Show Notes

Today, we discuss when it is a good time to hire a landscape designer for your yard and garden, and when a project is manageable to do it yourself.  Whether you are considering changes to lawn or garden, this episode is worth considering if you have a busy lifestyle and your time is valuable.

When to hire a designer

  • I come from DIY background
  • DIY – good for small projects, maintenance
    • Takes time
    • Can be haphazard
    • Can cause long term issues
  • Goal is beauty and less work
    • Many designers good at beauty
    • Many becoming better at low maintenance
  • What to consider about your yard projects
    • Do you know what you’re doing?
    • What scale is the design?
    • How substantial is the change?
    • Do you have existing beauty?
      • Is it comprehensive?
      • Is it cohesive?
    • Do you know the right timing for your project?
    • Do you have time to plan your project?
    • Do you have time to implement your project?
    • Do you just need a super quick spruce-up?
    • Do you lack design skills?
    • Are you aware of any permits and requirements for projects
  • Benefits of design
    • Cohesive
    • Updated, in style
    • Convenient

What to ensure

  • Clear, open, frequent communication
  • Clearly communicate expectations
  • Get clear on what you want from your yard
  • Openly discuss with family about what you all want, and don’t want
  • Discuss how to make the landscape as low maintenance as possible
  • They are the expert, and also the provider of service
    • You need to ensure you maximize their knowledge and your satisfaction by fully understanding and clarifying your needs
  • Touch base throughout design process
    • Provide feedback
    • Provide clarity
    • Acknowledge and encourage parts you like
    • Ask as many questions as needed to fully understand
  • Be present during installation
    • Be willing to ask if things don’t seem right
    • Make sure you let your providers do their work
  • After installation
    • Understand any establishment needs
    • Finalize payment
    • Leave a review or recommendation!

Links for today’s episode:

