Form & Function in the Landscape
Glass-walled sunroom in a contemporary landscape

The designed landscape is a balance between beauty and necessity, form and function. Any Architect will tell you that beauty is not enough – structure and practicality are also needed.  At the same time, design without attention to beauty is, well, never a good look.  We also love the opportunity to collaborate with other professionals to strike this balance, as in the above project realized with Architect Philip Volkmann and Contractor Walter Wehrli.  In designing space, it’s all about the experience.

Practically Speaking

Retractable windows in a dining area

We’ve come to the realization that necessity is absolutely the mother of invention. Whether we’re adding retractable windows to a sunroom for maximum flexibility, or adding plantings for seasonal interest, we problem-solve with the goal of making the most beautiful and interesting space possible. This is part of what makes our work so fun. When we look at every situation as a unique opportunity, inspiration really hits home!

Safety in the Landscape

Sheer descent fountain with safety net

Safety is top priority in all forms of design, and for our clients with multiple generations under one roof it is even more crucial. We are excited by the advances in pool covers and fencing that make safety guards easy to use and attractive! No more gaudy plastic eyesores. If a safety solution doesn’t exist, we simply invent it, as we did with this fountain net above. For the years that the family’s kids are toddlers, they can rest assured that their fountain is a safe place to explore.  Once the kids are grown, it’s a cinch to remove it entirely.

Sheer descent fountain in a contemporary stone garden wall

We don’t believe in sacrificing aesthetics for functionality, or the other way around.  Instead, we are always trying to bring the two into balance for the best of both worlds.  We find that the more we think ‘outside the box’ the more we are able to find solutions that work in every way.  In other words, we are always looking to improve, and we have pretty good evidence that if we keep at it, we usually find a solution!


Contemporary casual concrete terrace with kangaroo paw

Some of our team members love to multitask. Others of us find it completely overwhelming to do more than one thing at a time. Regardless of our personal style, we almost always make sure that our landscapes are multitasking. After all, we are already looking for all the potential available in a space – why not double or triple that potential? This cool contemporary terrace above multitasks in many ways. It uses benches and planting for safety in place of railings, so the barriers that keep you safe serve a double function. The planting also benefits from surface runoff when it rains, for a low-maintenance rain garden that brightens the space year-round. The mobility of furniture means that the terrace converts easily for family dinners, big parties, or stargazing sleepovers. What dreams are made of!

At J.Montgomery, we are privileged to design our clients’ spaces with all the care and attention they deserve.  Our team loves the process that goes into each custom landscape we create. We are always up to a new challenge, and we would love to hear from you!

Big shout-out to all the moms who celebrated yesterday – Every day should be your day!

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