Crafting Paradise: A Complete Landscape Transformation in Dover, MA

landscape design, pool, plantings, fire pit, shed, retaining walls

Design | Patio | Grill Island | Outdoor Kitchen | Lighting |Fire pit | Irrigation| Drainage | Tree, shrub and perennial planting

Nestled in the charming town of Dover, Massachusetts, a homeowner envisioned a backyard oasis, a haven where relaxation and recreation would seamlessly intertwine. Our landscape construction team embraced the challenge of flattening the yard, installing a pool, and creating a holistic outdoor experience. This project involved a meticulous combination of retaining walls, tree trimming, grading, landscape lighting, patios, landings, plantings, and the addition of a captivating gas fire pit, showcasing the comprehensive expertise of our team.

Site Issues Resolved Through Landscape Architectural Design Process 

After consulting with the client and conducting a thorough assessment of the yard, several pressing issues have emerged that necessitate attention. Foremost among these concerns was insufficient sunlight for the backyard, a critical factor especially given the homeowners’ intent to construct a pool. Enhancing the natural light exposure in the space was paramount to ensuring an inviting and functional outdoor environment.

Furthermore, the site presents challenges related to its existing grades. The topography of the property poses complexities due to its location on a hill. The original construction of the home involved excavating into the hillside to accommodate the building, resulting in elevated terrain on both the left and right sides of the property, encroaching into the backyard. Conversely, the rear portion of the property is characterized by a steep incline, creating unevenness and potentially limiting usable space.

Addressing these issues required a comprehensive approach that considers both the aesthetic and functional aspects of the landscape design. Strategies may involve strategic grading and earthworks to mitigate the uneven terrain, as well as the incorporation of elements such as retaining walls or terracing to optimize space utilization and create a harmonious outdoor living environment. Additionally, the integration of appropriate vegetation and landscaping features can help to soften the visual impact of the grades while enhancing the overall appeal and ambiance of the yard.

By collaboratively developing a tailored design solution that addresses the challenges of sunlight exposure and uneven topography, we can create a backyard retreat that not only fulfills the client’s aspirations but also maximizes the potential of the space for enjoyment and relaxation.

Backyard Retaining Walls Crucial to a Successful Landscape Design

The initial phase of the construction process involved the installation of retaining walls to facilitate the subsequent steps, notably the pool installation. A substantial Allen block retaining wall was constructed along the rear boundary of the property. This wall not only extended the usable space of the property by five feet but also served as a visual demarcation between the wooded area and the well-maintained lawn.

The outdated and deteriorating railroad tie wall, which was plagued by weed overgrowth and creeping juniper, was replaced to enhance the aesthetics and functionality of the backyard. In its place, two elegant natural field stone walls were erected on either side of the backyard. Unlike the rear retaining wall, these walls were given special attention to ensure they added to the overall charm of the space. 

Moreover, strategic considerations were made during the construction process to optimize the layout. A thoughtful cutout was incorporated into one section of the field stone wall to accommodate the placement of a custom-built shed. This design decision was made to preserve the integrity of the pool decking and lawn area, ensuring every inch of the backyard was utilized effectively.

Overall, the construction of these retaining walls not only expanded the usable space but also significantly enhanced the aesthetic appeal and functionality of the backyard, setting the stage for further improvements.  

Tree Removal

Dover’s picturesque landscapes are adorned with mature trees that contribute to the town’s allure. Our commitment to preserving nature’s beauty led us to employ a strategic tree-trimming approach. Skilled arborists carefully pruned branches to enhance views and create an open, inviting atmosphere. This delicate balance ensured that the beauty of nature harmonized with the luxury of the pool, creating a landscape where both elements flourished.


Precision grading played a pivotal role in crafting a flawless canvas for the pool installation. Manipulating the yard’s topography, our team created a smooth and level space that seamlessly integrated with the surrounding landscape. Careful consideration of slopes and elevations not only addressed functional aspects but also contributed to the visual appeal. The result was a flawlessly graded yard that served as the perfect backdrop for the upcoming pool installation.

Landscape Lighting

As dusk descends upon Dover, the magic of the backyard continues with strategically placed landscape lighting. Our team designed a lighting design that highlighted key features, from the majestic retaining walls to the carefully pruned trees. Subtle illumination along pathways, patios, and plantings added a touch of enchantment, extending the usability of the outdoor space well into the night.

Patios and Landings

To enhance the outdoor experience, we crafted patios and landings that served as inviting social spaces. The choice of materials echoed the natural beauty of Dover, creating a seamless transition from the pool area to these functional and aesthetic elements. These spaces became hubs for social gatherings, offering both comfort and style to the homeowner and their guests.

Gas Fire Pit

Adding to the allure of the backyard, our team installed a captivating gas fire pit. Positioned strategically, to become a family focal point, drawing friends together in the warmth of its gentle flames. The fire pit not only added a touch of sophistication but also extended the usability of the outdoor space into the cooler evenings, creating a cozy atmosphere for intimate gatherings.


Plantings emerged as integral elements in the successful realization of the project’s vision. The thoughtful placement of evergreens and hydrangeas along the back retaining wall serves a dual purpose: not only do they create a picturesque barrier, but they also effectively discourage individuals from venturing too near the edge. Moreover, their lush foliage enhances the aesthetic appeal of the space while contributing to its ecological balance.

Ascending above the flanking retaining walls on either side of the backyard, the hill is adorned with a rich assortment of plantings, carefully curated to marry both form and function. This diverse planting not only delights the eye with its vibrant colors and textures but also serves the crucial role of stabilizing the soil, ensuring structural integrity and preventing erosion. In harmonizing beauty with practicality, these plantings not only enhance the visual allure of the landscape but also underscore its sustainability and resilience.


Ensuring both safety and compliance with the town’s regulations, we prioritized the installation of a fence around the entire perimeter of the property. Recognizing the importance of aesthetics, particularly in areas visible to passersby and guests, the homeowners opted for black aluminum fencing. This choice not only provides a sleek and modern appearance but also offers durability and low maintenance, aligning well with the overall design aesthetic.

In areas where the fence is less visible or concealed from public view, such as sections bordering neighboring properties or obscured by landscaping, we implemented a cost-effective solution by utilizing black chain-link fencing. While offering a more economical alternative, the black chain-link still provides the necessary security and boundary demarcation without compromising on quality or functionality.

By employing a combination of black aluminum and black chain-link fencing, we achieved a balanced approach that meets both budgetary considerations and aesthetic objectives while ensuring the safety and security of the property. This thoughtful selection of materials demonstrates our commitment to delivering practical and visually appealing solutions tailored to the specific needs and preferences of our clients.

In Dover, MA, our comprehensive landscape transformation journey turned a challenging terrain into a breathtaking backyard retreat. Through the strategic use of retaining walls, tree trimming, grading, landscape lighting, patios, landings, plantings, and the addition of a captivating gas fire pit, we transformed the homeowner’s vision into a tangible paradise. The interplay of natural elements, expert craftsmanship, and innovative features created a space where tranquility, luxury, and socializing coexist seamlessly, showcasing the transformative power of a holistic landscape approach.

We work in Needham, Newton, Wellesley, Westwood, Dover, Milton, and other communities surrounding Boston.  Fill out a form on our contact page today to book your no-cost consultation.