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Want More Than Just a Nice Landscaping?

Your garden can help you transform into a happier, healthier person.

Because GARDENS CAN HEAL!


Why Nature is Necessary For a Better Life

Humans have always desired a connection with nature. There are unique and healing qualities that civilizations have tapped into since the beginning of time (think the hanging gardens of Babylon). For this reason, being outdoors gardening, taking a walk through the park or hiking through the forest, humans have found solace in nature for centuries.

However, a shortage of green spaces and an emerging culture of technology-obsessed people has caused nature deprivation and a disconnect with the world around us. Although quality time outside is hard to come by, it’s important to make nature a part of daily life.

Are you getting enough nature in your life? According to a paper published recently in the journal Scientific Reports, the minimum amount is about 120 minutes per week.

White, M.P., Alcock, I., Grellier, J. et al. Spending at least 120 minutes a week in nature is associated with good health and wellbeing. Sci Rep 9, 7730 (2019) doi:10.1038/s41598-019-44097-3

An abundance of research has proven that escaping to a community park, hiking through the woods, or spending a weekend camping can make you feel better. The most compelling evidence proves nature can lower a person’s stress levels, decrease blood pressure and reduce the risk of asthma, allergies, diabetes and cardiovascular disease, while boosting mental health and increasing life expectancy. Doctors have even begun prescribing time in nature as a way of improving their patients’ health.

Sadly, not everyone is capable of this seemingly, simple activity of getting outside. Whether it’s due to a busy schedule, health issues, lack of mobility or diminished mental health, nature takes a back seat. Consequently, this keeps folks from enjoying the benefits that nature can provide.

It doesn’t have to be like this for you.

What if I told you the answer to connecting with nature is right outside your door?


The purpose of a Wellness Garden is to distract you from the unhealthy thoughts spinning in your head. When your senses are distracted by sights, sounds and smells (among other senses), your mind can be easily swayed to relax and live in the moment. Many times, these in the moment sessions can bring about solutions to your problems and better health.


At Wellness Garden Design, I create outdoor spaces that are specifically designed to meet your physical, psychological, social and spiritual needs.

I like to call what I do specificity landscaping. I design gardens specifically to each client’s needs and dreams, not just what fits into their yard.

After a decade of designing high-end landscaping for a company working in the NorthShore, I realized most of the designs I created were not helping the homeowner connect with nature; frequently it was to impress their friends, neighbors or to just create curb-appeal. Ultimately, even after many meetings, clients left it up to me to design to whatever the latest trend was, offering very little input into what they wanted or needed in a landscape design. In the end, it made me sad to visit these beautiful landscapes, only to see them unused and unappreciated. So sad in fact, that even though I loved designing landscapes, I felt this type of designing was unhealthy for me and left the company.

Consequently, I decided I had to break-away from the hum-drum landscaping industry and hone my design skills to help folks connect with nature, right in their very own yards! That need is what drove me to open Wellness Garden Design and focus on attracting clients that wanted more out of their landscape. More than just a great looking design with curb appeal; a place to spend time with family, play with the kids, throw the dog a ball or to just take a moment away from the world. Furthermore, I strongly feel that after folks spend some time in their own Wellness Garden, that they too would believe that gardens can heal.

I am here to serve your needs with my experience

Please allow me to introduce myself a little further. My name is Holly and I’ve been a gardener from birth. Even my name reflects my connection to nature! I grew up growing veggies with my Father and flowers with my Mother. My horticultural degree is in Natural Area’s Management, along with certificates in Landscape Design, Landscape Maintenance and Urban Forestry Management. I am a licensed arborist through the International Society of Arborists (License #A5210A) and taught Computer Landscape Design (DynaSCAPE) at the College of Lake County. And lastly, I have over 16 years of design and budgeting experience within the landscaping industry.

I love to volunteer for many organizations in my area, including the Illinois Extension Master Gardener and Naturalist programs. Otherwise, any free time I have is spent with my husband and dogs, camping, forest bathing or kayaking.

Your Wellness Garden Design process will be as pleasant as enjoying your new Garden.

Your Dreams

We will thoroughly discuss all of your landscaping needs, wants and desires for your Wellness Garden.

Your Budget

No stress here. Whatever your investment amount, there are many ways to cut-the-fat on projects and get bigger results.

Your Delight

Is truly the most important thing to me. I’m driven to design a Wellness Garden to help you be happier and healthier.


Monarch butterfly on purple liatris flower among other colorful wildflowers

“Plants and animals are our connection to all that is nature. They show us how to live in the moment; be in the moment. Showing us the way to live a life full of moments, not one of stagnation.”

Holly Farrell


Here’s things you’ll love about your new Wellness Garden:

  • There’s something blooming every season and it even looks good in winter.
  • All of your senses are stimulated; its not just nice-looking landscaping.
  • Your garden can have a special purpose; Whether it be your Zen haven, a food source or both!
  • The convenience of having your very own spot, designed specifically for you, to enjoy.
  • Your landscaping will be unique to you, not a cookie-cutter plan many landscape companies pass off to all their clients.
  • It doesn’t have to break the bank; with a plan, you can go along in stages or additionally, install yourself to really stretch those dollars!

Furthermore, a Wellness Garden will CRUSH these excuses:

  • My schedule won’t allow me to spend time in nature.
    • In this fast-paced world, it’s not easy to find the time swing over to the park or take a hike in the forest preserve. And when you do, many times there are too many undesirable distractions. Having your own personal Wellness Garden can solve both of those problems.
  • Nature can’t do anything for me!
    • There are many studies that prove otherwise, however you be the judge. Experiment by getting your 120 minute dose of nature this week and see if you don’t feel better. I think you will! Then contact me.
  • I’m blind, how do I enjoy landscaping when I can’t see it?
    • Just because you can’t see doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the landscape. You have many other senses to tantalize. Just imagine the sounds of a water feature, the smell of sweet flowers or the feel of a fuzzy leaf.
  • I can’t get outside, due to health or mobility issues.
    • Mobility limitations can be overcome by addressing your specific needs and designing the landscape accordingly. Including, (but to limited to) eliminating steps, making paths wider and foot-friendly. (Read this)
  • I’m housebound and can only look out the window.
    • There are many ways to bring nature to a housebound person with a window view. By ‘reverse-planting’ and adding elements that attract friendly wildlife, it almost feels like being outside.
  • My loved one has Dementia, and I can’t be worried about them eating a plant.
    • No matter what the perceived limitation is, there’s usually a solution. In this case, a safe, edible plant design would suit.
  • Nature can’t do anything for me!
    • There are many studies that prove otherwise, however you be the judge. Experiment by getting your 120 minute dose of nature this week and see if you don’t feel better. I think you will! Then contact me.


Public Wellness Gardens

Wellness Gardens can be found in a variety of settings, including hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living residences, continuing care retirement communities, out-patient cancer centers, hospice residences, and other related healthcare environments.

Accordingly, the focus of these types of Wellness Gardens is primarily on incorporating safe plants and friendly wildlife into the space. Settings can be designed to include active uses such as raised planters for horticultural therapy activities or programmed for passive uses such as quiet private sitting areas.

It can be tough finding funding and navigating the needs of your clients, however that’s where I come in. Not only am I a landscape designer, I can help write your grant to fund your Wellness Garden, too! So, if you had any doubts about my ability to adapt a Wellness Garden to any need, please read this blog post about designing an Inclusive Wellness Garden.

The goal of Wellness Garden Design is to create and install Wellness Gardens everywhere someone needs one. I will design anywhere in the United States.