GRANT Residence -Bellingham

My greatest fear about working with a designer was that the designer would tell me what my garden should be. That was definitely not my experience with Lowell Garden Design. As the designer, Sarah listened to how I wanted to use the space and how I wanted it to feel, as well as my plant likes and dislikes. She applied her artistic eye to the overall layout of the garden without losing sight of function or the details of plant choice and placement. She had the vision to see past the awkward slope, poorly placed groves of firs, and patches of scraggly plants surrounded by weeds and moss. I didn’t want a slick, polished, finished garden; Sarah understood that I’m an enthusiastic hobby gardener and I love to experiment in my garden with new plants and plant combinations.

Our design made use of existing trees to create a mostly-native woodland garden, then moved around the corner into a sunny backyard to expand my vegetable and fruit gardens as well as adding beds for cutting flowers and a riot of color, including my plant experiments. She created a flow of walking paths, variations in slope, and planting areas placed to please the eye and invite a walker to explore further. Sarah also expanded my regrettably limited color palette (I do love those cool greens, blues, and purples!), teaching me to use shades of yellow, lime and chartreuse I’d previously avoided.

Sarah not only listens well and works well with her customer, she was very good with the sub-contractor we worked with to re-shape the landscape, add stonework and other hardscaping. She’s a great team member and shares the creative process with client and sub-contractors.

Sarah found creative ways to work within my budget and has been willing to approach my garden as a long-term project as we work our way around the house to new areas. We’ll be working again this year and next to refine the plant choices in this area and by the front drive and entry to my house.

And at the end, the garden is still “mine.” It’s everything I imagined and more than I could have created on my own.

Linda Grant