LANDSCAPE DESIGN Renee Wilkinson received her masters degree in landscape architecture from the University of Oregon. She works as a residential landscape designer in the Portland metro area helping homeowners transform their outdoor spaces. Renee partners with licensed contractors to ensure the design vision becomes a well-constructed reality. Renee is especially interested in planting design, edible landscapes, nature-play spaces and sustainable landscape practices. She incorporates ecologically-sensitive design
Hardscape pathways in the garden can turn an otherwise messy space into a cleanly organized area. It’s one of those garden elements that doesn’t seem as sexy and fun as building a pergola or raised beds, but it will make a major impact in the overall visual appeal of a garden. Over my years of homesteading, I have experimented with many different materials for pathways: wood
Vegetable seeds have been getting gently tucked into the garden beds for several weeks now, but neighborhood cats have been a major problem. They see this seemingly “empty” area of fine textured soil and think it would make a great litterbox. Adding composted steer or chicken manure to your beds is one thing, but cat poop should not be in your beds. Cats can transmit parasites
It took a village to pull it off, but we finally have some gorgeous, new raised beds! The planning started a few months ago when I finished our garden plan, which included four 4×8 raised beds for intensive vegetable growing. I wanted the beds to match the style of our mid-century home with thick, horizontal lines. We chose 2 x 10 boards to achieve that aesthetic.
The front yard is officially 100% installed! First came irrigation installation (although not in the front yard), then sod removal and soil prep. Finally, massive plant order arrived from three different nurseries and the first frost of the season was looming on the horizon. As a landscape designer, I think my favorite day of a project has to be plant day. First, some designer talk.
With irrigation construction complete, the next phase of our garden installation was site preparation. All that sod had to be removed and it was time to address the soil nutrient and structure needs of our new digs. I’m a big fan of taking pictures through all stages of your homestead’s growth. So this is your gratuitous shot of Juniper on our front porch, marking the
Construction has begun! We are in the muddy process of transforming this little house into a homestead. Everyone’s boots have about five inches of mud under them and our backs are getting a work out. The first phase of most residential landscapes is irrigation installation, which is now complete! Our former homestead did not have in-ground irrigation (aka a sprinkler system) and we still got good
Eight years ago we moved into a little bungalow on a 1/10th of an acre lot in the Brentwood-Darlington neighborhood of SE Portland. We put a lot of elbow grease into polishing this house into a loving home. But the tine has come to start the next chapter with a new homestead. We scored big with our new digs! We found a cozy, 1950s bungalow
Four years ago we built a patio and pergola in our backyard to act as the central gathering space in the garden. It’s time for an update on those projects and to share some lessons learned. What comes to mind first is finishing the patio in 97 degree heat. Wish I could go back in time to say “Damn girl, take it easy! Finish it