professional landscaping

Landscaping: How the Experts Do It

This is Part II of our two-part feature on professional landscaping.


“The design, construction and preserving of the natural environment takes on many facets. For luxurious outdoor living, these components need to be thought through thoroughly during the design phase,” explains Marc Wiener, director of design and sales at Deck and Patio.

With a degree in landscape architecture, Wiener knows of what he speaks. His education has given him an abundance of knowledge of plant material — the basis of such expert designs.

“We’re talking about an in-depth knowledge of how plants will grow, sequentially bloom and react to soil conditions, solar exposure, irrigation, etc,” says Marc. “To accomplish the best results, moss rock and pavers will also be built into the design. It becomes imperative, then, to soften the impact of these massive structures by scalloping plants into the hillside etc. — in a wide variety of colorful perennial, deciduous and evergreen plant material — for year round impact.”

For the first project we’re showcasing today, Marc says that even after the pool is closed for the season, it’s nice to see an impact during the winter months and he planned it that way.

Wiener used a unique combination of tumbled pavers, natural rock steps, Long Island boulders and retaining wall systems to help create a supple transition from the house, pool and spa patios, and captured the similarities in the earth tones throughout.


Landscaping Experts:

Landscaping Experts:

Beautiful results like this require a hands-on approach to grasp every aspect of the site’s characteristics, architecture, building codes, its impact to the surrounding environment and to be able to incorporate a client’s wish list into the design. It’s a culmination of these factors that separate a good design from an award-winning design as was achieved here, says Marc Wiener.


Professional Landscape Design:

Professional Landscape Design:

“To design and build this 22’ x 42’ freeform pool and raised spa, with waterfalls nestled into a 20-foot hillside, and to incorporate multiple patios at different elevations with landscaping, required more than just lines on paper,” says Wiener.


Second Project

Here, the landscape design was by Bill Renter, Deck and Patio’s Outdoor Living Expert and Marc Wiener. Their achievement garnered us a gold medal from the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals (APSP).

In addition to professional recognition, our work also amazed the clients, because their yard’s beautiful and nature-friendly transformation had been accomplished so quickly.

“I have lived here over 40 years,” says the wife. “Our property had become overgrown. It wasn’t messy but it wasn’t well done anymore. I have always loved birds and flowers and a very natural setting. And we hadn’t seen birds in a long time.

“A full-time bloom was important, as I wanted to attract, in addition to birds, lots of butterflies,” she says. “I also looked at many ponds that other landscapers had done elsewhere. In the end, I felt Deck and Patio’s work looked the most natural, which was extremely important to me.”


Landscaping in Harmony with its Surroundings:

Landscaping in Harmony with its Surroundings:

Renter says he also considered how our work would fit with the additional elements the homeowners had hired other companies to do, such as a conservatory and a small bridge — while always taking into account how everything would appear in nature.


Using Rocks and Boulders in the Landscape:

Using Rocks and Boulders in the Landscape:

The rocks used in this inspired pond installation – some of which weigh over three tons — were imported from farmers’ fields in New Jersey, says Renter. Each rock was hand picked for its particular use, sometimes for their ideal crevices in which garden perennials could be planted.


Beautiful Landscaping:

Beautiful Landscaping:

According to Wiener, The Deck and Patio Co. planted over 4,000 bulbs, 300 species of deciduous woody plants, evergreens, and perennials, including 150 different varieties of these species.

“The layout of the project detailed different settings and focal points,” says Wiener. “In some cases you are sitting next to a pond observing a waterfall; in other cases you’re walking through a woodland path.”



Professional Landscaping: When to Hire a Landscape Contractor

Updated 8-3-23

The popular home website Houzz recently shared what their managers suggest are the “10 Times To Hire a Landscape Contractor.”

Here’s their list (not in any particular order):

— When You Want a Built-In Fire Feature

— When Updating Hardscaping

— You Want a Garden Structure

— You Want a Swimming Pool

— You Want to Remove a Swimming Pool

  You Have a Site Plan From a Landscaper Architect

  You Need to Work With a Hilly Lot

  You Began a DIY Project but Ran Out of Steam

  You Need Help Setting Up Your Backyard Farm


Deck and Patio agrees the above Houzz list is a good one to go by. 


Why Professional Expertise?

Most importantly, professionals have the equipment needed to properly remove trees and shrubs, till soil, and remove rocks or boulders that are in the way. They understand soil, and what is needed to nourish a particular property’s soil. They are also expert at conceiving a well-thought out design.

And beyond major construction, to create idyllic landscapes, professionals know which plantings work well together, their bloom periods, which will thrive in full or partial sun and shade, as well as which ones need the least care.


Spectacular Landscape Design

Another trademark of spectacular design is the artful combination of ‘softscape’ (or ‘landscape’) with ‘hardscape.’ Our use of moss rock, which has contributed to our firm’s many awards, adds dimension and texture while creating a natural appearance.

“In our design plans, we also take into consideration a home’s architecture and the clients’ style preferences, as well as property grades,” adds our own Dave Stockwell,.“We plan so that the landscape will flourish and last for years. Our designs also apply a layering technique for privacy on the periphery, and vibrancy where it will be best enjoyed.”

Below are a few examples of our team’s expertise — which also showcase Houzz’s recommendations.


Pergolas Define Outdoor Space

Pergolas Define Outdoor Space

This Deck and Patio project (immediately above) incorporates three times that Houzz’s list says one should turn to a professional landscape contractor:  handsome Travertine hardscapes, a garden structure (pergola and a swimming pool.

“As you can see from this project, once a pool is in place, sometimes all that needs adding is a handsome pergola, comfortable furniture, and an elegant patio for the perfect level of contented breathing room,” says our own Dave Stockwell.



Manhasset/NY: Custom Built-In Sunken Fire Structure

Manhasset/NY: Custom Built-In Sunken Fire Structure

Built-in fire structures are one of Deck and Patio’s specialities. And in addition to a pavilion with fireplace, we designed and built the clients a large sunken fire pit next to the pool. Of course, you don’t have to get this elaborate, but like the Houzz list suggests, it’s important to use a professional landscape professional for this amenity.

The veneer of the fire pit was also used on the pavilion’s fireplace, as well as on the face of this project’s outdoor kitchen and exterior of the custom spa. It’s all Bucks County Country Ledgestone.



 Landscaping Long Bloom Periods:

Landscaping Long Bloom Periods:

Deck and Patio has the machinery and expertise to lift and place very heavy boulders and rocks which add to the beauty of landscape design, especially when waterfalls are involved. For this project we also incorporated creeping evergreen ground covers that cascade and wind over and between the rocks we used.



Landscaping for Visual Impact:

Landscaping for Visual Impact:

In order to preserve the surrounding landscape for this project, instead of clear-cutting the half-acre property, the clients built their home among mature oaks, maples and pines. While space had been left for a pool and spa,  doing the landscaping required professional expertise like Deck and Patio. It was  essential to plan in such a way so that any construction of the pool etc. would not disturb existing work and their beautiful woodland property.



Adding Water Features to Existing Landscaping:

Adding Water Features to Existing Landscaping:

Here Deck and Patio incorporated water features into the existing landscape. When considering color and texture expert knowledge of how plant material will eventually grow was essential. Here we see low-lying evergreens and ground cover perennials in and around the stream and rock outcroppings to soften the large boulders — in a way that does not stand out or detract from the overall intent of looking natural.



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