Our Story

Eco-yards™ was founded on the belief that we should leave the land we steward in better shape than we found it. Life on earth depends on the vitality of the topsoil and the plants that grow in it. We can enrich the soil and enliven the energy of the places we steward by using sustainable landscaping methods. And we can create colourful, fragrant, life-enhancing, soul-enriching spaces. In this way we create a healthier, more beautiful, and fruitful world.

We threw some challenges your way and you really were able to develop a plan that met all of our needs and all of our wants. Your crew was great. Every day they showed up (with) big smiles on their face. It was having a big joyous group to do quite hard labour – to dig and haul – it was fun to have them in the yard and work with them – it was great!

Ryan L’Heureux

I’m so enamoured with the philosophy of your company. Everybody that’s worked for you Laureen – and I know that you handpick them so specially – has just done an awesome job. They’re polite, they’re kind, we always have great talks and we have always had this real harmony with the staff. The pleasure was all mine.

Virginia Clark

 I have appreciated the people you employ. They seem to be knowledgable, appropriately compensated, and basically happy.

Catherine Kneppers

In 2015, 2016 and 2020, Eco-yards did design and install work for Dianne D. Over this period, we have done maintenance work for her yard at times, regularly spray it with our compost tea spray and provide our compost tea tree treatment service for one of her front yard trees. 
Here is what she has to say about Eco-yards:
I found Laureen’s work to be of excellent quality.  From the design work at the beginning of the project, to the actual installation (and through the inevitable challenges that come with a client not being able to identify all personally important factors from the outset), Laureen and her staff were accessible, responsive to questions, and willing to adjust ‘the plan’ to accommodate my revised thinking. As a client, it was important to me to be able to ask questions and have them answered effectively and accurately; Laureen did so consistently. She communicates clearly with clients and her staff.
The quality of Laureen’s work was reflected throughout the project, from the quality of the materials she used, to the efforts she made to ensure ‘customer satisfaction’ through care and attention to details, to communicating clearly with her crew working in the yard, and so on.  I greatly appreciated that her crew members were polite, engaging, quiet (no loud music or swearing), and that she interacted well with each of them (mutual respect is evident).
Laureen is responsible. She recognized that the trellis that was installed in the front of my house was too short. She had her crew remove the trellis and install the correct one. I may not have caught this error, but in any event, Laureen rectified the matter before I even had to ask about it.
Laureen has proven to have good business ethics (treats customers fairly and with honesty).
Dianne D.

OUR 2020 ECO-YARDS CREW

Laureen loves plants! Go for a walk with her around a classic Eco-yard to learn about the hardy plants she uses in Calgary.

Laureen Rama

Owner

My lifelong passion is beautifying landscapes in ways that enhance the natural environment. I have been landscaping most of my life, from helping my parent’s landscape yards as a child, in towns across Western Canada, to beautifying landscapes as an adult. Traveling and living in different landscapes around the world and North America has inspired my designs.

I love flowers, especially designing landscapes with hardy, perennial flowers to provide colour and joy all growing season long. I also love delighting my clients with landscape designs that go beyond their desires and bring them more than they imagined. This involves listening, intuition and sharing ideas.

I’ve taken courses, read lots of books and magazines, visited and spoken to gardeners whenever and wherever I can, and experimented with what works and what doesn’t in many different kinds of yards.

I have worked as an international development educator, public involvement consultant, management consultant specializing in creativity, and as a shamanic healer and teacher.

I work with a crew and sub-contractors who love the earth and beauty and pleasing clients too!

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Kaleigh Schmidt

Designer and Supervisor 

Kaleigh Schmidt is a Landscape Designer, graduated from Fanshawe College in Ontario through the ‘Landscape Design’ degree program. Passionate about bringing nature into the yards of many she continued her education, getting certified through The Living Centre in Permaculture Design, Forest Gardening, Food Foresting, as well as ‘Shamanu’ an earth wisdom mentorship.

Kaleigh learned about the succession of an ecosystem as well as the significance of soil building practices for optimum garden health. She is dedicated to regenerative designing and has always been infatuated with nature and plants, with growing curiosity and wonderment. She is knowledgeable about the many roles of different plants and their importance within the larger ecosystems of our planet as well as the smaller eco-systems of our lives and bodies. She hopes to copy nature’s intelligence within her designing process.

This has inspired her to create an ebook ‘Urban Nature’, as well as traveling to volunteer on permaculture farms located in Spain and California. Being immersed in the landscaping industry since 2013 she is happy to contribute her skills and knowledge as a team member of Eco-Yards.

