4 Reasons To Consult A Landscape Architect Before Building Your House

Have you ever considered building your new home without first making a plan? If you answered no to this question, we agree! You also shouldn’t go into your landscaping without having a plan in place. 

Assessing the different characteristics of your land

Your very large lot is located on the edge of the water, and you decide to build your house in a specific location, without really visualizing what your landscaping will look like. Now imagine that after construction is complete, you realize that the vegetation you ultimately want to plant will not have access to sufficient light. Worse still: you realize that your house, too close to the banks, does not allow you to create the layout of your choice, under the penalty of distorting it. Or, the regulations in force in your area do not allow you to build the development you want.

These are just examples of situations that can be avoided by calling in an expert. Amateur landscapers may forget to consider some important features of the chosen terrain. The landscape architect is the expert who will help you create the optimal layout according to your needs.

In addition, he can advise you on the construction plans to optimize access to your development. A few minor adaptations can make all the difference in the final result. The landscaper will inform you about the brightness of your yard and the amount of sun depending on the orientation of the land. It will even enlighten you on the suitability of indoor and outdoor spaces. The purpose of this consultation is to ensure that your construction plans will allow you to achieve exactly the result you want for your layouts.

The design of a development plan

The design of landscaping plans is one of the services offered by landscape architects. The purpose of this plan is to properly plan your outdoor spaces. This preview will allow you to better visualize how the space will be divided, the proposed layouts, and the different phases of the project. To set up this projection, the architect will take into account the actual dimensions of your land, your needs, your tastes, and your budget. 

This step is used to ensure that the final product meets your expectations. It also allows you to be aware of the progress of the work and to better understand the projected costs of your project.

Tailor-made advice

The landscape architect you hire to carry out this work will offer you personalized advice, taking into account your starting point and the result you want to obtain. Don’t forget to check their qualifications. There are several certifications to ensure you are doing business with an experienced professional. However, there is no mandatory course or competency card in the landscape trade. You can ask your candidates about the training they have taken (there are DEP and DEC in the field) or about their previous experience.

Consulting a landscaper will help you better understand the particular situation of your property. Among other things, if you have uneven terrain or are on the edge of a body of water, the expert can warn you of the precautions to take to obtain a layout to your liking.

Support at all stages of the process

The landscape architect will follow you throughout the development process. He will be present from the first drafts of the plan to the coordination of the various contractors, to the finishing and maintenance of your yard. He will be able to ensure that all the work is carried out according to the pre-established deadlines and that the result is of high quality.

Be sure to discuss with the landscape architect before hiring to agree on the services rendered. Indeed, some architects work simply as consultants. We recommend opting for full support from an expert. He will take care of the coordination, advise you and solve any problems that may arise during the work. If for any reason, you are needing help with the exterior of your home, then contact our friends at Foothills Painting Boulder CO for all of your painting needs. In this way, you ensure the efficiency of your project with an expert. The latter will know how to anticipate the next steps and above all call on the right people.

3 Tips For Designing Your Outdoor Kitchen

You’ve been dreaming for a long time of an outdoor kitchen that will allow you to fully enjoy the long summer days in your backyard. Today, it’s decided: you’re going to start making your wish list for this major project! However, despite all your inspirations at the moment, it is difficult to find you there. Which materials to choose? Which appliances are the toughest to endure the rigors of the great outdoors? And how not to forget anything?

To help you create an outdoor kitchen design that will meet your needs while lasting over time, we have put together some practical advice for you.

Choosing the right countertop material

We all know it: the Quebec climate is often unpredictable and regularly flirts with extremes. For your counter, it is therefore essential to choose a material that is durable and able to withstand both frost and extreme heat! Here are some examples of proven materials.

Natural stone

Classic material if ever there was one, natural stone never goes out of style and is still as popular as ever. In this category, we find in particular granite and slate.

Resistant and recognized for its elegance, granite is made up of solidified liquid minerals, such as quartz. If it is often very popular in conventional kitchens, it is also an interesting choice for an outdoor kitchen. The typical thickness of a granite countertop can vary between ¾” and 1 ¼”.

For its part, slate is also an interesting option, as it is resistant to both water and intense heat. This is a point that should not be overlooked! Durable and solid, this type of stone has a unique cachet with its black tint and its two different finishes: either polished (that is, smoother) or natural (with charming imperfections). The average thickness of a slate countertop is about 1.5″, but some gluing can be done to give the impression of a different thickness.


Neolith is a particularly compact type of porcelain. It is made from a mixture of clay, feldspar, silica, oxides, natural minerals, and pigments. Ultra-thin and resistant, it requires no maintenance and manages to maintain its integrity despite heat, humidity, and other irritants.


