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Consultation Process

The Consultation Process
Initial Consultation
Consultation Fees

The Consultation Process

Hello, I am Elaine Hutson, and most of the pictures you see on my web page are of my garden. This garden is 27 years old, and is constantly changing for the better; this is true of any well-designed garden. Gardens take time to mature, unless you are doing perennials and roses. The gardens I design have year around interest, even if it is in a small suburban lot. The pictures of my customer's garden are anywhere from three to six years.

In order to design a beautiful garden, you have to have a thorough knowledge of plants. For example:
  • Does it like the sun or shade?
  • Will it look nice on a flat piece of land or on a berm?
  • How tall and wide does it get?
  • What form does it have?
  • How will it fit in the color scheme?
  • Will it look nice after it finishes blooming?

In the case of perennials, some of the questions you would ask are:
  • How long does it bloom?
  • Is it weedy?
  • Does it need to be divided every three years?

About maintenance:
  • How involved do you want to be?
  • Do you want to learn how to take care of your garden?
  • Do you want something nice looking with minimal care?
A garden is a work of art, and all my customers get a custom design, whether it is formal or informal.

Initial consultation includes:
    • Assessment of soil & needed amendments
    • Assessment of sun & shade exposure on property
    • Consideration of design & scale of landscape in relation to style of house
    • Measurements of garden beds and layouts of lawn and/or ground covers
    • Collaboration with customer for choices of colors and any plant preferences
    • Recommendations for hardscapes and artwork
    • Lifestyle customization in regards to maintenance committment
    • Recommendations for do-it-yourselfers for soil ammendments, soil nutrients, pruning, etc.
    • Discuss of budget for single or multi-phased landscaping schedule
  1. Plants purchased and delivered by Landscapes in Living Color and placed in appropriate location per established design layout. Consultation provided to landscaper/customer for planting requirements for each plant as well as the care of each plant such as pruning, liming, and fertilization.
  2. Follow up consultation recommended in spring and fall for assistance with maintaining landscape successfully.

Consultation Fee:

$55 per hour. Work with any budgets/phases. "You will not have to adopt me!"
Initial consulation charges will include drive time to your residence or business (one-way).

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Elaine Hutson is master gardener consulting in Portland, Oregon. Elaine has over 27 years of landscaping design experience and frequently gives garden tours of her gardens. Elaine's garden has been reviewed in the Oregonian and Gresham Outlook Newspaper as well as Better Homes and Gardens Magazine.
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