In consideration of the "stay home-stay healthy" mandate in Washington State together with recent clarification for those of us who work in horticulture, I am currently unable to offer on-site landscape consultations.
However, many of you have contacted me to ask if there is anything I can do to help you remotely since you are at home more than usual and this seems like the perfect time to get on with a few gardening projects – if only you knew where to start.
What I can help you with
- Assessing an existing garden bed to offer suggestions for improvement (colors, textures, form, structure, focal point, specific plant suggestions)
- Ideas to get you started if you are wanting to design a bed from scratch (shape, depth, key plant positions, discussion of soil preparation)
- Plant identification so you know what you've got (this will depend upon clear videos/photos)
- General gardening advice both for edibles and ornamentals
What I can't offer
- Detailed planting plans
- Ideas for large areas (see if you can break this down into smaller areas for now)
- Disease trouble shooting
- A typed synopsis of our discussion
How does this work?
We have a few options, depending on your phone (be sure it is fully charged!), phone reception, and internet speed.
The easiest option.
- You need an iPhone and decent cell reception plus a notebook and pen in your pocket
- I would call you at an agreed time using the FaceTime app.
- Initially we would review your questions and concerns together with design preferences and goals
- Then, in your garden you would shoot video of the area you want to discuss while talking to me at the same time. Be prepared to slow down and hold the camera still as directed as the video often jumps (buffers).
- You would need to put the phone down occasionally so you can write down notes.
- FaceTime does not have any time constraints
This one is relatively new for me but we'll figure it out!
- Similar to above but we would chat using the Zoom app which you would need to have installed on your phone (any brand of phone)
- I would host the meeting and send you an ID# that you would use to join the chat
- Free zoom calls are limited to 40 minutes but I believe I can set up multiple consecutive calls to allow us to extend that.
Email and Follow Up Call
This method is the most time consuming for both of us which will be reflected in the final invoice but is best for those with slow internet.
- You would send me a combination of up to 10 images/short video clips of the area in question together with an outline of your questions and concerns in a word document (NOT in the body of an email). These would need to be both the "big picture" view as well as close ups so I can identify individual plants. Limit each video clip to no more than 1 minute. For example 3 video clips (30 seconds, 45 seconds, 60 seconds) + up to 6 still images. You will need to send these to me via Dropbox to firstname.lastname@example.org. (They will be too large to send via email). I will allow up to 30 minutes to review this information. (If I can't see any of the images or videos clearly I will ask you for replacements)
- I will call you at a pre-arranged time. You will need to have your images and videos handy for viewing so I can refer to them by number/name (a computer screen or iPad will enable you to see more clearly than a phone screen).
- We will then discuss your project so that I can answer questions, offer advice and give suggestions etc. Assume 30-45 minutes for this call (in addition to the review time) depending upon the complexity of your project.
My consultation fee is $100/hour billable in 15 minute ($25) increments. A Square invoice will be emailed to you following our call and will be payable by credit card upon receipt.
Feel free to email me to set up an appointment or to ask for any further clarification.