this is the aesthetic ecosystems podcast

I’m Ben Hale your virtual design guide

to help you and your family have a

healthy beautiful landscape with less

work what’s up and welcome to episode 16

of the aesthetic ecosystems podcast

today we are going to be talking about

when to hire a designer that’s right

guys when it comes to our landscape in

our projects sometimes it’s just best to

hire something out for multiple reasons

but of course sometimes you just want to

do things yourself too so we’re gonna

try and tease out when is for you you

know this is again different for each

person each individual situation each

property and each family so for you when

is it the right time to look for a

designer maybe for a consultation or for

full design work or design and

implementation work so today we’re gonna

go through basically a QA checklist of

things you can use to decide for your

landscape whether you should hire a

designer or not and and that’s really it

guys that’s what we’re gonna be talking

about today so the way I’m going to

break this out is is a little bit of

background and just to align us on what

our goals are again for for our

landscape and then all and then going

into what you can consider for your

projects and when is a designer right

for you so some of the questions you

should be asking yourself and then after

that if you’ve decided to hire a

designer what you need to do to make

sure you get the best out of working

with your designer and also maximize

their potential at the same time and and

how to make sure you have a good

situation a good relationship with your

designer and to get the most money’s

worth out of out of that that

relationship and and a little bonus at

the end for anybody who’s in Ohio I’ve

got a great resource for you as well so

with that let’s get into the topic today

so a little bit of background on on this

whole thing and a refocus on our goals

and so

first is is a background for me and and

where I’m coming from this might help

you understand things and it also might

help ground us with this whole

discussion so for me I grew up and I

still am and in many ways a

do-it-yourselfer I’m a person who likes

to you know slap on my boots go out

there throw on some split leather gloves

and get to work you know and do it

myself get dirty get some sweat out and

and have a good time at the same time

you know make at the end of the day

feeling like you actually did something

there’s something to be said about that

you know to to build things yourself to

look back see your accomplishments and

and feel good about it you know that’s

how I grew up that’s how my parents

raised me that’s what what my parents

are – most of the things in our house

the whole the whole house basically

needed rehabbed when I was growing up

and and so I was thrust into that

situation I was up on our roof shingling

at a ripe old age of probably I don’t

know it was I was like seven or eight

years old the first time I was up on the

roof and and now Child Services would

probably be knocking on people’s doors

if something like that happened but but

back then you know I I survived right

and my siblings survived and and I know

how to do roofs at an age of seven or

eight years old so yeah but that’s how I

grew up in and so there’s something to

be said and admired about doing it

yourself but at the same time sometimes

it’s it’s the most value for your life

for your time or for your family just to

just to have somebody come in and and do

the process the right way sometimes and

or the you know the easier way or the

time-saving way so there are multiple

reasons to hire a designer and and I all

admit back in the day not too distant

past I’ve you know I kind of turned my

nose up at people who have somebody come

in and and help with their landscape or

or their house or whatever is and you

know it’s a resourceful way to to do

things yourself but I’ve come to realize

sometimes our time is the most valuable

thing and that’s again with this you

know this podcast is really about its

just about landscapes it’s about time

and and having time to spend with your

family and the things you care about the

things you value and if something like

hiring a designer can free up the time

and the energy and the peace of mind for

you to do things that you care about in

your life then it’s totally worth it

and I’m saying totally worth it from the

standpoint of the monetary input you

require to do that as well as just the

you know being able to admit to yourself

that that somebody else has a better

skillset with this or a more appropriate

skill set with this and I’m going to

value their time to help me with this to

get it done properly to get it done

potentially faster or potentially better

and and that’s going to free me up to do

more valuable things with my life and

that’s what we were really talking about

here today so that background you know I

come from a do-it-yourselfer background

but I acknowledge now that there is

value in bringing some expert in to help

you for multiple reasons so that’s what

we’re gonna tease out today is is is

there a right reason for you to hire a

designer to come help you either design

your landscape consult with you on a few

things or potentially do the design and

installation so the whole you know the

whole whole nine yards and there are

even designers that have partnerships or

have a you know a crew that helps with

the maintenance the long-term

maintenance not only establishment phase

but the maintenance phase as well so

things to consider here as we go through

this process now I want to say you know

coming from a do-it-yourself background

I also acknowledge that there are

drawbacks to this and that’s kind of

