P r o c e s s
E D E N S P E C T R U M D E S I G N
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The Eden Spectrum Design process is ultimately that which makes you, the future resident of our mutually created environment, most comfortable. It typically begins when you contact me.
Via e-mail, or over the phone, some general information is covered, such as my availability, a rough (ultimately firm) schedule for the process and a finish date for the design.
Cost can be generally discussed given the following details: lot size, the particular governing body of your community, the amount & scale of the hardscape elements, presence of reclaimed water, proposed grade changes and presence of accurate architectural and grading maps (the latter varies in importance with both the extremities of your grade and the degree to which we will be modifying, cutting, filling or retaining any grades). I will also get an idea of how many rough drafts we may need and whether or not the style and genre (period and place) you wish to evoke will be easy for us to communicate and nail down.
Some people don't feel the need to accumulate these images - either because they trust my reputation to make something out of their general directive, or because they want something very simple, contemporary or, famously, low-maintenance.
After discussing the space and throwing around ideas i will set a firm schedule and price. I will take possession of the architectural plans, site plans, plot map and start measuring and surveying. (What I create my template with will be some combination of the above, you need not provide all of this but the complexity of the area and the amount of surveying i do factors into cost).
Then begins the rough draft. Some jobs require several renditions with subtly or radically different approaches. Scaled drawings of hardscape features and sketches of scenes are included in addition to the bird's-eye view(s). During the rough draft meeting (or one of the rough meetings - if we are doing multiple roughs we will go over the plant list plant by plant, looking at images and discussing the behaviors, growth rates and sizes-at-maturity of each, making alterations as we see fit.
If the hardscape element of the design is particularly up in the air i may wait until a second or third rough, after the hardscape is nailed down, before laying in the flora. Also discussed during roughs are the materials (pre-cast elements, facias of masonry, concrete textures and colors, to name a few). Some of these decisions, though, are left until the contracting phase when you are nailing down the details of just how much you want to spend on the installation. If you like, i can have the job bid for you, during the rough draft phase, so we can get a general idea of where we are. Keep in mind, if your dream is starting to get pricey, i can advise you on how the job can be phased.
Then i go to final. Your final draft will be one set of color drawings and at least two black-and-white copies (more if HOA or CSD submittals are required) with your plant layout, bird's-eye hardscape, drainage, irrigation (color coded), low-voltage lighting (layout, not wiring, since a good lighting technician will always want to play with the exact wattage demand from each hub), topography (one or two foot intervals), hardscape material designations, hardscape structure details and renderings and a printed plant list with the scientific and common names, quantity and size, and the plant-to-valve assignment(a letter corresponding to the irrigation group, or drip valve, to which that plant is connected).
(to begin the process see the above number or click to access the contact page).
don't worry, lots of people come to me with little input on a desired style, either because they don't have a desired style or because they don't quite know what that style is (or how to explain it). Between the initial contact and the scheduled on-site meeting date is a great time to accumulate addresses of landscapes you like in your area, magazine clippings or web images of complete landscapes, hardscape features, individual plants and even architecture that expresses your style.
The plant list will explain the division of the plants into their respective irrigation groups [ie. High-frequency/short-duration (shallow-rooted perennials, annuals and high-water shrubs), medium-frequency/medium-duration (low-water perennials and most shrubs, low-frequency/long-duration (trees and low-water shrubs and low-water woody ground covers), vegetable garden, oak zone)]. This irrigation key will show typical timer settings for the second summer after planting (when they are essentially considered "established").
The color originals can be scanned and placed on disk for an extra charge. You will have the plant list/irrigation legend in hand and it can be sent to you electronically as well.
Presentation of the final is not always the final meeting. I am very happy to be consulted on design decisions being made during the contracting/bidding process. Contractors nurserymen and craftsmen are welcome to contact me with their questions or ideas and i'm available for on-site consulting during construction as well.