Cottage garden makeover in West Seattle

Cottage garden in West Seattle

A cottage garden in West Seattle

This charming little garden needed some sprucing up.

This charming little garden needed some sprucing up.

We used pavers to make the front walkway larger and more colorful.

We installed pavers to make the front walkway larger and more colorful.

The plants blocked the narrow walkway.

Plants blocked the narrow walkway.

We relocated the large shrubs and added pavers to widen the walkway.

The front entry lacked focus.

The front entry lacked focus.

Now the entry

Now the entry is defined and inviting.

The plants blocked the front window

The plants blocked the front window

New plants are the right size for the small garden.

New plants are the right size for the small garden.

The change is stunning. We keep finding awesome little details. Well done and high fives all around – Cheryl and John

Posted in Beautiful gardens, Before and After | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Seattle back yard make over

This backyard was mainly grass and a patio when our client asked us to make it special.

Our clients asked us to make their back yard special.

A lawn and patio

Before it was mostly lawn with a patio in the far corner.

Now it is a garden

Now it is a garden.

Wooden stakes show the future path.

Wooden stakes show the future path and planting beds.


The water feature surrounded by plants is the focal point from the patio.

The front bed needed some weeding and care.

The front bed needed some attention.

Stepping stones provide visual interest and access through a wide bed.

Stepping stones provide visual interest and access through a wide bed.

Like many urbanites, I am green thumb less, but I don’t want my yard to look that way. Thank goodness for Northwest Botanicals! Working with Pat, Dennis and their team was an absolute pleasure. They transformed my very lackluster back and front yards into dream yards worthy of the cover of Better Homes and Gardens! They were very reasonably priced, extremely fast (one-week turnaround) and amazingly talented. Even my neighbors asked for their info after seeing the magic they did at my place. I highly recommend Northwest Botanicals!-Susan

Posted in Beautiful gardens, Before and After | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Tiny town house garden transformed

Small town house garden in Ballard

Small gardens like this one in Seattle require extra attention to detail.

Design sketch

Our sketch shows what the new garden would be. 

Small Seattle garden

Before, the garden was so overgrown the patio was barely visible.

Small Seattle garden

After, the garden looks inviting even as fall moves into winter.

Small Seattle garden

The front steps were almost obscured by the large plants.

Small Seattle garden

After the cleanup the water feature is apparent but not very interesting.

Seattle small garden

Our design called for a dry stream bed leading to the water feature and plants that fit the size of the garden.

Posted in Beautiful gardens, Before and After | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Landscaping for curb appeal in West Seattle

Overgrown front garden

Our clients needed help getting their house ready to sell.


We pruned and cleaned up the front garden to make it appealing to potential buyers!


The front gravel walkway was weedy and overgrown.


Now it is a welcoming entry.

overgrown shrubs

The side yard was very overgrown.


Now it is bright and open.

Now it is bright and open.

The shrubs blocked the windows

Shrubs blocked the windows.

The shrubs have been tamed to let more light inside.

Posted in Beautiful gardens, Before and After, Pruning | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Expert Tips for Seattle Gardeners

We were very pleased to be included in this edition of Seattle Met Magazine:

Seattle Met

Expert Tips for Seattle Gardeners

21 local plant and landscape experts share their green-thumb and design secrets.

Published May 1, 2014
By Angela Cabotaje

Remember the Birds…Birds at water

A birdbath or stone basin can be a much-needed focal point in a garden that attracts birds year-round. Be sure to site it near a path instead of in a flower bed for easy cleaning and refilling. —Pat Reh, garden designer and general manager, Northwest Botanicals,

Follow this link to see the all of the expert garden tips.

Posted in Birds, Garden tips | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

West Seattle Garden Renovation


Our client wanted to turn his lack luster back yard into a place to relax and entertain.


This small West Seattle garden was dominated by a big leaf maple and moss and weeds.

West Seattle Garden renovation

With the addition of an outdoor rug and furniture, it will be a pleasant place to sit and entertain friends.


The back yard was just used for storage and to park the car.


Now it is a lush and colorful space.


The featureless back yard was uninviting.


Now the bark path beckons you into the tiny garden.

“Thank you again, Northwest Botanicals. I enjoyed working with you and am very pleased with the results.” – Craig

Posted in Beautiful gardens, Before and After | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Landscaping is for the birds in Seattle

I never set out to create a garden that would attract birds.  I created a garden for my enjoyment and it turns out that birds have been flocking to it for years.  Here is what I’ve learned about making a garden both people and bird friendly.

 Robin in callicarpa
Plant diversity – A variety of plants attract a variety of birds.  Many gardens are full and plentiful in the spring and summer but a garden with plants for all seasons is not only pleasing to people but a lifesaver for birds.  Plenty of berries and seeds to eat through the year keep birds happily near your garden or dropping by regularly.  Most winter blooming plants are very fragrant and entice people to stop by for a whiff. They also bring pollinating insects to the plants.  Insects provide much needed winter food for many birds and when the ground is frozen, these birds will appreciate the fall berries that still persist on many shrubs.  Winter bloomers also sustain hummingbirds that provide endless entertainment for people.
No chemicals – If you want to create a healthy ecosystem for yourself and family, leave the chemicals behind.  A well designed garden will have very little problem with pests because you will be working with Mother Nature instead of struggling against her.  Birds will be attracted to slugs and harmful insects and will keep the population in check without pesticides.  Plants get the nutrients they need from regular mulching with compost and limited organic fertilizers.  Chemical fertilizers produce rapid new growth which attracts an abundance of aphids.  Birds do a great job of keeping a normal population of aphids from getting out of hand.
 Birds in the snow
Shelter – A garden that is pleasing to the eye has many levels, from tall conifers to groundcovers.  In between are small trees, shrubs and herbaceous perennials.  These levels welcome many kinds of birds and provide them with shelter from the cold, protection from predators and places to look for food.
 Birds at water
Water – Every garden, especially a diverse one, needs focal points to give the human eye something to focus on.  Water features such as bird baths or rocks with depressions deep enough to collect water make a garden more interesting and provide needed water for birds and insects.
Bird watching in a low maintenance garden
Low maintenance – Saving the best for last, a diverse, layered and organic garden requires less time and money to maintain.  Be sure to put a bench in your garden so you can spend your free time enjoying your feathered friends.
Pat Reh is the General Manager of Northwest Botanicals Inc.  Most of her colleagues enjoy attracting birds to their gardens with one dedicated birder reporting 51 species in his small Seattle garden.                   
Posted in Beautiful gardens, Birds, Garden tips | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment