Frequently Asked Questions – Landscaping & Restoration


Q. What services do you offer?

A. ALDER Environmental offers full-service landscape design, installation, maintenance and professional consulting.  We specialize in low-maintenance, sustainable landscape designs, installations project of the highest standard, and maintenance packages that are sustainable over time. Our professional consultation services develop the best possible plan for your property.


Q. What makes ALDER Environmental different from other landscaping companies?

A. Our landscaping techniques are not traditional. We never apply pesticides, herbicides or chemical fertilizers. We don’t do lawn maintenance and will never recommend installing a turf lawn. There are alternatives to turf lawn that are much lower maintenance and better for our environment. We call this approach ‘Restorative Landscaping’.


Q. What is Restorative Landscaping?

A. Restorative landscaping is centered around working with nature to create low-maintenance, sustainable landscapes.


Q. How does using Restorative Landscaping help the environment?

A. Restorative landscapes are planted densely to reduce bare soil/maintenance. It embraces West Coast native plants, which thrive here naturally. Restorative Landscaping includes a range of species to combat biodiversity loss, considers pollinators and ensures habitat is available. It’s low-maintenance and drought tolerant.


Q. What are the benefits of using native plants in landscaping?

A. The benefits of using native plants on your property include lower maintenance, hardier and more adaptable than most exotic species. This reduced dependency on pesticides, water and irrigation systems. Native plants are resistant to frost damage, drought, common diseases, and herbivores. They form self-sustaining plant communities and produce long root systems to hold soil in place and resist erosion.


Q. Can landscaping be done in winter?

A. On the West Coast, the best time to install new landscaping is in the fall and winter, as long as the ground is not frozen. By planting in the winter, new roots get a chance to establish before the summer droughts. This gives plants the best opportunity to survive. 


Q. How do I restore my landscape?

A. ALDER Environmental can help transition your landscaping to be restorative by including more native plants, planting densley, using natural leaf mulch to improve soil and suppress weeds and removing invasive plants.


Q. Is landscaping good for the environment?

A. Unfortunately, traditional landscaping often has a negative impact on the environment. However, we created ALDER to do landscaping differently. We see each project as an opportunity to create habitat, support pollinators and restore biodiversity. 


Q. What are the advantages of landscaping?

A. At ALDER we believe that well-done landscaping brings your home and property alive. Landscaping brings curb appeal to your property and increases property value. When done well, landscaping can also allow you to enjoy your yard and home more by including features that fit in with your lifestyle, such as food gardens, sitting areas, outdoor patios, ponds and swimming pools. 


Q. What is the difference between conservation and restoration?

A. Conservation aims to protect our natural areas from being damaged and lost. Restoration aims to bring nature back to areas that have already been significantly changed.


Q. What are the best ways to control invasive species?

A. The best way to control invasive species is to detect them early and remove them from your yard. If you already have established invasives, you will need to remove the plants completely (especially the roots) and do regular scanning for the first two-three years after removal to make sure they don’t resprout from seeds or forgotten roots.


Q. How do invasive species affect the environment?

A. Invasive species act as ‘bullies’ on our properties. They spread quickly and stop other plants from being able to grow. If left unchecked, they are very difficult and expensive to contain. Over time they eliminate biodiversity and make our yards difficult to enjoy.


Q. What plants are invasive?

A. Some of Vancouver Island’s most invasive plants are:

  • Himalayan Blackberry
  • English Ivy
  • Scotch Broom
  • Periwinkle
  • Bindweed
  • Knotweed
  • And many others

If you want to confirm you have invasive plants on your property, call us at 250-686-5090