A professional landscape designer will ensure that your garden is not only beautiful but also practical. They've learned through experience what works and what doesn’t. Whether your yard needs seasonal updates or a total renovation, our experienced designers can offer a wide range of ideas while offering the flexibility to create your own unique outdoor space that reflects your needs and your personality.
Our landscape design and installation team can help you with any project you may have - from curbside appeal to stormwater management to walkways- the possibilities are endless! There’s a reason our landscapes stand out, and we’ve been making them happen for 75 years. Meet the innovative, driven and creative individuals that are part of our landscape design team:
DANIEL VAN DYKE, LANDSCAPE MANAGER & DESIGNER
BACKGROUND: Born and raised in Newport News, Virginia, Daniel studied at both Christopher Newport University and Old Dominion University. He originally started at McDonald Garden Center at the age of 15, unloading Christmas tree trucks. Daniel has worked in all departments of the Garden Center, settling in with Landscape, after he graduated college, as the Installation Manager. Daniel's father, Tom Van Dyke, is the Vice President of Operations for McDonald Garden Center and has been working there for more than 40 years. So technically speaking, Daniel has been with the company for 16 years, but in reality it seems like he has been with the company his entire life!
GARDENING ADVICE: A Garden has to be specific to the home owner and the property. No one has the same exact taste so every garden has to be unique to an individual. This can reflect in someone’s willingness to work in the garden, the type of environment someone grew up in, or can be as simple as someone’s favorite color. Ultimately, the goal is to create a landscape that reflects a clients unique tastes and specific needs into a cohesive, creative vision.
KELYN HOLCOMB, LANDSCAPE DESIGNER
BACKGROUND: A native of Chesapeake, Kelyn studied horticulture at Virginia Tech. After graduation, she worked in the horticultural departments at both the Norfolk Botanical Garden and the Virginia Zoo. She also spent time gardening on the big island of Hawaii, maintaining organic gardens and identifying tropical plants. Kelyn gets her hands dirty, continues to learn every day and has never met a plant she doesn’t like.
GARDENING ADVICE: "Gardens are always evolving, so don’t be afraid to change things up once in a while or find a different way to highlight the beauty of an old favorite, no matter how big or small."
LUKE WHEELER, LANDSCAPE DESIGNER
BACKGROUND: A native of Hampton, Virginia, Luke began working for McDonald Garden Center in 1998. Luke brings 18 years of experience as the Landscape Foreman, where he acquired a working knowledge of both residential and commercial landscapes. Through his ‘hands-on” work experience, Luke learned the intricacies of design principles and developed a working knowledge of plants, landscape design, and hardscapes. Luke strives to make every project not just a good investment, but a space that will enhance your lifestyle and sense of wellbeing.
GARDENING ADVICE: Let a garden evolve. A garden does not have to be completed all at once just to squeeze things in. Think in terms of season and scale. Be excited about every aspect of your yard and incorporate things that excite you and make you happy.
JULIA GOFORTH, LANDSCAPE DESIGNER
BACKGROUND: Julia was born and raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia and received a Bachelor's degree in Architecture from Virginia Tech. While working toward her design degree, she took several horticultural classes and discovered her passion for plants. While in the Hampton Roads area she has spent time working with garden markets and at the Norfolk Botanical Gardens to further her knowledge. Working to bring her love of design and all things botanical together, she is excited to be creating amazing landscapes.
GARDENING ADVICE: Be patient and celebrate the growth, no matter how small. One of the most amazing things about landscapes is that they are living things, so try to find beauty in all stages of the process, not just the final result.