, you have a little research to do!
We can’t wait to hear your ideas!
To meet with one of our planning experts and get the landscape renovation ball rolling, contact Tree Amigos at 905-937-5353. We’re ready to start your concept design proposal now!
Want to see more photos of recent Tree Amigos’ projects? Visit the Houzz app at http://www.houzz.com/canada-interior-design and put our name in the search bar. You’ll find photos of our landscaping design, stonework, water features, driveways, decks and much more. It’s a great place to see what other people have done, and what features they chose for their own dream yards!