RainSmart Dream and Design Support Services
Get expert one-on-one guidance
Achieve your environmental goals for your home landscape. Friends of the Rouge will help you plan improvements to your home landscape that could include: rain gardens, pollinator gardens (or other conservation landscapes), rain barrels, strategic tree placement, as well as other essential strategies.
About the Digital Coach:
Matthew Bertrand, MLA serves as Restoration Coordinator and Landscape Designer with Friends of the Rouge. He has a Master's Degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Michigan and has built over 70 rain gardens.
- Member Discount Members of Friends of the Rouge may enter their membership code to receive a discount off of all services. Press here to learn about membership, or contact our staff if you are a member but need your code.
- Scholarships available for those with financial need. Contact RainSmart@TheRouge.org to learn more.
Virtual RainSmart Coach
This one-hour consultation occurs online using webchat tools to share a screen. We will rely on satellite imagery, GIS data, and Streetview photography to make a digital plan right before your eyes.[/gdlr_column
On-site Coaching At Your Home
This one-hour consultation occurs in-person. Bring an expert eye to your home to help you reach your goals. Transportation fee required. Enter the one-way distance in miles to your home from 650 Church St, Plymouth. Press here to open a map to calculate distance. NOTE: transportation costs may add up quickly; unless you need a soil boring or other in-person practice, most goals can be achieved virtually if you’re able to take and share good photos of the space.
Add Basic Concept Landscape Plan
Add on a basic concept landscape plan that illustrates the results of your coaching experience. For more detailed design work, talk through your needs during the consultation. We’ll be happy to provide an estimate for more detailed design plans.
Add Full Site Concept Landscape Plan
Looking for a complete revisioning concept for your entire home landscape? Select this option to receive a visualization that provides a complete dream and design overhaul for your home landscape, including tree planting, rain gardens, conservation landscapes (for birds, butterflies, pollinators, etc), plus pathways and spaces for your and your family to enjoy it all together. Concept plans offer high-level orientations, with color-coded zones for proposed future uses.
In-Person Only Add-on Options
Add Basic Topography Survey
Using a laser level, FOTR staff will provide snapshot elevation data for your home. The standard cost covers about 30 minutes on-site taking elevation data, plus reporting time. For larger sites or particular needs, contact us for a quote.
Add Soil Boring
Unlock the secrets hiding just below the surface! Friends of the Rouge will work with you to conduct a soil boring to a maximum 8 ft. depth, and provide you recommendations that incorporate the subsurface findings.
These findings often help avoid serious problems, uncover opportunities to improve the drainage of your rain garden or determine whether there’s enough clearance to groundwater for your rain garden to function properly. Plus, it’s really cool!
Soil borings use a hand augur to dig a 3.5" diameter boring as deep as 8 ft to reveal the texture of your soils and the depth to groundwater. This information is invaluable to support rain garden planning. Often in southeast Michigan, we discover sand veins hidden under clay, old foundations covered by soil, or other surprises both good and bad that impact rain garden planning.
Soil borings are best conducted when the ground is not frozen. Our hand tools can puncture through at the most 1" of frozen topsoil. If site conditions or other factors outside our control prevent us from completing the soil boring, we may only be able to offer partial reimbursement.