what I’m getting at today is the other

side of the coin of the do-it-yourself

type attitude and they you know get it

done attitude is is doing it yourself

it’s good for small projects generally

you know doing it yourself can save a

lot of hassle actually if you just get

it done you know bang something out if

it’s something you can attain yourself

it’s a manageable size project for you

and maybe a few family members or a few

friends or a few neighbors to kind of

come together and get something done and

you know have some good camaraderie at

the same time there’s there’s certainly

something to be said about that

and you know I guess it’s the modern-day

barn raising if you think about that way

and DIY can be also be good for the

maintenance phase if it’s not too

overbearing and it’s something you can

do and something that actually connects

you with your landscape it might be

worth it to to do it yourself right but

on the flip side doing it yourself can

take time right it can take away

valuable time if this is time you’d

rather be spending doing something else

so something to consider there as well

as it doing it yourself especially when

you’re talking about your whole

landscape it can be a haphazard project

process excuse me

and so what I mean by this this is

actually the case of our landscape right

now is I haven’t sat down with our

landscape it’s kind of in a little bit

I’m ashamed to admit this but I guess

ashamed is a strong word but I’m a

little embarrassed that’s a better word

right embarrassed to admit that that I

haven’t sat down and fully designed a

comprehensive plan of our landscape yet

and it’s simply because I haven’t sat

down and focused on it but it’s it’s

something a part of the plans and I

definitely hope to share that with you

guys too because it’s a fun and exciting

process but but so as a result our

landscape is kind of like a haphazard

landscape there’s it’s just kind of been

slapped together there’s a few random

plants here and there that that probably

shouldn’t be where they are because it

hasn’t been properly planned and and I

was I’m definitely a victim of the the

clearance aisle plants sometimes like oh

this is a great plant I just need to

have this and then I actually have a

plan for where to put it and so it ends

up getting put in just kind of a random

spot so sorry to my wife Cory for this

if she’s listening you know this is kind

of how our landscape is right now and

and definitely the plan to make it

better so I’m I’m accounting on you guys

to hold me accountable to to plan our

landscape properly for the sake of my

wife and my family and my neighbors help

me out with that right okay so it can be

haphazard as my point there and at the

same time you can also by not fully

planning it or not having done it

properly you can actually lead to long

term issues in your landscape whether

these are maintenance issues or design

issues it can lead to long term problems

so that’s just something to consider


you’re doing it yourself is are you in

over your head basically or do you

really know what you’re doing and that’s

something to consider and it’s really

important okay now I want us to take a

bit of a step back and think big picture

about why we want to have a lower

maintenance landscape and remember again

if if this is your first episode maybe

you haven’t heard this but and I really

strongly recommend you go back and

listen to episode 1 of the podcast and

also if this is your first episode thank

you for listening and I’m really excited

you’re here this is awesome stuff to me

I’m really excited about this podcast

and sharing all of my knowledge with you

and I hope you come here to save time in

your landscaping and and that’s really

what it’s about here’s is is that your

landscape and your life when it comes to

both of those things your life is more

important than your landscape and being

out there and having to to sit there and

maintain it all the time and so what I’m

sharing on this show is tips and tricks

and tactics on how to save time in your

landscape so you can spend the important

parts of your life on what’s most

important to you and that time in your

life on what’s most important to you so

that’s what we’re really focusing on

here is we want beauty in our landscape

we still want to have a beautiful

landscape but we also want to have to be

able to spend less work on it so we’re

not talking about a botanical garden

here that we want in our yard where we

have to be out there every day managing

it maintaining it to keep it pretty and

attractive for when we come home from

work and want to have a little breath of

fresh air and a beautiful sight to look

at when we come home or when we have

guests over right so we still want that

beauty but we don’t want to be a slave

to our landscape where we’re working at

all the time and having to maintain it

and keep it proper so it looks right and

looks nice and so I want to just point

out that there are many designers that

are very good at designing beautiful

landscapes but they don’t always design

low maintenance landscapes with that

said though there there is a growing

population of designers out there that

do design beautiful low-maintenance

landscapes and that

our goal here so when we’re looking for

a designer I want to preface this whole

discussion now with we want to find try

and find a designer that is capable of

designing you a landscape that you don’t

have to be out there maintaining you

don’t have a ton of plants with disease

issues that you’re trying to fix and a

ton of just general issues that you have

to be out there working on or a lot of

pruning and mowing and all that stuff so

when we’re talking about hiring and

designer we’re talking about hiring a

