Landscaper Showcase finalist makes the most of a small space

Updated Aug 30, 2016
This project managed to fit a pergola, a water feature, and a fire feature in small space.This project managed to fit a pergola, a water feature, and a fire feature in small space.

One of the six finalists in Total Landscape Care’s photo contest, the Landscaper Showcase, not only overcame working in tight quarters but was also able to transform the site into a location that would accommodate an intimate wedding.

Silvis Group Inc. in Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania, first met the project’s clients at a home and garden show. The two men were huge Steelers fans and had recently moved to Pittsburg to be able to attend more games.

They had bought Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger’s aunt’s house. Initially, they simply wanted to tidy up the backyard, but after meeting again to discuss the small space, they began to see the potential for something more.

Before Silvis Group came, the couple did not spend any time out in the yard.Before Silvis Group came, the couple did not spend any time out in the yard.

Since gay marriage had become legal in the state, they decided they wanted to use the space for their wedding, to which they planned to invite some of their closest friends.

Despite the complexity of the project, Silvis Group managed to complete the work in about a month with a crew of three.

The finished design included a water feature, a pergola, a fire feature, hardscaping and a small grassy area for the couple’s three Chihuahuas.

“They were very excited,” said Jay Bell, business development manager for Silvis Group. “They actually never went outside before. It was such a small space in the middle of the city.”

The couple had moved from San Francisco and was accustomed to always having a place to hang out outside.

“Living in Pittsburg, it is cold for many months throughout the year, so we added some heating elements so they could enjoy an extended season,” Bell said.

Because the yard received a lot of sun, the pergola was incorporated to add some vertical dimension and provide shade. One of the greatest challenges of the project was the limited access, which was only through a set of steps, requiring the team to do all the work by hand.

“Truthfully, I love working in small spaces,” Bell said. “A lot of people think there is nothing they can do with a small yard. This is a good example of a small space with a lot of different elements.”

Silvis Group was established in 1991 and specializes in landscape design/build, hardscaping, lawn maintenance and commercial snow maintenance in the Greensburg and Westmoreland County areas.

“We’ve done a lot of things in this nature, but never done anything exactly alike,” Bell said.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the fourth in a series of stories on the six finalists in TLC’s Landscaper Showcase contest. In the coming days, once we’ve reviewed all the finalists, we’ll be asking for you to vote for your favorite. 




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