Landmark Landscapes of Sheboygan Falls, WI awarded the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) Gold Award of Excellence for a project titled “The Great Lake Garden.”
The Great Lake Garden, installed in Sheboygan, Wisconsin is an example of when beauty and function meet in the center. This project began in the spring of 2016 when the client approached our firm with a challenge to restore their patio which was constructed atop an eroding bluff that overlooks Lake Michigan. What evolved was a highly technical landscape with multiple gardens designed to manage stormwater and mitigate the eroding bluff.
Each year, the National Association Landscape Professionals Awards of Excellence recognizes exceptional landscape, lawn care, and interior plantscape design projects from around the nation. In 2020, 110 awards were bestowed for maintenance, design/build or contracting projects.
Joe Majerus, designer of this project and an owner of the firm said, “I am very excited for Landmark Landscapes to be recognized by the National Association of Landscape Professionals by being awarded the Gold Award of Excellence. This speaks to the hard work, dedication and attention to detail of our team and to the trust and loyalty of our clients. To receive a national award illuminates the values we share as a company and the focus and dedication we have for our craft.”
The Great Lake Garden consists of three separate garden spaces – The Terrace Garden, The Walking Meditation Garden and the Reflection Pond. Each of these gardens fool the admirer with their beauty shifting the focus away from their ability to manage stormwater in the landscape.
When the Terrace Garden was constructed it was equipped with drains so that storm water could be captured and deposited into an 8” pipe – running from the street below and carried into the municipal storm system. The drains on the patio are disguised with Mexican Beach Stones and go unnoticed in the landscape.
Following the successful renovation of the terrace the clients were inspired to continue creating new garden spaces around their home. What ensued was the creation of the Walking Meditation Garden and the Reflection Pond.
The intent of the Walking Meditation Garden was to utilize every inch of the space to take the visitor on a journey, a peaceful stroll through the garden. Unlike many meditation gardens, this one is unique in that it is meant to be walked in, not sat in. The clients do not like sitting still. They begin their day eating their breakfast while walking through this garden.
The drainage challenge for the Walking Meditation Garden, was that the water from the driveway all shed into this space. Here the solution was to capture the stormwater and use it in the waterfall feature placed in the middle of the garden. In a storm event the overflow is funneled into a pipe and again feeds into the municipal storm system.
Much like the Terrace Garden, the intention of the Reflection Pond was to be enjoyed not only from the outside, but from the inside as well. That said, the depth of this project goes far deeper than simply its beauty. It is a highly functional garden, as it captures two-thirds of the storm water run off from the roof of the home.
When the Reflection Pond was designed, a sustainable solution was sought. In this instance the pond was used to capture a majority of the runoff from the roof of the home. The stormwater feeds the reflection pool so water never has to be filled using city water. In a storm event any overflow spills into an 8” pipe that leads to the municipal storm system.
The opportunity to be a recipient of the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) Gold Award of Excellence is very exciting and gratifying. It reinforces our commitment to creating excellent landscapes with inspired people.