Tomi was great to work with on the design of my garden. We were starting with a completely clean slate and she was very good visualizing the possibilities and providing different ideas on options available and ways of achieving our objectives. She provided a lot of pictorial material to help in plant selection and provided literally carloads of samples for making decisions about hardscaping. We also did a lot of work on runoff control including installation of three large raingardens and she also did an excellent job of integrating them into the overall garden design…”
— Rob C., Palisades Neighborhood, Washington DC
We could not be happier with the garden Tomi created for us. When we first met with her in the spring of 2015, we were despairing of finding a way to deal with our new home’s very challenging backyard. For 40 years, a succession of owners had tried unsuccessfully to grow a lawn in an extremely shady and buggy area with poor drainage and very shallow maple roots; by the time we moved in, the lawn was basically a weed patch, surrounded by rusty chain link fence and a huge stand of very entrenched bamboo. We consulted a number of well-regarded designers, but to our frustration everyone tried to push a new lawn on us, even though we said up front that didn’t want one.
Tomi was the first person we spoke to who was excited by the possibility of doing something different. She was not deterred by challenges–ranging from budget constraints to difficult site conditions–but rather seemed energized by them. Moreover, she was the only person we spoke to who was truly observant and thoughtful about our tastes (mid-century design, for example) and our needs as a family (the spaces she designed function beautifully for entertaining and play alike).
The final product–a multi-“room” back garden with an ipe deck and built-in seating, a fire pit, bluestone pavers, wood privacy screens, new fencing, and a series of regraded plant beds featuring improved drainage and native plantings–has vastly exceeded our hopes. It is not an exaggeration to say that the garden Tomi created has dramatically expanded our living space and enhanced our lives.
— Kate J., Chevy Chase, Maryland
We are very happy we hired Tomi at Landis Garden Design. She took our kind of blah and boring expanse of mossy grass, weeds and sagging brick walk that was our front yard and terraformed it into a mini nature preserve. We’ve been through one entire seasonal cycle and enjoyed the surprise of a different set of native plants blooming in turn each season.
We have a challenging West facing site at the bottom of a hill. Tomi was not only great at recommending plants for the various levels of sun and soil quality our site offered, but proved to be a wizard with creative storm water management (while keeping that water on our site). This is evidenced by our much nicer reworked front walk (with reworked grade to keep water away from the foundation) and a circular rock garden in an especially shaded area of our yard where water had pooled and where little had grown.
The installers that Tomi worked with and oversaw were professional and everything was reasonably priced. We would recommend Landis Garden Design without reservation.
— Michael G., Chevy Chase, Maryland
We hired Tomi Landis to help us address water issues in our backyard. She created a plan that completely transformed our backyard, using native plants and trees, rocks, and swales to channel water away from our house. Her garden design plan was executed under her careful and attentive eye and we were thrilled with the results. We now have an outdoor space where our children can play, an attractive pea gravel patio for entertaining, and a lovely garden.
— Andrea R., Palisades Neighborhood, Washington DC
We hired Tomi Landis in the summer of 2014 to help design and install landscaping at the house we recently bought. We wanted someone who specializes in native plants and bird-friendly environments, and Tomi was the only person who responded to our queries!
She’s very knowledgeable about all kinds of plant & garden issues, is full of ideas and recommendations (which is what we really needed) and is extremely professional. Tomi did a property survey and marked off our land. She then brought over photo books and information, examples from other jobs she’d done, and did several sketches showing possible layouts around our property. She was interested in how we wanted to use the space, not just what flowers we liked. (If anything we were short on expressing a lot of ideas because we had not yet lived in the house!) She then provided several written proposals that clearly spelled out what plants would be used (referenced to the sketches), their cost, and the cost of labor. Doing revisions to accommodate our preferences, or to reduce costs, was no problem at all.
