The design process begins with a telephone interview.The design process begins with a telephone interview. The size, type of project, and the time frame is discussed. The owner talks about the project and what is to be accomplished through the design. The designer finds out the size of the property and if the owner has a site plan or a plat prepared (some smaller residential properties can be designed without a plat but most often one is needed). The number and type of existing trees or other existing features are discussed. Neighborhood or city requirements are discussed. Budget for the project installed may be discussed. An approximate design fee may be given at this time.
A meeting is set up between the owner and the client at the site or at the design studio (for new construction). All aspects of the project are discussed with the designer making careful notes. A fee or range of cost is given. A time frame for completion is discussed.
Preliminary plans are produced and the client is called to review the drawing and to approve or choose direction.Preliminary plans are produced and the client is called to review the drawing and to approve or choose direction. The plans are fine tuned based on client input and final drawings are produced. The final plans are presented in triplicate and are ready for bid. Payment for the work is due in full upon presentation.
Plans drawn to the owners approval are submitted to us to bid. We do a thorough take off of the plans so that we know exactly what materials are required to install the plans as drawn. Sources for the materials are located and priced. The project is then priced turn key with materials and labor to install the required work included in the cost. If the project is under construction and the final condition of the grounds cannot be determined because of construction, we will bid the project from a contractors finished grade. This is to within one inch of final grade.
Once the project is priced the owner can then determine if the project is within budget. If it is over budget, we can work with the owner or architect to get the project to budget. Once approved, the bid goes into contract.
The progress of the project is carefully monitored. Two weeks prior to the project's installation we will begin to obtain plant materials for the project (a deposit is usually required). The project is ready for landscaping to begin once the hardscapes (driveways, sidewalks, etc.) are in and the grounds are graded with equipment. The irrigation piping is the first phase of landscaping to be installed. Once the pipe is laid and flushed the plantings can begin. Installation of plants and irrigation heads may happen simultaneously. Large trees go in first, then shrubs, and lastly sod and seasonal color. It is essential for water to be available as soon as the plantings go in. Lighting and then mulch are installed. Balance of payment is due on completion.