Tuesday, February 12, 2019

2018 Project Highlights

Happy new year to gardeners, and all those who love gardens.  We always take a moment during the cold and wet winter to put together a blog post reviewing some of the previous year's projects.  The photos shared here are by no means exhaustive, but show some of the highlights of 2018.  Thank you to all of our new homeowners, as well as those homeowners who we see every year or two to continue to expand on and improve their gardens!

The projects shared are more or less in chronological order from early spring to later fall 2018.

We begin with the completion of a two year project.  This project completely transformed an urban backyard with new fences, shed, deck, pergola, patio, wall, and two water features.
Fountains are up and running: Overflowing Urn with Wall of Water Fountain create the relaxing sounds of flowing water.

The Wall of Water makes efficient use of a fence to add a water feature to this urban garden.

A built in bench with planters on the deck pair with the local quartzite wall to create a serene gathering space around the overflowing urn.  An overflowing urn is a great water feature to add to a front entrance or smaller garden where space is limited.

BEFORE: It was time to refreshen this patio.
AFTER: Bluestone graced a new patio and to add more elegance we covered the concrete steps with bluestone as well.  This relatively simple upgrade polished this great little nook.

Hamden, Baltimore is on a hill, and many of the home entrances feature steep banks, often covered with ivy.  Terraces or retaining walls is a great way to create a level garden.  A native plant garden attracts local pollinators, monarch butterflies, and is visual delight.
BEFORE:  Too much green!  This garden had an overwhelming amount of pachysandra with straggly shrubs and little visual interest.

AFTER: Drift roses, Catmint and Lavender now create color and texture, brightening the garden.
BEFORE: This shabby bank held together with rotten railroad ties retained the driveway.
AFTER: Two timber terraces create a clean outline for the driveway and a new garden bed.
Around the side of the same home, a new set of timber steps, filled in with river gravel curve around the home.
BEFORE (during): Demo begins on the existing front porch.  It was sinking in the middle, it had outdated terra-cotta tiles and needed some railings.

AFTER: White vinyl railings and quartzite flagstone makes this porch unrecognizable.
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Another view of the front porch. Quartzite flagstone is a great choice to brighten a shady space.  It is also very hard, durable stone.
BEFORE: The steps jutted out awkwardly into the garden.  We designed a reroute to use the little used space to the left. 

AFTER: The new steps now effectively use a previously unused space, allowing for a large patio and convenient grill area. A landing and turn allows a more comfortable climb or descent.  Trex decking and railings are a great low maintenance option for remodeling decks.
BEFORE: These two porches were definitely the original ones, as we discovered concrete blocks rather than brick behind them. This unwelcoming garden needed a radical change.
AFTER: A spacious bluestone patio, sitting wall, and pergola begin the process of allowing this garden to reach its potential. Two retractable shade canopy allow a passing shower not to ruin a summer BBQ.
A fire pit patio with decorative and functional drainage gully, further develops this great garden.
BEFORE: This garden had not seen an upgrade in years.
AFTER: We removed the unused parking pad next to the garage to create a more spacious garden with a better flow.  This allowed ample room for the fire pit patio as well as a more green space.  
BEFORE: While ivy is an effective ground cover, it has a tendency to climb and strangle trees, as well as be susceptible to plant diseases which render it very unsightly.  Additionally this slope was very steep and difficult to manage.
AFTER: A small retaining wall gives a crisp definition to the slope as well as providing a less steep gardening space.
BEFORE:  Several stages of decking add ons had outlived their use and were preparing to rot away.

AFTER: The new design reused the existing bricks and new bluestone to create a ground level patio with a set of masonry steps.  The new patio visually created a larger space.

A new composite deck replaced an oversized wooden deck as a first step in creating a new outdoor living space.
Trex decking and railings are a great low maintenance option.

Thank you again to al those homeowners who have entrusted their gardens and outdoor spaces to Seven Winds.  We look forward to another year, bringing new beauty and function to familiar gardens, and creating new ones!