The after pictures (to view them larger, please click on the picture):

This is the drawn up plan with the list of plants and where it goes in the design.

Design Briefs:

From Bland to Beautiful

By Allan Hull

Peninsula Hardwood Mulch, Inc.

"Don't Compare Prices, Compare ​Quality and Service"

Knowledge and experience are your best resources when it comes to landscaping your home. Who has this resource you ask? Why, you do. And, you can find me at Peninsula Hardwood Mulch and of course the materials.

What will I do for you? Simply provide you an interesting landscape design, based on your likes and desires, adapted to your site characteristics. A design is a site plan or diagram that will provide you with all the instructions necessary to transform your ordinary yard into a beautiful garden. I select every plant to provide specific results. I make it my mission to solve your site problems and give you all the features your landscape can handle, all while keeping maintenance to a minimum. Bear in mind there is no such thing as no maintenance.


In this design I am presenting to you, the customer had several desires to incorporate. For example; having come from a western state where xeriscaping (desert or without water) is prevalent, she liked native plants as they tend to survive better (but was not limited to this category) and no lawn. She has an affinity for ornamental grasses, one variety in particular. She wanted mostly evergreens, enjoys a little Japanese influence, likes variegated plants, lavender and cooking with herbs. She likes unusual plants, all colors, but no thorns. She wanted both some mass impact and also diversity. She had existing overgrown plants to be removed. She tends to prefer organic solutions and does not use chemicals such as weed killers. Some plants in the existing landscape could be salvaged, and she planned to do the work herself. When looking at the 'after' pictures, realize they have only been in the ground about 2-3 months.


Having taken some rough measurements and numerous pictures, I then plotted the stationary features on paper. These would be things like the house or buildings, driveways, sidewalks, fences, utilities of any type, and existing trees or shrubs which will remain in the landscape. Then I list as many plants that would fit her criteria and are good performers to select  from. Then next step is drawing in the bed lines. Sometimes I have specific plants I want to use somewhere and place it before the bed lines. In this plan the beds are separated by paths rather than lawn. The path materials consist of flagstone, stone dust and Curve-Rite edging for low maintenance.


At this point I select the key plants and locate them first. Then I select plants to be backdrops or features, screens or specimens. I subscribe to the notion that every plant can be a 'star on stage' in its respective season, if properly placed and often when supported by other plants (seeking contrast and compliment). There is something blooming in all seasons here. Your eyes are drawn throughout the landscape and the path leads you to view each accent up close. As this plan is diverse, I will not review each plant here now as I do when I present the plan, but you can view some of the before and after photos and see why her hard work has paid off so quickly. Also I will provide you with a plant list so you can Google the plants I have selected to confirm your acceptance of it. Just because I like a plant does not mean you must also. Although my recommendations will fit well where I place it, there are usually options if something does not agree with you.


So, make an appointment today and bring your tired old landscape back to life, or just create something special from a 'clean slate'.​

And from the customer's point of view:


​"Hi, Allan, I love the article. You really understood my preferences and I'm so thankful you were listening! So many designers just give the plan they want to give. Your plan was spot on!! You communicated my story without making me sound impetuous! Thank you! It was great to see you today."    ​P.G. - Yorktown, VA

Garden Center - *Retail and Wholesale Sales*​

​28 Years Serving You, Our Valued Customer

The before pictures (to view them larger, please click on the picture):

Mulch soil topsoil sand gravel stone driveway stone compost soil amedment flagstone pavers concrete pavers bagged mulch bagged soil bagged topsoil bagged garden soil bagged stone baggged rock fertilizer seed plants shrubs bushes trees herbs pesticided herbicides organic tools equipment snow removal edgers landscape supplies Garden Center fungicide animal repellents grass seed bird seed tarps nursery pruning rental turf test plots outdoor plants unwashed sand fill sand yellow sand crushed stone crushed rock