Consumer Reports calls YardApes’ founder Shayne Newman’s landscape renovation, “backyard bliss.”  The “before” and “after” transformation of Newman’s property was featured in Consumer Reports’:

Reduce the size of your lawn—and your yard work

5 easy ways to enjoy your yard more and maintain it less

The new Consumer Reports survey found almost a third of homeowners who made changes to their lawn in the last year reduced its size in some way. This is how Newman re-imagined his residential landscape.



outdoor kitchen before.jpg


Before: A receding lawn and a creaky, freestanding grill hardly made for relaxing backyard barbecues at this home in New Milford, Conn. The sloping landscape of the property created challenges, especially in terms of growing and mowing grass.

After: Rather than fight the sloping property, Shayne Newman, an industry-certified landscape professional and president of YardApes, used it to create a picturesque waterfall that flows into a koi pond. A stone-veneer retaining wall provides two sides of the pond and is the base for a built-in grill. A masonry fire pit anchors an all-season seating area, which looks out over a patch of lawn and resilient mix of border plants, including spirea shrubs, endless summer hydrangea, and ornamental grasses.


photo credit Denise Cregier Photographer


We believe everyone everywhere benefits from a connection with nature.