Home & Design

Deer-tolerant plantings, selected to bloom in summer, include crape myrtles and ornamental grasses.

A raised ipe boardwalk that appears to be on grade leads to the front door.

Travertine pool coping and a nearby pergola offer shade and additional seating.

Bayfront Retreat

An eco-friendly escape in St. Michaels promotes laid-back living

Reimagining the grounds of a longtime client’s summer residence in St. Michaels, Maryland, landscape architect Matt Rhoderick of McHale Landscape Design encountered unique challenges that also presented design opportunities.

The owners requested a casual pool and entertainment area, along with enhanced plantings throughout the property. The home’s location on a creek off the Miles River meant that Rhoderick’s design had to satisfy setback regulations and other rules mandating a reduction in impervious materials to prevent runoff.

A raised ipe boardwalk that appears to be on grade leads to the front door, while a willow oak stands sentinel, accompanied by low, colorful plantings. Rhoderick sited the backyard pool to maximize views of the creek while meeting the county’s 100-foot setback requirement. The pool was elevated and ipe decking allows for catch basins and drains underneath that carry water away from the house and pool. Travertine pool coping and a nearby pergola offering shade and additional seating create a casual, contemporary mood. An evergreen backdrop provides privacy from neighboring properties.

Yarrow and salvia at the entrance give way to knockout roses and nepeta by the parking courtyard. Deer-tolerant plantings, selected to bloom in summer, include crape myrtles and ornamental grasses that sway in the breeze. They blend with existing plants and trees to strengthen the maturity of the garden.

Award: Grand for Total Residential Contracting. Landscape Architecture & Contracting: Matt Rhoderick, McHale Landscape Design, Upper Marlboro, Maryland.

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