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Old 02-23-2017, 05:47 PM   #1
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Online landscaping services


Hello,

I was wondering if there are any sites where you could post pictures of your property and they would create a landscaping profile or ideas. I'm a super handy person, but when it comes to landscaping I really have no idea!!!!

Thanks
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Old 02-23-2017, 06:40 PM   #2
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Re: Online landscaping services


Far better to just find a local nursery.
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Old 02-23-2017, 07:03 PM   #3
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Re: Online landscaping services


Yeah but they don't want to talk to me unless I buy their stuff

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Old 02-23-2017, 08:06 PM   #4
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Re: Online landscaping services


There are lots of gardening and landscaping forums out there (this site has such a page) that might do what you are looking for. Like this site, you might be able to post a problem or project proposal and see what others think. You get a range of opinions, expertise and ideas - but you get it for free.

If you are looking for landscaper or horticulturalist to provide personalized free expertise and services, good luck with that.
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Old 02-23-2017, 08:36 PM   #5
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Re: Online landscaping services


I paid 1,000 to have an architect design my landscape for me. It was a lot of money but I decided if I was going to pay any professional it was going to be a designer.

Do NOT go with a design/construct company. Keep them independent of each other.

A few things I have learned throughout my process....

1) People make money off design, but they also make strong commission off referrals to construction companies who build that design for you. When/if you tell someone you want to bid out construction yourself and not go with "their guy", expect to get some negative energy sent your way.

2) Any 3rd party designer/builder that you use will typically design with high end in mind so that you blow your budget or are right at it. Make no mistake, design means that they can dictate how much you will pay.

3) I found a LOT of help by just renting out books from the library, and looking at others lawns in my neighborhood. You'll save money and time if you know what you want. If you don't have any clue what you're seeking, prepared to get a design handed to you with the most expensive options.

4) Hardscaping is really where I struggled - I didn't have a clue how to handle stone. Planting stuff, moving rocks, laying down mulch - that's stuff I can easily do. Stone is a whole different story where I needed professional help. A couple of recommendations on this - go to a stone store (hopefully one with a design center) and understand the cost differences between the different types. I found a reasonable hardscape contractor by using the same one who designed the stone displays in the design center. Know that CMU + veneer is super expensive, while options like pavers and stripstone are cheaper.

Underlying theme in all of this - go into a design educated, or you'll get taken for a ride. And after enough research you may find you can actually do it by yourself.
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Old 03-03-2017, 11:00 AM   #6
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Re: Online landscaping services


It is interesting to find your post. I am a designer with a landscape architecture firm, and we have been bouncing this idea of providing a level of design digitally to clients. We have found there is a need for good quality design without the “sales” motivation, but a full scale design process with a landscape architect prices most folks out of the market.

Some background information:

Yes, landscape contractors/garden centers do provide designs, but they typically have sales goals they need to hit- If your project has a big budget- you’ll get more attention and design quality. If not, you may get a standard design that could be found in a book. Not saying they are bad designers- seen some very nice designs from contractors- it is just money will drive the solution. A big negative with contractors’ designs is any relationships or incentives they receive with manufacturers. I.E. a local contractor is a distributor of a brand of concrete products (retaining wall and pavers)- the more he sells, the better the pricing against his competitors and a bigger rebate check at year end (sometimes even a vacation).

On the architect side of the house, we are trying to make a living on our designs only. Unless a client has a larger budget, it is hard to provide design services and keep the lights on in the office and at home. Expect to pay $100+/per hour for design services, which includes site visits and meetings/presentations. We typically find that we can provide a concept plan (just the ideas) between $3k-$5k. Then add another $10k-$15k for an actual set of plans that someone can build the ideas- and we are in a less expensive market. Some of our clients take the concept design and bring to their local contractor for them to interpret and construct, which is fine, but they still have control of what materials they suggest to use- which leads back to the sales component. Where a client can gain back savings of a full drawing set is that the full drawing set can be sent to as many contractors as you like, getting an apples to apples cost estimate, finding the lowest bid. We have had contractor with spreads of more than $30k in construction costs- but this is generally found in custom, high design projects. See some contractors may not be the best for a particular project, or sometimes a subcontractor would be more cost efficient to complete a certain detail of project than calling the first landscape contractor that you see drive by.

As mentioned earlier, we have tossed the idea around of filling this gap. I created a web page “www.thediylandscaper.com”/facebook page “@DIYLandscaper” to try and start some dialogue, gather ideas, needs, etc. from everyday folks looking for landscape design services- with the thinking of providing some type of service through a digital channel.

I would suggest to contact me on Facebook or reply through the forums here to learn more! Be happy to understand more of your project.

Cheers!
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