Baby, it’s cold outside—and we’re thinking about warmer times ahead! According to David Munsey, III, of Better Lawns & Garden, winter is a good time to be planning for future landscape projects. Here, he shares a preliminary drawing for one of his recent projects as well as a little insight into the process, timelines, and steps you can expect if you’re ready to take your outdoor living space to the next level.
At Home in Arkansas: What is the process that leads up to a drawing like this, and how would you recommend getting started?
David Munsey, III: After a phone call to get an idea of what the client wants to accomplish, we’ll have our first face-to-face meeting. That’s when we’ll walk the property, talking through their vision and how they want to use the space. After that, we’ll do a site analysis where we take measurements and some pictures. We usually exchange some inspiration pictures that have ideas for everything from plant materials to color palettes, then that’s when we’re able to do a conceptual sketch like this. It’s not totally to scale, but it gives you a vision of what the space is intended to look like.
AHIA: What comes next in the process?
DM: From there, we’ll tweak things. We sit down with the client and talk through everything—the shape of the pool, the shape of that patio, height of the chimney, all those decisions, depending on the scope of the project. Once we start nailing down those final choices, we present a construction drawing that is more detailed and to scale. With that in hand, then we’ll bring to the table material samples— pavers, tiles, paint colors—anything that needs a selection approval made.
AHIA: Is there an ideal time of year to start a landscape project?
DM: There are advantages to different times. December or January is a great time to start a larger-scale project because you’ll end up planting beds right at the start of spring, which is a great time to plant. May and June is a great time to start a construction project that involves something like hardscaping, but it’s a terrible time to plant—but that’s OK because if you’re wrapping in the fall, that’s a good time to add your plantings. Depending on the time of year that’s best for you to get started, we can always go ahead and set up the beds and plant evergreens, shrubs, and trees, and come back to add perennials or color later.
AHIA: What can homeowners do to prepare for the project and help it go smoothly?
DM: If you have a survey of your land, that’s always helpful to have on hand. Definitely get started gathering some inspiration photos on Pinterest or Houzz, or even just have some you can email us. That helps us see what style you have in mind. Other than that, just enjoy the process. Your landscaping is something that if you’re going to do it, you only want to do it once—you want to do it right and really enjoy it. You don’t want to rush it. Know that the process takes time, and in the end, it’s a space you’re going to really love.
Contact Better Lawns & Gardens at 501.454.9803 or visit betterlawnsar.com.