Landscaping with Greentree Outdoor Living
We sat down with Corey Cordeiro, Senior Landscape Designer and Partner at Greentree Outdoor Living to chat about tips for homeowners looking to start the process of landscaping their new homes.
First, let’s start with some more information about yourself. What’s your background and how long have you been with Greentree?
CC: I have been with Greentree for close to 6 years now. I was the first designer ever hired on staff and two years ago I became the first partner outside of the family. My background in landscape design came from NAIT where I took the Landscape Architectural Technology program. I graduated as an LAT in 2012 and have been working for Greentree since before graduation.
What can people expect when they come to Greentree for a landscaping consultation? Give us a short walk-through of the initial process.
CC: Clients get a much more immersive and personal experience when dealing with our designers here at Greentree. We offer free initial consultations on site to brainstorm ideas and create an image of the space you have always wanted. Then you can decide whether you like our ideas and want to proceed with a full architectural design or just a quote on your project.
Do you have any specific tips for things homeowners should consider before they start on their landscaping plan?
CC: Grading! Grading is the very first thing your plan must take into account when dealing with landscaping. Where is the water going to go? Do you require any walls or steps? Is it possible to create a level yard without any retaining walls? If you have a sloped yard it is possible to make it level, whether that’s just reshaping the earth or creating a wall to help level off the grade. Most folks don’t know much about grading, and this is where an experienced company will be able to really help you out.
Okay, so continuing with that thought, we’ve all been on Houzz and Pinterest, or watched the home and garden programs that show off all sorts of ways homeowners can tackle their own landscaping. Why do you think homeowners should choose a professional company to complete their landscaping instead of attempting a DIY?
CC: When dealing with a professional company like Greentree, we take into account all the details required to build the project as designed. We have been doing landscaping for close to 20 years and our entire team comes with tons of experience, knowing exactly how much work it is and what all is involved to tackle each task. In the end, whatever we design we want to make sure it can be built and built properly! It’s hard to get mad at yourself when something goes wrong or keep yourself accountable if you build it yourself. When you hire a company we make sure we take care of all the details and fix every problem that may arise.
Now, speaking about Houzz and Pinterest, what is a popular trend you are seeing in landscaping design right now?
CC: Designing your yard to be low maintenance is always a priority it seems, so we see a lot of people moving away from your traditional wood deck and fence to avoid sanding and staining down the road. But what I would say is the biggest trend right now is building a custom outdoor kitchen for your BBQ and building your deck out of stone! Switching for more natural products opposed to concrete based products is the biggest trend this year!
Is there a product or design that is underrated and you would love more people to know about?
CC: Using natural stone, like granite patio stones, or granite stone tiling for your deck. Granite patio stones is an exclusive product of Greentree. We use only natural stone products in all of our projects and designs. One design that I might say is underrated is the thought of creating rooms in your yard like the ones your house. An “Outdoor Kitchen” area that then transitions into a dining space, then leads you into your outdoor living room! The creation of rooms will dramatically increase the function and usability of your space.
Is there a common design item that homeowners forget about when designing or completing their landscaping?
CC: Homeowners tend to forget putting a shed in their yard. They think they will fit everything in the garage, but believe me that can get filled up pretty fast! Especially if you have kids! (laughing) But seriously, your yard is an extension of your home, you should treat it that way. It is extending the square footage of your home, and with a properly planned yard that includes appropriate storage, you’ll find that you’ll enjoy the outdoors a lot more.
Something that does come up for some of our homeowners, is that not everyone has unlimited funds to work with when planning their landscaping. What do you recommend for the “budget conscious” family?
CC: Sweat equity can save you a ton of money! The biggest cost in landscaping is the labor, because it is really hard work. As long as you are comfortable rolling up your sleeves and getting dirty, tackling some of the project yourself can reduce a lot of the labor cost. But it’s not for everyone, that’s for sure! Even taking care of things like the smaller planting or tasks that just take a lot of time would be great items to do yourself.
Under the guidance of a professional?
CC: Definitely. But remember that dealing with a designer should be fun! Designing your yard and coming up with the possibilities is exiting and shouldn’t feel stressful or overwhelming. That’s why dealing with a professional makes sense for a lot of people it can take the stress out of the project but still keep you involved for all the fun parts!
What do you love about working with Greentree?
I have an extensive art background and used to sell my art pieces as well as display them in galleries around Edmonton. I love my career because I am able to be creative every day and overcome new challenges with every client and project I complete.
And finally, if I asked you to write a quick “blurb” about Greentree, what would that look like?
Greentree is originally family owned, and we still keep that family feel. We don’t sub-contract out any of our work, everything is done by our staff. We have just over 100 employees and tackle everything for the outdoors: grading, sod, planting, custom outdoor kitchens and woodwork, pools, water features and patios. We do it all!
Each Kimberley Homeowner receives a free landscaping consultation and design from Greentree Outdoor Living, to take advantage of their experience and expertise when designing a landscaping plan to fit their family’s needs, wants and budget. For more information, please speak with a Kimberley New Home Expert or your Client Concierge!
The photos above were provided by Greentree Outdoor Living, and are just a sampling of what is available for your outdoor space!