Andrew Keys, Landscape Designer
I would like to introduce a landscape designer to potential buyers of Clark Hill Woods lots. His name is Andrew Keys and he has the credentials, the passion, and the experience to be your consultant, landscape designer, and perhaps even provide advice on organic vegetable gardening if you have an interest in learning more about that. He feels very strongly about utilizing plants, shrubs, etc. that are either native to the area or are so easily acclimated that they need little or no tending, fertilization, etc. Some are drought tolerant, others may be most at home in moister areas. Some allow you to cut down on or eliminate the need for mowing a lawn which can be a cumbersome task. Ground covers can be beautiful, low or no maintenance, have lovely blue or other colored flowers; others may just provide a soft bed of green that is low to the ground, like grass, but need virtually no maintenance. If you love flowering plants, there are many natives that can be utilized. You will have an extraordinary or a modest yard that can meet your every expectation while creating minimal disturbance to your natural surroundings. Some plants attract birds and/or butterflies or repel pests; others can provide foods for your family, and some are just lovely to look at. Below, in Andrew’s own words, is an introduction to what he is about.
“I think [in] this century, the 21st century, the most inspiring element is the fragility of Earth.” –- Renzo Piano.
My name is Andrew Keys, and the land is in my blood. My work is informed by an interdisciplinary background in design and strategic planning, everyday skill and passion for all things green and growing. I started Oakleaf Green Landscape Design in 2009, with the philosophy that the crux of every 21st century design problem is our role as stewards of the Earth.
I was born in the bottomlands of Mississippi, a stone’s throw from New Orleans. Descended from dairymen, cotton and cane farmers, I spent childhood summers roaming barefoot through thickets of mountain laurel and star anise, swamp honeysuckle, and doghobble. From my family, I inherited a reverence for the land passed down through generations. From my studies, I learned of botany, biology, ecology, and conservation.
Most importantly, I learned to garden.
I set aside my green thumb for a period in college, earning a degree in journalism and public relations from The University of Memphis in 2001. Around that time I first traveled to New England and realized I had found my home. I moved to Boston, worked in public relations and then in non-profit as a graphic designer. While young in my career, I sought new ways to see the natural world both at home, through graduate studies in architecture and urban policy, and abroad, traveling everywhere from the Grand Canyon to the Great Barrier Reef.
In the end, I returned to my first loves: the environment and the garden.
I hope you’ll join me on this journey.
Contributor :: Fine Gardening Magazine
Accredited Organic Landcare Professional ‘09 :: Northeast Organic Farming Association
Graduate Certificate, Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning ‘05 :: Tufts University
Bachelor of Arts, Journalism and Public Relations ‘01 :: The University of Memphis
Certificate in Native Plant Horticulture and Design :: New England Wildflower Society
Entry filed under: Build a green home in NH, Conservation, Sustainable Design, Wildlife, Woodland. Tags: attracting birds, ground covers, landscape design, Landscaping, minimal disturbance, native plants, New England Wildflower Society, Oakleaf Green Landscape Design, organic gardening, Organic Landcare, wildflowers.