designer that’s capable of producing a

low-maintenance landscape for you that

is beautiful and enjoyable at the same

time alright we’ve covered a good amount

of background now about first of all

where I come from and if you’re a

do-it-yourselfer hopefully you can

identify with that a little bit and if

not that’s perfectly fine too but I at

least want to give you guys the

perspective that even though I come from

that background I acknowledge that there

are times where it’s actually really

beneficial to have a designer coming in

and helping you and and also we’ve also

covered our goals right what’s our

overarching goal and that is to give us

more freedom in our life right and not

to have to be sitting you know sent

outside to take care of our landscape or

spend a bunch of money to maintain it

and that sort of thing so so those are

our goals now let’s get into how do we

choose whether or not to hire a designer

and and help focus us on on just making

that decision right I want to make that

decision very easy very as clear-cut as

possible for you so you’re not stressing

out whether or not you made the right

decision so let’s get into it here is

what to consider about your yard

projects and also I want to point out

that if you go over to the show notes

it’s basically you can print this out or

copy it and paste it as essentially a

checklist all right all of these

questions I’m talking about I’ve gotten

the show notes so you can go over there

you don’t have to be writing notes down

or whatever if you’re driving you know

just focus on your driving and you know

and generally speaking to guys just so

you know all the show notes have a basic

general outline of the the podcast so

for one you can scan it over and see if

it’s worth listening for you I totally

acknowledge that you know some podcasts

are worth listening to and I’m not going

to say every

single podcast is gonna be the most

value for you and if and I want to save

you guys time even in listening to this

podcast right so so if you want to scan

out the show notes and see which

podcasts are valuable to you each show

notes has a basic general outline of the

show and want to talk about and of

course the the whole show is in further

depth and so for today basically you can

go over to the show notes and get a

printable outline of the questions I’m

talking about here and and whether or

not to hire a designer for your

landscape and then also what

characteristics to look for in your

designer relationship okay so let’s get

into it first I want to say it when it

comes to considering your yard projects

do you know what you’re doing do you

actually know what to do with your

project how to plan it and then how do

you implement a design and and how to

establish a maintain your project if

these are if one or more of these things

are unknowns for you it might be worth

hiring a designer and if you feel pretty

comfortable with this stuff again a lot

of this is based on the scale which is

gonna be another question later is how

big of a project are you talking about

and how comfortable do you feel that if

this feels like an unknown or a big

thing you finding yourself digging

through a bunch of YouTube videos just

to learn some stuff it actually might be

worthwhile for you to go out and find a

designer instead to do some of this work

for you because they have the training

they have the experience and the

knowledge to to do some of this work

okay the next thing is what scale is the

design right we’ve just kind of talked

about this so how big is your design are

you talking about it you know a tiny

little garden plot right in front of

your your front of your house or around

your mailbox or is this a more extensive

design that we’re talking about where

we’re gonna be planning our whole front

yard or our whole back yard or we’re

dealing with an extensive issue maybe

you know you’re dealing with some root

issues that you want to design out of

your landscape some how are you dealing

with some drainage problems some some of

those issues can be more serious and

might require the help of a designer or

maybe even maybe even a landscape

architect to help deal with you know

some of the more serious issues where

you’re really doing some massive changes

to your landscape might

we require the help of a landscape

architect and that might be out of your

scope right because some of this has to

do with larger scale stuff that might

affect drainage and and all that sort of

stuff okay so what scale is the design

next piece is how substantial is the

change you know this kind of goes part

and parcel with the last piece of the

what scale

hey but there’s a slight subtle

difference here how substantial is the

change you know it could be a small

design but if you’re putting in it like

a massive retaining wall as part of that

design or you’re doing something that

might change the a drainage on your

property or something like that or

planting some trees that really are

going to change how your property is

perceived in the next you know 10 years

or something it might be a substantial

change that you really want to have some

professional opinions on so so again if

you’re talking about a major change it

might be good to have some of that

perspective okay next do we have

existing beauty on our landscape so do

we already have a pretty good design and

we’re just kind of looking to spruce

things up and maybe this is something

you feel pretty comfortable with doing

it yourself you know maybe it’s just the

addition or removal of a few plants that

might make a big difference or you know

kind of sprucing things up with some

hard scape elements that are pretty

pretty capable of handling on your own

