SERVICES (Design, Installation Assistance, Stewardship, Educational Programs)


GNL is a design only company. This gives you the flexibility to do the work yourself,  work with the installation and maintenance contractors we use, or use your own landscape contractor, when you are ready. We can develop a design plan for a section of your yard or the entire yard. A nature-based design can also include patios, walkways, raised bed vegetable gardens, compost areas, and other structures.  Our “ABOUT” page summarizes our nature-based landscape goals. Below is our design process.

  1.  Initial email/phone conversation to see if we’re a good fit. Email an optional questionnaire before onsite meeting. 1 hour, No charge
  2.  Onsite meeting to discuss your project and ideas together while walking your property.  1-2 hours, No charge.
    We are scheduling intial meetings for Spring 2021. Spring is our busiest season.  COVID-19 slowed our process in 2020, and may do so in 2021. Thank you for your patience!
  3.  If you’d like, we will email a detailed design planning estimate for $100, 2-3 hours. The $100 estimate cost is subtracted from the design costs if you move forward with a design. Design planning costs depend on complexity, size, goals, existing plants to work around, problems to be resolved, etc. Photos are helpful, especially when designing in early spring or winter, or for problem areas. 
  4. Upon acceptance of our estimate, we schedule your design plan
  5. Design planning begins by revisiting your property to collect more data, developing high level design plan for review. Then developing the final detailed final plan with supporting documents.
  6. We present your final design plan in person or online. We’ll also discuss installation options, and collect final payment. Our installation assistance services are described below.


We provide hourly onsite consultation for a smaller existing area ( less than 100-150 sq feet) for 2 hours minimum. Consultations will give plant design suggestions for the area, and maybe include a quick sketch.  For larger, complex or multiple areas, you’ll be happier with a well thought out, nature based design plan described above.


With design plan in hand, you have the flexibility to install yourself, hire one of the independent landscape contractors we work with, or use your own contractor, when you’re ready.  Our installation assistance service is highly recommended to ensure a successful installation, saving money and time. This service includes any or all of the following: overseeing the quoting process, review plant and materials with contractor, and being onsite during the installation as needed to ensure design intent is followed. We also share our eco-friendly installation techniques for the do-it-yourselfer.  Hourly charge

GARDEN COACHING / STEWARDSHIP (for design clients)

Stewardship is environmentally friendly maintenance. This is not traditional maintenance. Stewardship is important the first 3-5 years, and on an ongoing basis. If you need help getting started, we can schedule a visit and work together with you as a garden coach. If you’d need stewardship help on an ongoing basis, we can share contractor names.  Hourly charge. We also share stewardship tips on  our Notebook blog and Facebook pages.


We give educational programs December-March to garden clubs, nurseries, environmental organizations such as The Green Earth Institute, Wild Ones ,Wild Things Conference, College of DuPage, The Conservation Foundation etc. Call for fees,  descriptions & available dates. Topics:

  • Rain Gardens – Tips and Common Mistakes (1 hour)
  • Gardening with Native Plants through the Seasons (1 1/4 hour) – With over 15+ years of designing and gardening with native plants, Denise shares which native plants are good for most gardens, are readily available at local plant sales and nurseries, as well as helpful design and rain garden tips, and important wildlife-plant relationships.

We'd love to help you and the environment!

Please contact us if you are interested in our services or have questions. Thank you.

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