Gardener in Toronto, Ontario
Have you been trying to update your garden, but don't know where to start? Did the plants you bought from Home Depot just wither in the summer sun? Or maybe that landscaping company you hired to do the patio put a number of “full sun” plants in your shady backyard.
My design practice, Tranquility Garden Design, focuses on achieving great results for small budgets. Many homeowners will spend tens of thousands of dollars on hardscaping, just to realized that they’ve bricked over their entire yard, and that sense of “tranquility” has disappeared. Why pave paradise, when you can achieve a stunning landscape just through plants alone?
Having worked in contemporary art for 15 years, I’ve got a keen eye for color, pattern, and line. I’ve also got the ability to see your property through new eyes. Beyond this aesthetic knowledge, I have also worked for several landscaping companies in Toronto doing garden maintenance and studied horticulture at Humber College.
Working with clients from North York, to the Danforth to Etobicoke and Pickering, I have seen a vast array of properties with all sorts of challenges and can accommodate a variety of budgets. I typically don’t do hardscaping, but I can advise clients on where to put a walkway, pergola, or water feature. I also advise clients on soil and lighting conditions that may be affecting the health of their plants. It is my goal to create landscapes that look great and age gracefully.
In terms of plant materials: I have a keen understanding of native plants and like to create welcoming environments for birds, bees, and butterflies and though native plants were my first love, I do have a deep appreciation for ornamental exotic plants, for the beauty they can bring in terms of their flowers and foliage.
In my gardens, I always aim to choose plants with a variety of textures, shapes, and sizes. Fragrance is also important as is fall and winter interest, so there’s something to enjoy outside of the "prime time" months of June, July, and August.
Working Process: The design process begins with a phone consultation, with a follow-up email containing samples of my previous designs and also a questionnaire to assess the client’s needs. Following this, I conduct a site visit to get the “lay of your landscape,” and understand the lighting conditions. The first round of the design involves a selection of plants from which the client can choose and after that selection is tweaked and finalized, we order the plants, which are delivered and installed by myself and my team. In terms of fees, I charge a flat design fee and an hourly labor fee. For the plant materials, it’s best if the client has an idea in mind of how much they would like to spend on plants, soil amendments, and other things such as irrigation. In any case, larger projects can be completed in phases to meet your budgetary needs.