Garden Design



M  I  C  H  A  E  L  A    H  A  R  L  O  W

L  A  N  D  S  C  A  P  E       D  E  S  I  G  N

New England & New York.   By Appointment.

I am currently scheduling Design Consultations & Project Commissions for the 2024-2025 season and beyond.

Detail of 2020 Secret Garden with Stepping Stone Path.

D E S I G N   P H I L O S O P H Y

With more than 20 years experience designing landscapes in New England, I have come to understand that a beautiful, sustainable garden must work in harmony with both the natural environment and its inhabitants. Locally sourced hardscaping materials and zone-appropriate, native plantings form the backbone of my most successful landscape designs. Four-season garden design —featuring strong bones, color and textural interest that spans the entire year— is my greatest strength. Be they rural or urban, forest edge, open meadow or ledgy slope, my goal is to create low-maintenance gardens in the spirit of place.

 I enjoy creating all kinds of landscapes from formal to naturalistic. My specialties include; welcoming entry walks, landscaped stairs and slopes, secret gardens with walls and hedges, native wildflower sweeps, woodland gardens, shady nooks and serene, minimalistic gardens with modern and Japanese influences.

As an artist, I am interested in form, spacial relationships, texture, light and color. As a horticulturist, I have the experience needed to select the right plant for the right place. Creating beautiful, sustainable gardens is my passion.

Please email michaela(at)thegardenerseden(dot)com to schedule your appointment.

Gift certificates are available!

For information about the initial consultation process and complete garden & landscape design services, including installation, please scroll below.

Wildflower Meadow Border. Garden Design & Installation.

Sample: Garden Design Consultation Overlay Sketch – Living Fence/Meadow Garden Concept 

Garden & Landscape Design, Initial Consultation:

This is the first step toward the creation of a comprehensive, new garden or landscape design, improvement of an existing garden or landscape, or complete restoration/renewal of a neglected or overgrown property. The service includes a one hour site visit & meeting, followed by written notes, concepts and/or sketched ideas and recommendations sent via email.

The fee for this service starts at $350 for residential projects* and small commercial projects (*please see travel/mileage note below). Larger properties and projects are priced by size, complexity and day rate.

Please note that this fee is payable at the conclusion of our first meeting. Completed notes will be sent to you via email approximately two weeks after the initial consultation visit.

For some clients, a single consultation is all that is needed or desired. However, if you would like to continue working with me to develop a comprehensive garden design or landscaping plan, this initial meeting informs the next phase of our work together.

*On-site consultations are available throughout New England, however if the site is located more than 25 miles from Brattleboro, VT, additional travel costs will be applied based on mileage. Projects requiring more than a one hour site visit and/or lengthier notes will be assessed an additional, pro-rated, hourly fee.


Sample: Garden Design Consultation Overlay Sketch – Living Fence/Meadow Garden Concept Spring View

Layered Gardens with Retaining Walls by Curtis Gray

Hardscape Plan with Stonework for the First Phase of a Comprehensive Garden Design

Complete Garden & Landscape Design Plans:

Detailed Planning: Garden & Landscape Design Sketches, Drawings, Scale Planting Plans and Materials Lists

The process that begins with an initial consultation —as above— continues with a comprehensive garden or landscape design, planting plan and materials list. A complete design is essential for decision making, planning and gathering estimates. The design plan serves as a guide during both the process of installation and later, for ongoing maintenance. Depending upon the size, scope and complexity of the project, a completed design may include sketches and/or drawings, scale planting plans, and materials lists.

Total design costs will vary by size, scope and complexity of each individual project. Estimates are based on a studio day rate and are available after an initial consultation.

*For projects located 25 miles or more from Brattleboro, VT, travel costs will be applied based on mileage.

Secret Garden with Patio and Path


Assistance with installation of the completed garden or landscape design and/or project management —including selection of and collaboration with contractors & artisans — is available in New England and beyond. Upon request, I will personally install —or in the case of large landscape projects personally oversee the installation of— my garden designs. Because the complexity of installation and materials will vary with each individual project, estimates for personal installation or contracted services will not be available until after the garden or landscape design with planting plan and materials list has been completed, reviewed and accepted or modified by the client.

*For projects located 25 miles or more from Brattleboro, VT, additional travel costs will be applied based on mileage.

Outdoor Living Room: Goshen Stone Patio with Fire pit & Benches, surrounded by Gardens. Design & Installation.  Stonework by Curtis Gray.


Gardens are living works of art, and all properties —including gardens and landscapes designed for low maintenance— require seasonal care and upkeep. Although I no longer provide maintenance services, a detailed maintenance plan can be created for all garden design plans.

Require assistance with maintenance? Upon completion of your new garden, I would be happy to recommend carefully selected, professional gardeners, arborists and/or full-service landscape contractors in southern Vermont, southwestern New Hampshire and the Pioneer Valley area of Massachusetts.

Meadow Garden: Design and Installation

Gift Certificates:

Looking for a unique Wedding, House Warming, Mother’s/Father’s Day, Anniversary or Holiday Gift? A beautiful garden design makes an unforgettable memory.

Gift certificates are available for on-site Landscape & Garden Design Consultation and/or complete Garden Design.

Contact me by email for details: michaela (at) the gardeners eden (dot) com

*For projects located 25 miles or more from Brattleboro, VT, additional travel costs will be applied based on mileage.

Secret Garden Design and Installation. Stonework: Dan Snow