A Remodel in Edina

December 14, 2012

In this project the client was going through a remodel of their home and figured since the house was receiving an update, the landscape should as well.  This is often a very good choice since usually there is disruption to an existing landscape during the remodeling process as well as the disturbed areas where materials, trucks and equipment need to be stored.  Our client understood this and decided to get everything done at the same time.

After meeting with the homeowners and discussing their goals, the design principle became clear: create a landscape plan that would accentuate the newly remodeled features making the home become the focal point rather than the landscape.  First and foremost, the scale of the design was considered.  The home is a rambler walkout so we did not want to overwhelm the look and feel with large plant beds which usually require large items which we felt would compete with the architecture. Instead, we created modest sized areas with focus on bold color contrasts as well as contour enhancements to create appeal.

For the color contrast, we incorporated easy to care for plants with strong foliage color.  Summerwine Ninebark trees and Obsidian Heuchera provide darker shades for drama while shrubs like the Hydrangea, Euonymus and dwarf Norway Spruce provide varying shades of green as well as contrasting leaf textures.  To complete the plant palette, low and compact Magic Carpet Spirea offer multi-season foliage color, pockets of flowering perennials provide flowers during the summer, and stiff upright clumps of ornamental grasses lend an architectural feel to the gardens.

Since the homes exterior was now going to incorporate a beautiful natural stone, we couldn’t resist complementing this look within the landscape as well.  Large boulder outcroppings resembling the stone on the house were used to create a focal point as well as “hold” berms, providing wonderful contour within the plant beds.  To finish the look, we used a natural Savanna stone edging to separate the planted areas from the lawn.

Finally, an irregular bluestone walkway and front stoop allows for a second stone element to come into play, complementing the stone on the home nicely.  Installing irregular stone versus cut and patterned gives the entry a much more casual feel which we felt fit the landscape and home better.

To finish things off we installed a low voltage lighting system to bring warmth to the landscape in the evenings.  The ornamental trees and upright grasses are up-lit with recessed Focus light fixtures and the stone on the home has Kitchler light fixtures that wash the foundation stone with warm light.  For a comfortable approach to the front door, we used Kitchler path lights to illuminate the Bluestone walkway.

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