The first installation phase was in the Fall. Tomi brought over an excellent crew (who we have since used ourselves) and actually supervised the work! At that time we put in ten trees and dozens of bushes and shrubs. She provided written instructions for care and watering, plus continued advice. Tomi also told us about a county program that gives rebates for managing storm water runoff on the property and we were able to recoup several thousand dollars just by following her suggestions on adding berms!
In Spring of 2015 we finished the planned installation, which included several more trees and some other plants. Tomi also guarantees her plants, if they have been installed and maintained correctly, and she has replaced several that had failed for various reasons (other than the extreme winter).
Those of us with little gardening experience, not knowing what to expect, might worry about problems with the plants, or wonder if it will turn out okay. All along Tomi was (and continues to be) responsive, willing to give advice, and always encouraging about the ways of the natural world. She was honest about needing a few years to see the full potential of the plantings, so we are looking forward to the eventual result!
As for cost, this was a fairly large job, so not inexpensive, but we did not find her fees, cost for plants, or installation labor, to be outside of what we expected. In the end we liked Tomi and her professional approach so we never looked further!
— Eric & Kim, Olney, Maryland
Landis Garden Design delivered in every way an exceptional experience. From the exquisite garden design to her doggedness in working with installers and contractors to her persistence in navigating city channels for tree rebates to save money, Tomi Landis made the process collaborative, stress-free and fun. Apparently Tomi was an Emmy Award-winning producer in a prior career, and she brought all the skills of a producer (on time, on budget, jaw-droppingly beautiful) to my landscape job. She was out in muddy boots for hours in freezing rain to ensure that the work was being done exactly to her environmental-friendly specifications, and then she has stopped by on several occasions long after the job was done to check on plants and drainage and troubleshoot small wrinkles. I had thought at one time that a garden designer would be a needless expense and I could go right to a installer, but I couldn’t haven’t been more wrong. Every penny for Landis Design was money well spent.
— Cynthia B., Washington DC
Tomi did an excellent job in designing and executing our large scale project covering the double lot back area and the two side areas of the house, within budget.
The key requirement for our project was to manage the flooding, provide pathway for the rain water and design and plant a new garden. Specifically Tomi built a swale to absorb and convey downspout water on the side of the house that also acted as a pathway. On the other side, a bio-swale planted with native trees, shrubs and ground covers and a rain garden at the bottom of the stairs and fully landscape the backyard with a perimeter garden.
She provided us clear technical explanations of the rain water management techniques, leveraged DC’s program to help its residents with rain gardens, instituted best environmental practices using native species, designed and built a beautiful garden for us.
We are enjoying our decision of hiring Tomi everyday! She went the extra mile to explain the project to our neighbors on both sides. I would highly recommend Tomi for any landscaping project.
— Lalita S., Chevy Chase, DC
We hired Landis Garden Design to renovate our back garden, which had become overgrown and unappealing. We replaced the shaded scraggly lawn with a wonderful hardscape patio, removed the overgrown plantings, and started over. We could not be more pleased with the result and with Landis Garden Design. Tomi is an accomplished multi-tasker. She works quickly, efficiently and collaboratively and fulfills all promises. She created an excellent design and chose beautiful and interesting plant materials. Our back is so much more open and inviting.
— Dia S., Spring Valley Neighborhood, Washington DC
We’ve been working with Tomi Landis/ Landis Garden Designs for about 9 months now. We initially hired Tomi to help us learn our way around the existing landscaping of the house we bought last spring and install some terraced beds. During the process, Tomi told us about DC’s RiverSmart program and she eventually installed our BayScape through the program. Several neighbors have told us how much they like the transformation. She is very responsive and professional, and overall we are quite pleased with the work she has done for us.
— Katie S., Crestwood Neighborhood, Washington DC
Landis Garden Design designed and installed a rain garden, re-landscaped my back yard with new plant beds and sod, and removed a pond and replaced with a peastone/pebbled dining area. They arrived when scheduled, and completed work on time, and if there were any issues, response and resolution was quick and efficient. Follow up with replacement plants and answering questions about maintenance was helpful and swift.
— Suzanne C., Chevy Chase, DC