Also very compact and sophisticated, Dekton brings together several raw materials that are generally found in good quality porcelain, glass, and quartz. Like Neolith, it requires no maintenance and its porosity is practically zero.


Finally, Lapitec is also in line with these new materials: easy to maintain and as elegant as they are durable. It is an innovative, high-performance, and refined sintered stone, whose characteristics and appearance are similar to those of natural stone.

Select appliances carefully

Just like for your counter, it is very important that your appliances can adequately withstand bad weather. Whether it’s for your barbecue, your smokehouse, your refrigerator, your pantry, your storage spaces, or simply your cabinet handles, making the right choice is essential.

In this regard, aluminum and stainless steel are generally very popular, and we explain why.


Aluminum is a very light material, natural aesthetic, and is easy to maintain. A metal as solid as it is unalterable, it offers exemplary resistance to the vagaries of climatic conditions, without ever losing its shine.

But how does he get there? Thanks to the oxide layer that forms naturally on its surface in contact with oxygen, aluminum manages to protect itself from corrosion damage. Simple and practical!

Stainless steel

Stainless steel owes its high resistance to a similar principle. Indeed, when its surface comes into contact with oxygen and humidity in the air, a layer of chromium oxide is created there, which offers it good protection against external aggressions.

Appliances made of stainless steel are therefore easy to maintain, making them good choices for your outdoor kitchen.

Think about the smallest details

Before starting the construction of your new kitchen, there are certain details to remember. Here are a few!

Municipal and government standards

As you probably know, you cannot renovate or build whatever you want as you see fit. Of course, certain laws or standards must be respected during your project.

Before even considering all the details of the plan for your outdoor kitchen, find out about the municipal standards to be respected for this type of renovation, and check if you need to obtain a permit before proceeding. That way, you’ll make sure you start your project off on the right foot and avoid potential problems.

Electricity and plumbing

Who says kitchen, says household appliances, and washbasin… We must therefore not neglect access to water and electricity! Whether your cooking system is gas or electric, you will need to provide all the necessary connections when you plan your new kitchen. You will never have too many electrical outlets, guaranteed!

Lighting, but also heating!

Even the most beautiful evenings in July can be a bit chilly. You won’t regret installing a heating system or a fireplace in your kitchen! This is an important feature to consider when developing your plan.

In terms of lighting, you just have to go there according to your tastes, your budget, and the layout of your kitchen. The important thing is that you have enough light to see your work surface well and that you can dim the lighting to create a more intimate atmosphere if necessary.…

Connected Home: 3 Elements For Your Backyard

Technology is flourishing and we are always finding new ways to take advantage of it through our daily activities. Have you ever heard of home automation? Increasingly popular, these systems are, to put it simply, synonymous with a connected home!

A system of this type allows you to control the alarm, lighting, and heating system remotely, from your cell phone or tablet. Having a smart home has several huge benefits.

Many other functions are also available, among other things for the layout of your backyard! We, therefore, present 3 elements to consider for the exterior layout of your connected home.

The automatic lighting system

During the hot season, it is quite normal to want to take full advantage of your yard. With the help of a landscape architect, plan the addition of lights allowing you both to enjoy your yard in the evening, but also to enhance the atmosphere of your landscaping.

Indeed, it is possible to plan a layout that takes into account the lighting of your yard and that will enhance it. Thanks to the play of light, you can create all kinds of atmospheres for your summer evenings. Certain areas of your layout can also benefit from better lighting.

During your meeting with your landscape architect, you should discuss the key elements of your decor. This can therefore provide special lighting in a garden, a body of water, or around any furniture in your yard.

Installing smart lights could give you the ability to control the intensity of the lights (using a dimmer), the color of the beams, and even the time of activation of the lighting system. With all its options, you will be able to create distinct spaces in your yard with different atmospheres.

In addition to providing automation for your lighting, you can control everything from a smartphone or tablet.

The outdoor sound system, an essential for your connected home

Why not install speakers to listen to music around the pool or while having a barbecue? However, not only do you have to think about choosing speakers that are resistant to water, UV rays, and weather, but also think about sound propagation.

Being outside, there are very few or no surfaces on which the vibrations are retained, so you will have to think carefully about their location. There are speakers designed specifically for the outdoors, which are waterproof and offer a two-way sound field, thus ensuring the best quality sound delivery for your backyard.

You can enjoy this addition all summer long while listening to your favorite tunes. The sound system will also make it easy to set the mood during your events. Like the lighting, you can control everything from a phone or tablet with just a few clicks.

