About three years ago I embarked on a new journey … that of becoming certified in landscape design. The journey took a full year longer than I had planned and hoped, due to work, family, and general life responsibilities, but that’s all in the past now. I finally reach the end of this long journey.
It involved teaching myself computer aided drafting, following twenty-five in-depth lessons on site and level surveying; developing concept, hardscape, and planting plans; designing all aspects of a residential property including fences, walls, steps, water features, garden structures, habitat gardens, vegetable gardens, border beds, lawns, low-maintenance plantings, and native plantings; delving into landscape design history and, among other things, honing my knowledge of botanical terminology.
For one lesson I designed a garden as if I were a female settler at Plimoth Plantation. For another lesson I designed a butterfly and herb garden.
I became lax on blogging about the lessons simply because of time constraints, but the lessons marched on.
There was the border planting in front of a brick wall, with both summer (top drawing) and winter (bottom drawing assuming all perennials are cut back) views. (For unknown reasons when converting to a jpeg for posting here, the drawing lost its sharpness, but it still shows the general design ideas.)
The working drawings, both plan and elevation views) of a pergola.
The fence lesson that gave me the chance to design a garden fence for espaliered fruit trees.
Plus, there were many full property design lessons too large to show here in any meaningful detail. Living and working in a rural section of Connecticut means there are very few small properties to practice design skills upon. As my instructor noted in her assessment of my final project, “I think you have designed more acreage than any other student to date. Large properties are a lot more difficult than average-sized ones and this last assignment shows that you are very capable of handling the task. The design, presentation and documentation were all excellent.”
Am I an expert? Not by any means, but, I have a lot more knowledge and understanding of what it takes to design beautiful and functional landscapes, and … I fulfilled a long desired goal … and this makes me happy.