scale so let’s say you do have an

existing beautiful space whatever space

you’re considering whether it’s a part

of your yard or the whole yard the the

part I want to say about that too is is

the design piece comprehensive so does

it does it go through the whole design

or do you have kind of hodgepodge

elements in your design whether again

we’re talking about a garden or the

whole landscape here so so does it look

like it is is fully designed or do you

just kind of have a few hodgepodge

pieces put together and along with that

– is it cohesive does it feel like it

all fits together

so is it comprehensive and cohesive do

you just have like specific parts that

are well designed or you know parts that

are beautiful or do you have a good

cohesive and comprehensive Beauty going

throughout your design and that’s again

with your

whole landscape you’re talking about as

well as the specific garden you’re

talking about and there’s good ways to

figure out having a good cohesive design

where it feels like a unified space it

feels like a fluid space and it really

has its own unique character to it so

that’s important when you’re talking

about your existing beauty okay moving

on do you know the right timing for your

projects you know it’s really important

too to get the timing right where you’re

planting it the best times you’re

dealing with your or you’re avoiding

potential weed issues popping up it with

the way you implement your design is the

timing of planting your design and at

the same time that you’re also giving

the best chance for your plants to

succeed so that’s really important next

do you have time to plan the project so

a good project does take time to plan it

out to articulate what you want for one

thing and to put it into practice so put

it into a cohesive design that is is

well articulated and then also carried

out and so that planning piece that does

take a significant amount of time to

avoid the right issue so if you don’t

have the time it might be worth the

investment to hire an expert to do that

for you and to do it in a way where you

can feel more confident in the the

outcome so the time is important piece

as we’ve touched on a lot here and same

with that do you have time to implement

your project so the actual

implementation of your project requires

a significant amount of time too and if

this is something you enjoy it might not

be that difficult but it could take away

from a lot of family activities you know

say it takes a weekend what if you spent

that weekend camping with your family or

catching up with old friends or visiting

distant relatives things like that that

could be better parts or better time

that you spend instead of working on

your landscape so do you just need a

super quick spruce up with your

landscape so maybe you’re trying to

increase the curb appeal maybe you’re

trying to sell your house right

sometimes this is something if you feel

comfortable you can do it yourself but

you can also hire a designer to do this

to say you know you you approach your

designer and say

look I just want to you know really make

my yard pop just do a few things that’s

you know not a overhaul of my landscape

something low-cost that you can you can

design quickly that can last more than

you know just the season and but it

really you know spruces up the curb

appeal of my house helps it sell and

maybe even increases the value of what I

get out of it so that’s something you

can think about either for yourself or

for a designer and so sometimes a quick

spruce up of your landscape can really

make a big difference and it’s worth it

the next do you lack design skills some

people you know I totally get it our

design illiterate either they can’t you

know can’t perceive what something on

paper looks like when you put it in your

landscape or they can’t go through the

design process and that’s totally okay

there’s nothing wrong with that but at

the same time it’s totally worth

acknowledging that some people are

really good at design for example I when

it comes to graphic design I am totally

graphically designed illiterate and this

goes to doubt all the way down to the

clothes I wear and so I have to you know

talk to Cory my wife about okay does

this look okay or not you know and and

she has to give me sometimes the real

wake-up call and you know say hey you

know I’ll admit though my older brother

wears taper or used to wear tapered

jeans that’s never been a thing of mine

so I have two older brothers and I’m not

gonna clarify which ones which but um

you know I’ve never at least made that

much of a fashion design faux pas

but um get back on topic here my one of

my brothers is a graphic design major

and and kudos to him he actually

designed me a beautiful logo that’s the

current logo if you look on the screen

of your your podcast player there you’ll

actually see the design logo that he

designed which is awesome and and so

thanks Tim for the design and the design

I had before that I made in PowerPoint

and and now that I looked back at I mean

to be fair I made it in about like ten

minutes when I was trying to launch my

brand and it was something I did super

quick but just the

our scheme was totally off the design

itself was totally off and and I was I

am graphic design illiterate so

sometimes just like just like that you

know it’s totally worth having somebody

to come in and coach you on your

landscape and and that’s something

that’s totally okay because some of us

are skilled at some things in other rows

of us are skilled at other things and

that’s fine

okay so that wraps up basically the the

QA checklist I have for you to reflect

on for yourself and as weather as to

whether or not you should have a

