welcome!

back yard landscaping pizza oven patio

Let’s start with our title: “6 questions to create an ideal fire pit.” What is ideal??? An ideal fire pit means what’s right for YOU. We don’t believe in cookie-cutter designs around here, and every home is different.  These tips will help you figure out what would be the ideal fire pit at your home. […]

6 questions to create an ideal fire pit

Design School

 read The Full Post

We worked on a master plan for the landscape around a new construction home for clients out in the country. This property has something for everyone! We’ll start with our inspiration board and plant palette. For plants, were looking for grasses and other plants that have lovely movement and fit in the prairie-inspired surroundings. Of […]

Master plan for a complete landscape design

In the studio

 read The Full Post

country haven master plan

Oh I’m excited to show you this landscape design project! We worked with amazing homeowners that seriously own a secluded country haven outside of Adel, complete with gorgeous views, lots of timber, and Panther Creek running way back in their yard. Without any improvements, it was already a special site. The homeowners brought wonderful ideas […]

Country Haven Landscape Design

In the studio

 read The Full Post

Our friends were looking for a landscape update for their gorgeous Tudor home in West Des Moines. This project was a treat because our clients are completely capable DIY-ers, so we were able to talk through the design plan knowing exactly who was doing the installation work.  A landscape update is less of a big […]

Tudor Landscape Update

In the studio

 read The Full Post

outdoor-kitchen-and-dining-design

WHAT EVEN IS AN OUTDOOR KITCHEN? In Iowa, we are cooped up half the year. While the weather is pleasant, we want to be outside as much as possible.  I get a lot of questions about outdoor kitchen design – what’s needed? How do you plan? To help you get started, I want to teach […]

Check your zones for a great outdoor kitchen plan

Design School

 read The Full Post

back yard fire pit

Let’s start with the front yard on this fun project.  This is really a case of “business in the front, party in the back”!!  The front yard plantings are lovely, but the real fun happens when we get to the back yard. Here in the front we have a great mix of colors and textures […]

Front yard, back yard: new construction landscaping

In the studio

 read The Full Post

garden path flagstone curved

Every pathway should get you from point A to point B. That’s the lowest bar. I think it’s not a path if it doesn’t! Really, the journey is what matters. You can tell when you’re on a well-designed pathway. It has a purpose. Its shape, layout and materials all support that purpose. We can create […]

Three questions to help you create a well-designed pathway

Design School

 read The Full Post

If you’ve spent any time on our website, you surely recognize this beautiful home. This landscape project was one of Red Fern’s first design jobs in New Hampshire many years ago, and it has never made it to the blog until now! We love the gracious front porch, the green on green on green peaceful […]

Landscape for New Construction

In the studio

 read The Full Post

We put together a plan for a great couple in Pleasant Hill.  This project focused on both the front yard’s curb appeal and privacy in the back yard. Building on what they already had in the landscape, we created a retreat from busy life and shelter from the noisy main road near their home. The […]

Pleasant Hill Landscape

In the studio

 read The Full Post

landscaping-grown-in

When working with clients on a landscape design, I balance so many different things. We want an instant landscape, but we need to watch the budget. We want low maintenance plantings, but we want instant gratification. I often remind my clients that landscapes take time to grow. Just about every picture on Pinterest or Houzz is […]

pro tip: landscapes take time

Design School, In the studio

 read The Full Post

JOIN our email NEWSLETTER

monthly field notes filled with landscaping tips, freebies and news from the studio