When designing for clients, I always ask specific questions about maintenance first. The most beautifully designed and planted gardens can fall apart after a year or two if maintenance isn’t performed correctly or at the right time. I address maintenance for all of the gardens that I design in the following forms:
- Performing the maintenance work for you (usually on a seasonal basis with 4 visits per year)
- Coaching you or your gardeners / laborers for a season or two about caring for the new plants
- A written maintenance plan that contains specific instructions for what to do and when
- Creating a planting design that fits the existing maintenance regime you have / intend to have
I also perform seasonal maintenance for CA native / drought tolerant gardens in the East Bay that I haven’t designed. I charge an hourly rate for fine gardening services including, aesthetic / hand pruning of small trees and shrubs, perennial management, invasive species / weed identification and eradication approaches, irrigation audit and adjustment. I pride myself in utilizing practices that are good for the long term health of your plants, your soil and our planet. I stay current on integrated soil and pest management practices. These techniques allow for virtually 0 chemicals to be used in your yard while keeping your gardens in excellent health.
I am always happy to work toward the goal of phasing my maintenance services out by teaching my clients and their gardeners how to care for the plants in their yards. The most successful gardens are those that the homeowner or gardener frequents.