designer come in and help you with your

landscape weather again it’s part of the

design process or part of the

implementation process or both or even

just some consultation and so important

things to consider there and with that

guys I do want to put a plug in here you

can go over to aesthetic ecosystems comm

slash consulting to get a digital

consultation with me right now I’m this

isn’t going to be something that I’m

offering forever but right now I am

offering one-on-one virtual

consultations with your landscape and if

you have any questions you know that I

have some flexible options there to

consider and so something for you to

consider if you just need a quick chat

or consultation or even more in-depth

chat and consultation there’s a few

options there for you to check out so

aesthetic ecosystems comm slash

consulting and you can check out the

link in the show notes as well ok enough

plugs for me let’s get moving on so some

of the benefits of design is that a good

design is cohesive so it feels like a

unified space so if you think about

let’s see think about ok Washington DC

right for for you Americans out there a

lot of you non Americans when you look

at you know a picture of the US Capitol

you see the big wide expanse of the gosh

I I’m I’m blanking on the the terms I

guess it’s the Capitol lawn right and

then those big reflection pools out

front – well that design was planned

that way – to give a feeling of power

and legitimacy when the US government

was still trying to establish itself as

a legitimate nation in the early phases

of the

United States and and that feeling was

deliberate to make it look expensive to

make it look like the you know the Royal

European nations that had these

wonderful beautiful expansive designs

that are very formal and geometrically

designed and so a good cohesive design

can actually convey a feeling or a get

you thoughtful or it can it can actually

invoke something I guess is what I’m

getting at here I guess I guess I’m

going too long guys because I’m starting

to become at a loss for words so I’ll

wrap up here soon

so a good cohesive design is important

and also a designer can actually you

know make something feel updated or in

style you know what was popular in the

popular or even appealing today so

that’s something where a designer can

really help you have the right style or

or maybe you want to have a specific

style or a unique style they can really

help you with that and a lot of

designers are very well-versed in

various forms of style and next it’s

just convenient sometimes right

sometimes the convenience is worth the

expense let’s be honest so there is an

additional expense when you’re hiring a

designer for for any level of

consultation or help or design work but

sometimes the convenience or the peace

of mind or the time you get back for

your life is well worth the expense so

again this is talking about your time

which is more unlimited than sometimes

your expenses in your life so it’s just

something to consider there so let’s say

you’ve actually decided to hire a

designer what do you do what do you do

to ensure a good relationship that you

get the most out of it and that you’re

happy with the end result so I want to

just go through some things here to help

you figure that out and I want to

preface this discussion with the

whatever what are the motivations of

your designer right so understanding

what motivates your designer can be very

helpful you know they don’t just want to

most designers I’ll be honest some some

might be not so great but most designers

they actually want you to be happy they

want you to be to have a good result

because most designers

one they want your repeat business so

even though you’re designing one part

you might be of your landscape you might

be coming back for a future help or

after your designs been implemented for

a few years you might want to spruce it

up or there might be an issue that is

arise or something that’s changed and

they’ll want you to come back to them

saying hey you did a great job we need

help with this piece next and can you

come help us in addition most designers

the word-of-mouth references are the

most important means of business for

them and so they want you to be happy

enough to tell your neighbors and

friends and everybody you know about how

good of a job they did so with that said

what do you need to do to ensure a good

relationship well first and and foremost

is clear open and frequent communication

so you want to be as clear and concise

with your communication as possible and

also to communicate your expectations so

you might have a certain expectation and

sometimes I’ll be honest is very hard

for us as clients to to communicate or

to vocalize what our expectation is and

so it’s it’s part of the discussion

process of the designer to help

understand and maybe even tease out what

you’re thinking and unfortunately not

all designers you know offer of course

we can’t all read a crystal ball right

for ourselves and the designers can

sometimes have a hard time understanding

what you want and so the more you have a

chance to discuss your goals the more

likely you both will be able to

understand what it is you want and to

implement that in your designer to make

sure it’s carried out through the design

process and so it’s really important for

you to get clear on what you want from

your yard and then once you get clear on

that how to convey that to your designer

as well likewise this is a family

process so openly discuss with your

family about what you want and also what

you don’t want and this is personally

for you what you want and also to

understand from your family what they

want so what for example what your kids


