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In 2015 we did a project on Draper St. in Toronto. If I were to show you pictures you wouldn’t believe me if I told you where this street was nestled. This historic street is below King Street, and west of Spadina. While many of us would go down this street with big eyes in awe that a street this picturesque and quaint exists in downtown Toronto, some – landscaping crews- aren’t as in impressed. Apparently getting to this site wasn’t always a treat, as the parking was a bit of a headache.

Moving forward from the fact that access to the site wasn’t ideal; the project itself was fun! It helps when your homeowner is great to work with. She knew what she wanted, and was great to be around. This homeowner wanted a Muskoka retreat in her small backyard oasis. So that is what D.A Gracey gave her! Large random flagstone pathway with a patio surrounded by plantings suggestive of Muskoka. We lit up the backyard path, specimen trees, and a focal point – the granite bubbling rock. The bubbling rock allowed for a low maintenance water feature, that creates an instant tranquil atmosphere with the sound of water. It was located by the seating area so you could hear the gentle bubbling.

The home owner wanted her backyard to be beautiful and low maintenance. D A Gracey set up automatic lighting for her, which can be turned on and off when she is out of town. We set up an irrigation system that means the stress of worrying about watering the new plant material was gone. This meant no headaches if she was travelling, and there was a heat spell that hit Toronto. The Muskoka plant material chosen for her back yard worked well with the existing conditions and that also lessened the threat of losing plant material.

We are excited to do the second phase of this Toronto Landscape in the near future. The homeowner decided to do the back yard first, and the front yard after some additional work to the home was done. While the back yard was all about ‘getting away’ and relaxing, the front yard will be much more formal. As Adam Gracey explained to the homeowner, “The backyard is for you, but the front yard is for you and your neighbours”. With Draper St being a historical street it is important to keep with the simplicity, and formal nature that the rest of the street has.

We are thrilled that our homeowner is enjoying her backyard oasis, and looking forward to the design and construction of the front yard, although not the parking tickets we are sure to get!