Journaling by Design


Hello & welcome to the brand-new Gardening by Design blog! This will serve as our personal journal in our adventures and experiences and we’d love for you to tag along in our learning process. We’ll be covering topics such as health and wellness, natural living and nutrition, the great outdoors, recipes, and of course – flowers and plants! We’ll be discussing design, gardening, local small business, and heaps of DIY’s on a weekly basis!

We thought we would just take a quick minute to introduce you to the team at Gardening by Design, the ladies that make this all happen!


Erin Charlebois // Landscape designer

At the heart of Erin’s design practice is her belief that all spaces should offer both an uplifting feeling and a particular energy. Complex spaces motivate and intrigue her because of her love for strategizing solutions—she is aware of the power of nature and design.

Her appetite for plant-life and botany stem from the many hours she spent in the garden with her mother and grandmother. Her experience with Artistic Landscape Designs Ltd., and background in art education, and communications has provided her with a particularly unique approach to the industry. Her goal is to introduce fresh and futuristic ideas to gardens and to achieve the best results through strong client relationships. She is dedicated to transforming natural spaces into works of art.


Mary-Anne Schmitz // Founder & Landscape Designer

Founder of Gardening By Design, Mary-Anne’s aesthetic and design process is a product of her remarkable childhood.

Growing up in the countryside, as one of 12 siblings, she’d always gravitated towards the outdoors. It was a chance to slip away from her house, which was often crowded and busy. She loved the natural beauty of rivers, rocks, and wild grasses—as well as the smell of dirt. This was also the time she felt most inventive allowing her imagination to run free. Her appreciation and understanding of plants began during time spent in northern Quebec planting tree seedlings, and was further satisfied while working with Artistic Landscape Designs Ltd. Gardening and design is an organic and nostalgic practice her for—a chance to reconnect with her roots—and to give space and purpose to plant life.

Engelina Schmitz // Landscape Designer

A trained artist and visionary, Engelina found her niche and purpose in Gardening By Design. She spent her life navigating the worlds of entrepreneurship and artistry coming from a lineage of business owners on her father’s side and artists on her mother’s side—experience now invaluable to her.

A family that spent most of their time in the garden, she further indulged these interests while working with Artistic Landscape Designs Ltd., in their perennial greenhouses. This marked the point at which she became a specialist in horticulture. She obtained a degree from Ryerson University in Interior Design and chose to apply her knowledge to exteriors and outdoor spaces. Her enthusiasm lies in designing areas that are always changing, growing, and adapting—never static.


Gardening by Design // Artistic Landscape

WHO WE ARE: Motivated by all design types, and love of horticulture, Gardening By Design (GBD) strives to create innovative yet ageless designs. Our belief is that a garden is not just a garden, it is a physical reflection of individuality, lifestyle and constant transformation.

WHAT WE DO: For over 25 years, GBD has been recognized for their extensive residential and commercial landscape designs. GBD’s portfolio extends across Ottawa and surroundings areas, including the Greater Toronto Area.

GBD has had the privilege of designing exciting properties such as the Royal Mint, the Ottawa Courthouse, Mark Motors, Artistic Landscape Design’s new show garden and have worked with companies such as Minto, CLV Group, and Oakwood.

Our charitable work with the Children’s Wish Foundation and many years creating landscape designs for the CHEO Dream Home foundation has been a great accomplishment.

Thanks for reading

GBD Team