the landscape might be incredibly

important and making sure they want to

go outside and play right or they want

to get outside and work with you on the

landscape in a way that’s healthy and

what your spouse wants from the

landscape as well so what do they want

to feel what do they want to get

involved with how do they want to

experience things those are something

new they want as part of the landscape

and so involving the whole family as

part of the landscape is very important

likewise when I say part of the family

let’s face it a lot of times our pets

are a family member too so what does

your pet want out of the landscape is

there something that can enhance their

experience with your landscape if

they’re an outdoor pet so something to

consider there and next make sure you

discuss how to make the landscape as

low-maintenance as possible this is very

very important because a designer might

come in and design a beautiful landscape

that’s so amazing maybe even from day

one but if it’s not a low-maintenance

landscape it’s gonna become quickly

become a burden it might be very costly

to hire somebody to maintain it or it

might be very costly in time for you to

maintain it and it might cause a lot of

just problems and stress and burden in

the future so so really make sure how to

make a low-maintenance landscape for you

and and find the right designer to to

really insure that so the next piece is

to understand that the designer is the

expert here right we’re hiring somebody

for their knowledge their experience and

their skill set and and at the same time

though they’re also the provider of a

service and so because they’re the

provider of a service – you need to

ensure that you maximize their knowledge

but also your satisfaction by fully

understanding your needs and also

clarifying your needs at the same time

so this goes back to the communication

piece I was talking about earlier is

remember that this person has a unique

skill set that you may not have and

because of that it’s really important to

get clear on what you want and what they

can offer to match that up as best

possible – to get the best value out of

you’re working on here the next piece

again you guys will see a very

consistent theme of communication here

is to make sure you touch base

throughout the whole design process make

sure you’re providing feedback and this

is okay even if it’s feedback that you

don’t like you can do it in a very

appropriate way you don’t have to be

rude about it but to provide feedback of

you know what I appreciate what you’re

doing here but but this I don’t like or

this I’m not a huge fan of or you know

I’m not really feeling this designer I’m

having a hard time visualizing whether I

would like this this is all appropriate

feedback and to say you know here’s

here’s some stuff I found that I like

can we make this low-maintenance and you

know to provide some visual examples if

you’re having a hard time articulating

what you want so finding it’s taking the

effort on your part to go find something

you like or examples of certain things

you like put together like a mood board

right a virtual mood board or even a

physical one and you know these are the

colors I like these are some design cues

that I like here’s some feelings that I

enjoy and again we’re talking about the

whole family here and and trying to

really tease out with your designer what

you want and and articulate that as best

possible so providing feedback is okay

and this is throughout the whole design

process so if you really not feeling

something it’s better to rewind and

redesign as opposed to put something in

that’s very hard to change and after

it’s put in so with that make sure

you’re providing clarity and also

acknowledging encouraging parts you like

let me say that again acknowledging and

encouraging parts that you like so if

they’re you know you’re not totally sold

on a landscape design proposal let’s say

but there is certain parts you like

maybe your designer can then take what

the parts that you like and expand it

further or further enhance it to really

make it a design that just pops for you

that feels right and feels great and and

you know that’s what we want here again

the last thing I want to say with

touching base throughout the design

process is asking as many questions as


fully understand so it’s totally okay

for you to question either the process

or what they’re doing or how they’re

doing it for you to fully understand so

think of this is what pops in my head

here is if you’re in hospital right it’s

the more questions you ask the more

fully understand things the more options

you potentially have and and the more

clear you can be and confident you can

be in what’s being done and so the same

goes here the the better you understand

the process and what’s being done the

more confident you can feel that

comfortable you can feel and also the

more you can provide feedback along the

way to ensure a happy and and caring and

thoughtful result I guess so let’s move

on then okay the next piece so let’s say

you’ve got a design you’re happy with or

at least you think you’re happy with

now what happens next well the

installation process and I’m assuming

here that you’re having the installation

done you’re by somebody right so the

first thing with the installation

process is do your best to be present

during the installation as much as

possible and the reason for this is is

if there’s something that’s going on

that you don’t feel is right then you

can be present you can talk about it and

you can do it in a way where hopefully

nobody gets upset and it takes me and

gets taken care of as quickly as

possible as early as possible because

again the later it’s caught the more

