ABBOTSFORD-BASED LANDSCAPE DESIGNER AARON TEER TAKES US ON AN OUTDOOR HOME TOUR, INCLUDING THE RESIDENCE OF KISS RADIO’S KID CARSON
Like many teenage boys, mowing the neighbour’s lawn might be an easy way to make pocket change during the summer months. And that’s exactly how Abbotsford-based Landscape Designer Aaron Teer started what would become Teer Co. at the young age of 14. “I started cutting lawns and doing yard work for a guy who was getting out of the business,” Aaron tells us, “he handed over the business to me, and my Mom and Dad would drive me around in a Safari van and drop me off for work.”
As time passed, Aaron continued his burgeoning small business, getting his license at 16 and expanding his offerings and skillset as customers started requesting design work. “I always had a sibling working with me,” Aaron explains, “there were nine of us, so I had a pool of employees – I’ve worked with five of my siblings.” Post high school graduation, Aaron moved stateside to study business at the University of Chicago, but would pick-up his landscape business on his summer break back home.
After graduation, Aaron moved back to Abbotsford and got married to his wife Ashley and had to decide on his next step. “People would say, now it’s time to get a real job,” Aaron recalls, “but I started having a vision.” Soon Aaron completed his first full installation from scratch and fast-forward to today, Teer Co. is working on 14 homes this year alone. Aaron keeps his team small, with just him and one full-time employee, Dakota Thiessen. By doing so, he’s able to call upon his trusted network of suppliers from growers to concrete specialists. Aaron shares, “you’re getting the best of the best, they specialize in what they do.” This also gives Aaron time to focus on the creative part of his trade. “I’ve always been an artist,” Aaron explains, “back when I was 14, I would take Monday morning watercolour classes with a bunch of older ladies.” This artistic talent is just one of Aaron’s strengths as a landscaper, as he began sketching renderings for his clients to help them visualize his creative concept.
We met up with Aaron at two of his client’s homes. First stop, the Point Grey home of radio personality Kid Carson, his wife Hanan and two kids, Paris and Axl. An architect was doing a major renovation on the home and Aaron was tasked with the landscaping. “There was lots of concrete,” Aaron explains, “eight dump trucks of material went out, we ripped everything out and took it down to its bare bones.” Looking at the architecture of the home and discussing the lifestyle of the family, Aaron got to work, creating a modern landscape that incorporated a lot of little areas for gardening. “Kid and Hanan have a very healthy lifestyle,” Aaron shares with us, “they wanted to incorporate suburban gardening and teach their kids to grow.” Cherry trees, apple trees and dwarf blueberry bushes are seen throughout the property.
Next we headed to a client’s home in Langley. The home went under a massive renovation, and Aaron was given free range to design the landscape. Twelve concrete trucks were brought in, as were eighty dump truck loads of sand and material to raise the grade of the home. Notable features include the breathtaking entrance, the skinny linear entryways, a wood burning fireplace and landscape lighting. Aaron will be heading back to the home come fall for the project’s second phase.
After a busy day, Aaron comes home to spend time with his growing family, his wife and four kids who range in age from 2-7 years old, Oliver, Frederic, Lyla and Remy, with one more on the way. “We’re homebodies,” Aaron adds, “we hang out in the garden and watch the boys skateboard, they’re really into it right now.”
Photo Credit: Larry Goldstein