Our Specialized Services

My primary goal is to cultivate the natural beauty of your property whether a private or a public space using my architectural sense to integrate elements, style, form texture and color. My artistic gifts help make everything a unified harmony.

In recent years my work has focused on creating foundation plantings – and many are deer resistant and mostly native.

Yates Garden Design is Certified Organic by the New England Organic Farmers Association (NOFA)

The former director of Wave Hill, Kate French, said, “Gardens and landscapes are canvases on which we explore our evolving relationships to nature.”

Foundation Plantings, Residential and Public Landscapes, Ecological and Native Projects

  • Landscapes and Foundation Plantings – creates and atmosphere of natural beauty for your building and helps with the environment such as erosion and more.
  • Ecological, Native and Dry Landscapes – for the purpose of expanding biodiversity, habitat, and climate resilience in a water restricted era.
  • Wellness/Healing and Memory Gardens – Primarily public spaces which are give the visitor a sense of healing or invoke memories for the visitor.
  • Color Palette Designs- as Tricia Guild says, “To give people the confidence to live with colors and textures that we know will enrich their lives.”


Rain Gardens

Rain Gardens are of great environmental value as they capture and release water in a more purified form into the garden or landscape. Stormwater management resolution is importance to address the current environmental issues. We primarily suggest native plants, but non-natives plants can be considered to add variety to the landscape.

Some towns, such as Greenwich, CT require a rain garden on every new property development.

Shade and Woodland Gardens

Here we focus on architectural beds with  foliage that love shady conditions creating a rich diverse ecosystem. Mosses, ferns, tubers, corms, deer-resistant plants and  bulbs are ideal.Woody plants can serve as the backdrop to support flowering plants. A Japanese bonsai landscape can thrive in these conditions. Any form of a shade garden is vital to woodland ecological conservation.

” The garden path is designed to provide for ever-changing views, so no scene is duplicated, and the visitor experiences a wide variety of spaces.”–Shunmyo Masuno




Wild Gardens and Wildflower Meadows

Wildflower Meadows are rich with diversity and brimming with grasses, and are ideal for the preservation of native plants. They create beautiful views from a building or home’s interior. Meadows can preserve the original landscape with the addition of dramatic flora.

Wave Hill features a wild garden which the effect is meant to be as if “planted by nature.”  The maintenance required for a wild garden can be low.

Often, both wild gardens and wildflower meadows have open borders to enhance spaciousness and compliment surrounding views.

Getting to know wildflowers adds a new layer to the way you experience the world.” – Sarah Raven

Formal, Walled or Secret Gardens 

Traditional gardens require more care than wild gardens. Formal Gardens flourished in the Renaissance period of France and Italy and originated in the deserts of Western Asia. They are typically elegant and formal and surrounded by walls. Such gardens are methodically planned to emphasize strong axial lines, structure, and geometric shapes with pleasurable repetition to create a well-balanced landscape. Sumptuous perennial borders are layered with texture, color and soft forms, and might include Japanese Irises, peonies and masses of lavender and roses. Focal points are made with vertical elements are accentuated with climbers, sculpture, fountains or other focal points.

Secret gardens are a quiet place for retreat or contemplation. Their focus is on mystery and intimacy, and include water features, seating and benches, and planting schemes brimming with colors and textures.

Herbal and Potager Gardens

We can create either rich, formal herb gardens or informal herbaceous and perennial border gardens .A potager is an ornamental kitchen garden, with ground level patterns within a geometric framework.

In either herb garden we can include spices for cooking or health, annual or perennial herbs for teas, or culinary herbs, or purely decorative species like ornamental cabbages. Fruit trees, soft fruits such as grapes, raspberries, black- and blueberries, currants, rhubarb, gooseberries, tomatoes and cucumbers can be planted. Beans and peas are valuable for their beneficial nitrogen-fixing abilities. Edible flowers such as violas, stevia, pansies, chives, and nasturtiums are vitamin-rich and tasty.


Summer Annual Cutting Garden

Cutting gardens may contain both annual and perennial plants. which bloom during the summer and are known for their vibrant color and fragrances. We can design these gardens for maximum and extended cutting potential. Some favorites are dahlias, sunflowers, zinnias, marigolds, cosmos, nasturtiums, and rudbeckias. For cutting shrubs, we favor viburnum, dogwood, witch hazel, shadbush, lilacs and Chinese lantern. Bulbs to consider are allium, fritillaria, iris and tulips.


Warm & Dry Mediterranean Paradise Garden

To create the quintessential dry garden, use cypress trees or structural trees with rich and strong colors, planted herbaceous beds, grasses, tiles, curves and gravel paths. Courtyard gardens are either open or cloistered, creating entertaining space. For the ultimate escape, we can add architectural outdoor lighting or candles, Greek or Italian terra-cotta pots, scented hedges, silver-leaf plants, subtropical specimens, rough-hewn textures, and the gentle sounds of cascading water.