difficult it is to change something and

so be willing to ask if things just

don’t feel right so you have to be able

to ask questions and likewise make sure

you let your providers do their work

so if you’re just curious you know how

what does this lever do on the mini

excavator that you have you know that

can really be disruptive to the whole

work process of your the people that are

coming in to help you install this

landscape so so make sure it’s the right

questions right so if you’re concerned

about what somebody’s doing or how

they’re doing it and it doesn’t just

just doesn’t seem right that’s okay but

if you’re just curious you know maybe

it’s better to ask that afterward or

later on like here’s was something

they’re doing or how they do it

that doesn’t really affect the design so

so make sure you let them do their work

when they can or they need to unless

it’s something you’re concerned about

potentially or you really want to

clarify so that’s what I want to tease

out there the next piece is after the

installation process understand any

establishment establishment needs so

what do I need to do to make sure that

these plants get properly established is

there any erosion stuff that I need to

be concerned about things like that that

you know the early establishment phase

is very important for the success of

plants and also the success of design

for soil health and that sort of thing

as well so it’s important to understand

what those needs might be because they

might assume something that you know

that you might not know actually so it’s

really important to understand that the

next piece of course is to finalize the

payment make sure your designer is happy

your installer is happy and that you’re

happy as well that you guys have already

been clear on what payments situation

goes on and to just get that wrapped up

so it’s taken care of and last this is

very valuable if especially if you’re

happy to leave a review or a

recommendation for these people whether

they have their own website or

potentially like Angie little Angie’s

List or or something like that

if there’s a way to leave a review for

this person especially if you’re

satisfied with their work it can be very

beneficial for their business they will

greatly appreciate it and it’s it’s very

helpful likewise if you’re if you just

say over the top happy with what they’ve

done sometimes

a testimonial that they can put on their

website is incredibly valuable for them

so you can actually leave like a you

know just contact them first and say

would you is this something you would

like and you can actually like record a

short video if you’re comfortable with

that or you know provide a short blurb a

few sentences of your satisfaction with

them in whatever way and it’s sometimes

that feedback is incredibly beneficial

for them in their business so I’m sure

they’d greatly appreciate it so

something to think about there

of leaving a review or a recommendation

for them is something that’s great okay


that’s what I have today as far as

choosing a designer and making sure

you’re happy with the whole design

process if you’ve if you’ve made that

choice and so the last piece I want to

say here is for you lucky people that

are from the great state of Ohio or they

live closeby

what I’ve done is is I’ve put together a

resource by doing a collaborative

exercise with a lot of the top luminous

designers in Ohio and they’ve come

together provided a great resource on

the top luminance plants that they use

in their designs and so this is trees

and shrubs there’s a few trees and

shrubs but but mostly what they’ve

provided is a ton of plants that can go

into smaller garden designs as well as

grasses that you can use in your designs

as well and and this is a great resource

that they’ve provided but what I’ve also

done is is shared the participating

designers so these are some of the top

designers across Ohio for low

maintenance landscapes and if you’d like

to get in touch with any of them today

I’ve provided a link within the show

notes where you can get in touch I have

their contact information there and for

those of them that have websites I also

have their their websites as well so you

can go check them out and so go over to

the show notes

check out the Ohio designers as well as

any other information that you might

want to refer to today and last if you

haven’t considered leaving a review for

the podcast just like reviews are great

for these designers too to leave reviews

on their websites I greatly appreciate

it if you like this show

– go ahead over to iTunes and leave a

review so I want to share a review

that’s already on iTunes from and so for

those of you who have left overview I

also want to say thank you very much

your reviews have been incredibly

helpful and and these reviews are

helpful for for new people that are

considering listening to the show it

helps them click on that first episode

and come check it out okay so I have a

review from ditch dollar sign or maybe

that’s maybe that’s six and zix says by

the way I love the user names that I’ve

seen on on iTunes so far and for those

of you who don’t know that

you have to leave this short nickname

and it has to be a unique nickname that

hasn’t been used before so what it’s led

to is some pretty cool creativity from

from some of the reviewers so so thank

you also for making me chuckle reviewers

but this is from zix and zix says great

information tips and tricks love the

talk on soil chemistry so thank you for

leaving a review and for those of you

who also have left a review thank you

very much and with that guys also thanks

for tuning in and make sure you live

with passion and make tomorrow better

than today