A smart swimming pool: increased safety

Another element that can be optimized with home automation is your swimming pool. This type of installation makes it possible to secure this area where oversight can be fatal. Indeed, many anti-drowning devices are available. This feature helps keep your children and pets safe. You can opt for infrared systems that will trigger alarms, motion detectors, or even anti-drowning nets.

In addition, a smart pool system also allows simple and automated management of heating, lighting, and water quality directly from your mobile device or tablet. Pool maintenance can be an irritant for many homeowners. This intelligent system can therefore simplify your life and allow you to enjoy your layout.

Once you have found your ideas for inspiration, it is important to think about this element when planning the layout of your backyard. You will save a lot of time and above all make it safer. Several options are possible for the automation of your swimming pool. Your landscaper can guide you in these choices.…

How To Integrate The Water Garden Into Your Layout?

With its coolness and peaceful sound, water easily manages to create a soothing ambiance when integrated into the exterior decor of your home. To be surrounded by it more often, why not opt ​​for the development of a water garden? Whether you want a pond, waterfalls, fountains, or waterfalls, a landscape architect can help you add these elements to your decor. You will get landscaping that will make you dream this, according to the style you want.

What is a water garden?

Presented simply, it is a plant and aquatic arrangement where water is of course in the spotlight. There are very simple versions (for example, waterproof containers in which to grow aquatic plants) and others much more elaborate (such as large artificial ponds with waterfalls, water jets, and a small elegant overhanging bridge). It is therefore a question of finding the variation that best corresponds to the desired style and the budget you have.

How a landscape architect can work with you to design the structure

The landscape architect is a professional specializing in the creation or reorganization of outdoor spaces of all sizes. He puts his knowledge, his skills, and his artistic side to the benefit of his client. Landscapers have different expertise. One of them can be the creation of water gardens. His work will cover the different stages of landscaping.

Visualize the plan of your dreams and the elements to put in place

What do you like the most? A single pool? A small natural waterfall that flows into a larger pond? A more modern-looking waterfall? Do you have visual examples (photos, videos) of what attracted you? Depending on the characteristics of your land, the location of your house, and your budget, the landscape architect can tell you if what you want is realistic or not, and make your proposals.

As mentioned above, when designing the plans for the water garden, one must decide from the outset on the desired style. Most of the time, water gardens allow you to create a country setting. Loose vegetation, wildflowers, and rocks are often used to provide a body of water. However, it is also possible to put together more modern assortments. We will use games of light reflections and we will focus the composition on a symmetrical design composed of more angular pieces. One of the current trends, which allows a more aesthetic rendering, is to bet on very slow water flow which gives an almost static air to the expanse.

Whatever your desires for a water garden, the landscape designer is fully qualified to help you choose what you want to see there and offer you the options necessary to achieve your goals.

Type of pool and adequate equipment

At least one pond is needed to create a water garden. Your landscape architect will be able to suggest the one that seems most relevant to your project, as well as the equipment you will need.

The flexible wall pool:

The soft-sided basin uses a geomembrane (an impermeable canvas) to create the body of water. This is the most common technique for designing a garden with a more rural look. Indeed, it makes it possible to create pools with a softer outline that will best imitate natural water currents. Sometimes, the geomembrane is used in addition to a rigid wall and makes it possible to guarantee the water tightness of the basin.

The rigid-walled pool: 

The rigid-walled basin can be constructed from different materials such as concrete, stainless steel, or aluminum. The installation of this type of basin is often easier since the container will be performed. The walls make it possible to create a more modern and geometric rendering than the geomembrane.

The equipment needed for the water garden:

When setting up any body of water, it is not only necessary to think of the aesthetic side, but also of the mechanical aspect. To avoid ending up with a pool of stagnant water, it is necessary to provide a pump and a filter. In addition, it is necessary to think about the equipment for controlling the flow of water and the intensity of the fall. The overflow is a necessary aspect to maintain the correct level of water. The bottom drain will be useful for maintaining the pool. It allows the water to be drained to prevent freezing and breakage during the winter.

The most suitable plants for your project

Adding vegetation to a body of water is a common practice for landscapers. However, you have to think about it wisely and make an informed choice to create an aesthetic water garden. Many people opt for vegetation giving a more rural and natural look. But there is a wide variety of aquatic plants.

Submerged plants

Submerged plants, from the Canadian waterweed family, filter and oxygenate your pools. This type of vegetation is sold in a basket. The container is designed to be underwater at the bottom of a basin. The basket will facilitate the maintenance of the plant, but also the body of water in general. You can apply fertilizer to them to fertilize them and restore their vigor.