Succulents, one of the most fascinating tribes of plants for the indoor culture, have become immensely popular in recent years. They appeal particularly to persons who appreciate the whimsicalities and curiosities of plant life.” Dry garden expert, Ruth Bancroft — The Bold Dry Garden



Indoor and Outdoor Rooms–Connecting Spaces and Creating Unity


Bernard Trainor has said that the house and the garden are essential to each other. A garden is a sanctuary at the heart of the home. It is important to establish connection with the house and the outdoor space. Greenhouses, covered walkways, pergolas – complete with a windrow – and stone terraces evolve into two spaces, becoming a transition space as well as an outdoor room. Adding seasonal plantings creates an ambiance of beauty and serenity.

One of the most important design elements is the procession through space – especially when you want to link different spaces. We can create a borrowed view, move from formality to informality or transform what is existing to a new paradigm. Outdoor living spaces may have permanent seating, lighting, and be enclosed by a walls, creating an area of relaxation and retreat. Sun porches with a covered roof are a vital design component for providing cooling shade. This is a room located in nature, conveying all its beauty.


Sundial and Moon Gardens 

Sundial Gardens naturally feature a sundial, which is typically placed in the most formal garden room so that it becomes a focal point.

Moon or Evening Gardens include flowering plants that open or release their aromas after the sun has gone down, and can include hardier northern plants. This garden style is always romantic, light and flowing.

“The glowing silver moon is a symbol of clarity in the black night,”  goes a Buddhist saying.

The moon may be at its most beautiful when it is reflected in a source of water. In Japan, both the sun and the moon are considered “borrowed elements.” Rich scents are important in the Western version of this garden, which we provide with lilies, honeysuckle, lady’s trumpets, jasmine, gardenia, and roses.


Rock and Gravel Garden Design 

One doesn’t pass time in a rock garden – in a rock garden, time stops altogether.” Panayoti Kelaidis

In a rock garden, we focus on seasonal color and use a range of alpine plants and other harmonious species. The miniature rhododendron is much like a bonsai – delicate and glorious. Whether you commission a rockery or a rock garden, we design to the fullest potential of the site. We use differing perennials for shade, part-sun and full sun environments. Rounded rocks of different sizes and shapes add support and are moved to be properly situated or outsourced. The culmination is synergy of ecological diversity, and a feast for the eyes.





Container Gardens Designs 

Using one-of-a-kind vessels or colors which bring harmony and are brimming with innovative plant combinations are the hallmarks of a container garden. These are customized for your needs, adding weight, color and  seasonal interest. Used within an architectural design, container gardens can be focal points and provide balance for a larger garden. Mosquito repellant plantings can be moved on and off the patio. Herbal and edible plantings are located outside the kitchen door.

Weathered troughs make great container gardens when filled with alpines, dwarf plants, cyclamens, bulbs, corms, and bonsai, seasonally rich and flowering plants.

We can help sell your home with our container home staging for both the interior and exterior

Wetlands, & Preservation Habitats 

“Wetlands need to be promoted as integral components of the larger waterscape landscape.” – Robert France

Wetlands are critical because of their ability to renew the environment. As conservation sites, they may need restoration or removal of invasive species. Staggering the waterfront edge to a higher capacity can help increase the amount of exposed area.

These areas can provide a wide diversity of flora and fauna. Typically five types of plant growth is ideal for a created wetland. Whether planning a pond, improving wetlands, building a rain garden or adding stones for salamanders, we can help you. If possible, always retain a bog or wetland – we can turn it into a paradise of wide and exciting range of water-loving plants.

Coastal & Exposed Gardens

“Many plants that grow well in coastal areas are species that also thrive in mountain areas, or dry inland areas.” – Noel Kingsbury

Plants, trees and shrubs provide structure and endurance for a garden, avoiding erosion and plant desiccation, and offer protection from high winds, sun, and salt water. Dunes and exposure belts accomplish the same goal. Plants situated on bluffs always help reinforce the terrain.

If your property bakes in the sun, we can provide plants that are extremely hardy or xeriscape (drought-resistant).  With ocean views, we can provide a more dramatic design to frame their beauty with wind-, and salt-tolerant plants.

Jennifer Yates won the Golden Trowel Award for the best urban landscape design in Greenwich, CT.


Diverse & Climate Change Resistant Landscapes – “The more you increase the diversity of what you grow the more resilient the land becomes.” – Mark Diacono

In Sarah Stein’s garden, there is a natural succession from shade garden to formal garden to wildflower woods to meadow to very little cultivated lawn. Plants are placed in groups or drifts as they would be found in nature.

Restorative and Contemplation Gardens

Healing and Zen Landscapes are for body, mind and spirit alignment. These highly personal gardens are usually soulful, with simplicity of arrangement and yin and yang balance. Taken into consideration are selected plants, herbs and water features that work with nature’s harmonic resonance to create energetic alignment. The workings of the cosmos itself may be a part of a Japanese garden design. The idea to stroll through nature and become immersed in the elements of nature therefore nature restores you with her sublime beauty and essence.