Exterior Decorating
A local family’s vibrant yard creates a landscape that Awakens Healing

Exterior Decorating

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Deatrick LaPointe (center) works in Technology Management and is pursuing a Ph.D. in Cyber Defense. Erica Hardy (left) has been educating children with disabilities and teaching academics and life skills for over a decade. They grew up locally and graduated from Aberdeen Central. They are engaged to be married in the Fall of 2022. Their daughter, Adriana, will begin her sophomore year of high school this fall.

Everyone generally knows that gardening is very therapeutic. Being outdoors, getting dirty, and watching the fruits of your labor revealed before your eyes is very satisfying. Soon to be married, Deatrick LaPointe and Erica Hardy find great joy and calmness in creating an outdoor living space that teases the eyes and is just simply joyful to behold. You might gaze upon a lovely pot with several different types of flowers and be surprised to see a pair of eyeballs looking back at you. All the plantings throughout their front and backyards are accented by little creatures, funky props, and everyday objects coated with vibrant color. 

You might think a yard with this much variety and fullness would be anything but relaxing. In fact, it’s sort of opposite of what everyone seems to want in landscaping — no maintenance. Well, they have lots of maintenance, but that’s part of the therapeutic tending they enjoy so much. They try to get everything planted by mid-June to enjoy blooms by July. Admittedly, life gets in the way, and it’s not unusual for them to plant at midnight under moonlight instead of sunlight to get everything in.

They make their planting selections based on research about a plant or flower’s origins or what they have come to represent. Orange for example (which will be the dominant color of their wedding) brings change and signals a bright future. They change things up every year and Deatrick points out, “Planting flowers is like growing seeds of life; when you harvest the full potential of each flower, you perceive a new view of life in what that specific flower represents. That is how our garden evolves; new changes bring new ideas and choices, we want our choices to be aligned with our family, vision, and goals.”

They have taken care to plant and place pots in strategic locations around the yard considering tree and house shade, fencing, turf, and patio space. They remain aware of the soil conditions by supplementing with new soil yearly, then plant perennials and annuals based on the resiliency of each variety.

Most people probably stroll through the greenhouses in the spring and select things they like. Deatrick and Erica take a more in-depth approach. They chose flowers based on their ideas, colors, and themes they’ve researched. Deatrick says, “You learn flowers have Latin names and common-sense personalities when you start reading about them. Let their color, name, history, and characteristics mean something about who you are as well as your family and community.”

For as whimsical as their garden is, Deatrick and Erica certainly appreciate the natural beauty their garden gives back. They recommend talking to people who care about a vision for what a garden looks like and how it evolves during the season. They say be mindful of what real, living, artfully arranged plants bring to the fulfillment of life, and just dive in. Trust your instinct, work your intellectual and naturally artistic muscles. Deatrick says, “Evolve that vision every season. Remember, what you plant helps you, your family, and the entire community. Appreciate and enjoy the season.” //