Emerging plants

This category of vegetation acts as a water filter in shallow areas. Depending on the plant chosen, it will come either in a basket or in a pot. You will need to be informed of maintenance measures, which are different from submerged plants. It is interesting to dwell on the types of emergent plants, since some of them may bloom differently. You can also use aquatic plant fertilizer with this type of vegetation.

Floating plants

Floating plants remain on the surface of the pool. They have a few uses (especially if your pond is home to fish), but they are mostly aesthetic. Some of these plants flowers, others do not, which can guide your choices according to the desired effect. Maintenance is easy and does not require fertilizing.…

7 Tips For Furnishing Your Terrace

The terrace is the equivalent of your outdoor living room. This room combining relaxation and functionality will serve not only as a zen space but also as a living room to welcome your many guests on beautiful summer days. Who doesn’t love terrace evenings ending by the fire?

Want to spend more time outdoors enjoying the summer season? No matter what stage you are at in the layout of your terrace, this short guide will guide you in your next tasks. You can either start your construction project or update your outdoor spaces.

A harmonious decor

Your patio is an extension of your home. It must be practical and aesthetic. It should reflect the interior of your home, the decor, the theme of your home, and above all, reflect your image! Opt for materials and a finish similar to the look already in place. You can take inspiration from the furniture you have, the color shades of your walls, or even the decoration. Do not see the terrace as a separate space, but rather as an extension of your interior.

Much like when interior designers try to delimit living spaces, we will apply the same mentality to the terrace and the patio. Thus, you could install a dining room, a fireplace, and a kitchen area according to your needs. The important thing is to keep the same style but give a different character to each delimited zone. The current trend is also to provide outdoor spaces as well as that inside. That is to say, to integrate a sofa, a coffee table, and carpets, without forgetting the accessories to make these areas as warm as possible.

Functionality of spaces

When designing your terrace, you have to think carefully about the functionality of the space. To ensure maximum comfort, you must organize your space according to the size of your land and especially its shape. Optimize the space so that everything is quickly accessible and, above all, that the space is inviting.

When designing your space, plan for the worst. Be prepared, among other things, for bad weather and temperature variations. A mistake often noticed is the layout of a terrace that does not effectively meet the needs of its users. So plan the maximum number of people you will welcome there, the times of day when this area is likely to be used as well as the position of the famous cocktail bar (or any other workspace that will simplify your life). Rain or shine, a well-appointed terrace is the one that perfectly meets your needs and makes your evenings a success.

The role of furniture

Furniture plays a major role in the layout of your terrace. Quality furniture that combines comfort and style is preferable. They are likely to spend a lot of time at the mercy of the elements. You will therefore enjoy your landscaping more by investing in durable and easy-care materials. However, plan seasonal maintenance for higher-value furniture, fabrics, and cushions.

Always sought-after shadow corners

Summer often rhymes (at least, we hope so) with sunshine. Although it is pleasant to sunbathe for a few hours at the beach, we must not overlook the impact of UV rays on our health. When building a terrace, it is essential to plan shady areas for the hottest days.

To do this, there are several options, whether for a covered terrace adjacent to the house or a pergola. Darker corners will make a nice transition between warmth and comfort. In addition, this solar protection will also serve as a shelter for bad weather. Kill two birds with one stone.

Plants can also be used to shelter from the sun. You could, for example, install climbing plants on a pergola. This will create a cooler and shaded space.

Appropriate lighting

One of the key design concepts is lighting! As with all rooms in your home, lights provide a different perspective when the sun begins to set. Primarily, outdoor lights provide the ability to extend evenings and bring your patio to life. For sure, it will become the favorite place to have a drink and chat with friends!

A touch of greenery

Sure! Greenery is a must! You can add vegetation in several ways. You could extend an existing garden, plant a few flowers and flower beds, or even buy potted plants. Also, consider the maintenance required for the vegetation. Some plants are particularly easy to care for, while others require a little or a lot more attention.

You will need to consult an expert at the time of purchase to choose plants whose sun needs correspond to the location you reserve for them in your yard. In addition, the winter maintenance of plants varies greatly from one species to another. Make sure you have enough space indoors if these cannot survive the cold temperatures.

The fireplace

Setting up a fireplace in your backyard is essential to make the most of summer! It will not only allow you to enjoy your terrace on sunny days but also after sunset. The fireplace will also warm you towards the end of summer when you try to lengthen the summer season.

A fireplace creates a unique atmosphere to spend pleasant evenings. A variety of options are available to you; electric fireplaces, gas, or the good old traditional wood fire. The traditional fire is the one that requires the most maintenance. Indeed, it takes longer to light but it offers an incomparably warm character. It is also necessary to plan a space further from the house and find out about the standards of your municipality that apply.