Bolstered by Boulders

Terrapin Landscapes created a magical outdoor escape at a Kennebunk based home with naturally occurring boulders and stone
Words By Anna Mangum
Photos By Francois Gagne
Landscape Design & StoneworkTerrapin Landscapes|ArchitectMobile Studio Design|BuilderBowley Builders|Coastal Source Landscape LightingSmarthome Solutions|Irrigation SystemProscape Irrigation|Lighting DesignBG Electric

In Kennebunk, a home with a manicured lawn is ringed by an incredible depth of stonework andnative plants. The yard contains naturally occurring features, around which the landscape settles,making it nearly impossible to decipherwhat wasn’t originally there. The most notable naturalfeature is a show-stopping boulder and the bedrock ledge outcropping it is married to. Anexample of how nature inspires, Mike Corsie and his team at Terrapin made it the destination fora fire pit and seating area serving as an extension of the interior space and a three-season porch

Mike Corsie and his team created a design that blends into the native landscape while maintaining a manicured curb.

The stonework done by Terrapin’s dry-stone masons anchors the softscape and adds structure tothe yard. Mike says, “The most significant detail about the stonework is that the retaining wallswere built entirely without mortar. Our stone masons, Jeff Fairfield and Ben Maxfield, havespent years honing this ancient craft by working under more experienced masons, attendingtraining workshops, and building drystone features.” The walls are at a steep grade above thedriveway with a cap that was designed with subtle irregularities to imitate the rocky ledge andallow for lighting to be installed under the overhang. The type of stone, locally sourced BlackMountain granite, also appears in the formal walkway to the front door and a slab staircase.

A back patio serves as an extension of the interior space and three-season porch.
Purple flowers pop against the green plants and Terrapin's skillful stonework
A harmonious balance between green, soft materials and gray, unmoving materials was reached.
A large boulder and rock ledge became the site of a quiet seating nook

The plants surrounding the house are a mix of the homeowner’s personal taste and a carefullychosen selection to pair with the architecture. A calming palette of grays from the stonework andgreens from the softscape are prominent, while allowing for delightful pops of color. Not only isit pleasing to look at, the final design is easy for Terrapin to maintain as well as wildlife friendly.They used native sods, such as hay-scented fern and lowbush blueberry to help re-naturalize andcontrol erosion. Bees and other pollinators are happy with the echinacea and bee balm at thisbackyard trove.

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A collaboration between Terrapin Landscapes and Matthew Cunningham Landscapes brings the best of both worlds: sustainability and beauty