Logan Gibbs

Supervisor

Logan comes to Eco-yards with 6 years of landscape experience. The majority of his work has been hardscape projects (paver bricks, retaining walls) and a variety of whole yard builds with hardscape and softscape (plantings, dry rivers) features. Logan also has many years experience working on ice roads in Northern Canada and ski hills in Western Canada.

After spending a season learning permaculture (eco-friendly) landscaping in 2018, he went on to work 9 months at an industrial compost and humanure facility. The contrast between eco-friendly, sustainable landscaping and industrial composting clarified for him that the healthiest and most earth-friendly way to make a difference in the world was through building ecological landscapes that nurture the soil, plants, animals and people.

Logan also has a passion for holistic health and appreciates the systems thinking approach that ecological landscaping provides. 2020 is Logan’s first year with Eco-yards and he is excited to be part of the team.

 

 

 

 

Emily Brooks

Landscaper

Emily was born in Calgary, but grew up in small town Saskatchewan. She will be completing her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sustainability and Sociology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia in April 2020. Through her education, she has been able to focus on a variety of sustainability issues, and gain a passion for sustainable community building, social justice, and environmental conservation.

For two summers, Emily worked in the forests of Northern Saskatchewan as an environmental field tech collecting data for a Boreal Caribou habitat restoration project.

Emily has always loved nature, wild plants, and being outside, and grew up with a family who are passionate about gardening and the outdoors. She spent most of her summers digging in her grandmothers’ gardens and helping family members with small gardening and landscaping jobs (paver patios, retaining walls). Emily is excited to move back west and start gaining hands-on experience doing sustainable landscaping with Eco-yards.

 LANE SHORDEE

Lead Hand/ Landscaper

Lane Shordee has worked for Eco-yards on a on call basis for a few years. He came to Eco-yards from a 12 year background building various types of landscaping projects; from hard landscape features such as ponds, decks, pathways and rock placement, to soft landscaping with a focus on native plant species.
 Lane has a fine arts degree from the Alberta College of Art and Design and brings a creative eye, looking at new ways to build and maintain landscapes. Lane also builds large scale ecological based artworks that range from theatre sets to permanent public artworks..

EUGENE KALIONau

Landscaper

Eugene has more than eight years of freelance landscaping experience performing various landscaping duties. He was born and raised in Belarus where he gained most of his landscaping experience before moving to Canada. Eugene developed an early appreciation and understanding of the significance of bringing nature closer to humans and living in harmony with nature.

Eugene has always lived near nature and has participated in numerous outdoor activities. He is currently doing a Bachelor of Science majoring in Physics and Anthropology at the University of Calgary. He is interested in expanding his knowledge about eco-friendly landscaping and creating sustainable gardens and yards. Other interests and hobbies include photography, camping, hiking, river touring and a passion for science.

BEN PEARSON

Carpenter

Ben is a Calgary based Carpenter/ Woodworker with over 9 years of building experience in Alberta and BC. He completed his Carpenters Journeyman & Red Seal certifications through SAIT in 2018. With a background in wood frame construction, he has since expanded into other areas of custom project developments including restaurant renovations (Cafe Koi/ The Allium / Home & Away), custom furniture, cabinetry & landscape carpentry.

He has a passion for creating simple, functional, and unique designs in his work. But when he’s not busy working on wood-related activities he’s been known to curate local musical events like “Galactic Funk”: a special space of groove odyssey through 1970’s funk/disco based sounds.

 

 

 

 

Our Process is beautiful and sustainable too!

Every morning our crews circle up and set the intention to work harmoniously, lovingly, safely, efficiently, all while creating beauty. And they do! They work with joy and respect for each other and our clients. Our clients often say that, as much as they love what we have done, they love the energy our crews bring to their home just as much.

We work to avoid using techniques that are harmful to the environment. This is what makes us stand out from other landscaping companies in Calgary. Here are some of our techniques:

  • When we remove sod we take it for composting.
  • Cover-over lawns with newspaper rather than hauling sod to the landfill.
  • We usually use shovel, pick axe and wheelbarrow rather than bobcats.
  • Minimize driving.
  • Use materials that are local and organic.

Check Out Our Projects

Here are a few yards and projects designed and installed by our Eco-yards™ crews.

Don't Be Shy. Get In Touch!

If you are interested in working together,  contact us and we will get back to you as soon as we can!