Landscape Design Concepts - "Designing your inside out" Landscape Design Concepts - Service for Designing your Inside Out
Native and Conservation
and GIS/GPS Mapping
Hand and Digital
Landscape design for a residence is most often a Master Plan that includes an overview of the land bounded by your property lines. Key areas of interest are the focus of attention. I include your priorities based on your intended use as well as my ideas for those areas. So there is a preliminary meeting where your intended uses are discussed as well as views and screenings. The follow-up meeting allows us to review my concept(s) and agree on a final plan. This plan includes hardscape elements, such as patios, walkways and walls as well as a preliminary planting plan. The Planting Plan will indicate "mixed perennial" beds (shrubs, perennials, and occasionally annuals) as well as trees.
Depending upon your physical location within a municipality, there are often regulations specifying plant materials that are "native" to your area. This is a topic that has more depth than this brief summary can include. The purpose is to avoid "non-natives" and invasives from getting established. There are companies that specialize in supplying "native" plant material that can include "conservation" plantings. There are many non-natives that are not invasive. My preference is for meadow plantings using native plant material.
The final product is a detailed planting plan providing genus and specie, quantity counts, and locations of all materials recommended for your project. Soil amendments are included, if necessary.
There are several levels of Site Analysis.
* Stormwater management recommendations - including long and short term errosion control measures tailored for your property. This can include such measures as surface and ground water storage (detention) practices that can include Rain Garden location, size, and appropriate plant material. Conveyance of runoff within day-lighted swales is almost always included. Jurisdictional regulations are often considered, such as within the Adirondack Park or within specified distances of a water body, such as a stream or a lake.
* Soil evaluation and amendments- always includes a sample test to a test lab facility for a detailed chemical profile. This is useful in determining the necessary amendments for growing success. The sample is compared to the USDA soil profile.
* A general existing plant inventory- from existing trees to shrubs and perennial ground covers, we make an assessment of your existing plant material and provide a full maintenance plan.
* Maintenance Plan- this is a full plant bed by plant bed detailed recommendation for your woody or perennial plants. It will tell you when and how much to mulch, weed, thin and prune your plants in order to get the most out of your property.
* Topographical evaluation- includes gradient measures and terracing recommendations.
Water near or at the surface will affect plant material and other uses to varying degrees. In some cases, these areas must be "delineated" or marked with tape so as to be avoided. I have this capability and can map its outlines using GIS and GPS technology.
GIS and GPS Mapping
There are projects that require the mapping of trails and roads or delineating an area for a particular use or avoidance of use, not to be confused with a legal survey. The edge of an area or center line of a trail or road can be shown overlaid on a downloadable satellite (aerial view) of the property. If necessary, a surveyor can use this information for a precise layout of a feature
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A popular design element for personal outdoor spaces is a water feature. These range in scale from water falls to ponds of all sizes. The sound of moving water is comforting and can be used to over power unwanted noise. Maintenance must be discussed and understood.
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A plan view, that is looking down on the line work of all elements within your property lines, are difficult to read unless you are accustomed to viewing this type of drawing. Whereas perspective views and birds eye views are more readily readable. I provide whatever view or combination of views necessary to convey the design intent.
Charles T. Spinella, RLA, ASLA firstname.lastname@example.org Phone: 518-338-7192
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