Our Process

CLIENT INVOLVEMENT EVERY STEP OF THE WAY A big part of a developing any successful outdoor living space is our understanding that you are making an significant investment in your most important asset, your home. nichols-sketch-webWith that in mind, we like to keep you involved in every step of your project, from initial designs to selecting materials to keeping you informed onsite while work is in-progress. By working together, we can make your outdoor living project a tremendous success. We know youll be pleased with the finished result but we strive great lengths to make the process enjoyable also.

We like to begin all outdoor living projects with a free consultation that includes a Landscape & Site Analysis. This inspection ($150 value) gives us a picture of your property and prospective building site. We like to include the following items in our assessment and analysis:

LISTENING IS FOREMOST TO US. Central to the success of M2 Planning & Design LLC © The simple act of listening is sometimes lost and it begins early in the design process and continues throughout. By REALLY listening to our clients we gather information and valuable input, which directly shapes the outcome of our final project. Effective listening is more than simply hearing: it is the ability to understand whats being asked, communicating well, ask appropriate questions, and learn what the customers key concerns are. Effective listening throughout a project makes happy customers,  and results in spaces that are tailored to the goals, objectives, needs, uses, interests, and preferences of our clients.  Common sense also dictates that if your listening and do things once everyone saves time and money.

ASSESS HEALTH OF EXISTING PLANTS. We check for plants that are struggling and possibly diseased, or damaged and suggest changes to save those plants such as relocating to a sunnier or dryer spot in your yard perhaps,  maybe its a shade plant and its recieving too much sun, or it like its feet moist and its too dry.  Whatever the case we can quickly make suggestions. These are very common situations.

PRUNING. We can quickly check to see if plants are pruned correctly or are in need of  some pruning so that plants are not competing with the same sunlight and water source as other nearby plants.

SITE DRAINAGE. We check your property and potential building site for erosion and proper drainage away from home and patio foundations. This is also important when specifying plant material that may or may not like wet conditions or needs to contain erosion control qualities.
OUTDOOR LIGHTING. We will at your request, check your lighting system for blind spot areas where it may be too dark between lights which could create a security hazard, check for lights that are not functioning, lights that have been kicked off their targets by a foot or mower wheel perhaps. We also want to make sure that the transformer has adequate power to run your lights. Its very common to see a transformer with no available wattage left and rule of thumb states that you should always have a little more power than the lights your running to extend the life of the transformer. We will also examine to make sure that lights further away from the transformer are connected to the higher voltage  so those lights are not burning dimmer than others due to power loss over the long wire run.

TRACKING SUN EXPOSURE. We identify the sun and shade patterns in your spaces in order to specify the correct plant material we will be installing. We will also suggest areas for seasonal color accents to dress up entrances and create the most appealing curb appeal possible.

ADDING YOUR PERSONALITY. We then move to the next step of working with you, and that involves gathering the ideas and photos of outdoor living projects that you have gathered and thought would be nice on your property.  We can then incorporate those elements into our designs and provide a detailed budget for achieving your goals.

BUDGET & BUILD IT. Once the budget is approved, we move into the development and building phase. The building phase can last anywhere from a week or two to a couple months, depending upon the complexity and size of your project. We like to point out that all design and building of your outdoor project is managed by us! This gives you one single source for all questions and answers on how your outdoor living project is progressing! And we stay with you through the entire process until you are satisfied and the last part of the project is completed.