Owners Philosophy

Gardening is therapeutic both mentally and physically. Quiet time in the garden helps me relax. I feel calm and I feel in control. But don’t take it from me. Studies show that time in nature is good for your health. And your garden is nature. Trust me on this.

Owner Mark Roberts, workin' away
Mark getting some mental and physical therapy.

The basis of landscaping starts with plants and terrain. How we manipulate the plants and terrain determine the landscape. Here in the Bay Area we have the finest weather and soil for growing a healthy garden. We have excellent clay soil and plenty of sunshine and warmth to grow just about anything. There is not a better climate for growing a wide array plants.

We can’t forget the soil. Our native soil in the Bay Area is typically a clay soil. Clay soil is heavy. Very heavy. But to make it great soil for planting you just need compost. I love soil. It is so full of life. Literally. A healthy clay soil holds moisture and nutrients. This is good.

We are environmentalists. Our gardens are designed to work with nature not against it. We battle garden pests with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach and use least toxic methods of control. Most plant problems start with cultural issues being resolved. Is the plant in the right location? Is there enough sun? Too much sun? Not enough water? Too much water. If a plant is stressed that is when insects and diseases thrive. Catching weak plants early can allow problems to be rectified before further damage arise.RnSEdibles

We use the word gardening and landscaping interchangeably. But there is a difference. Landscaping is the big picture. It includes plants and hardscape. Basically everything outside is part of the landscape. Gardening is an activity that takes place within the landscape. It is a subset of landscaping.  I consider myself both a landscaper and a gardener. And although I develop landscapes my biggest joy comes from gardening. Gardening is manipulating plants to conform to the landscape. I encourage my clients to become gardeners. There is much peace and joy in gardening.

At Roots ‘n Shoots Landscaping we have always pushed edibles. Whether it is planting a vegetable garden or planting fruit trees and vines. Growing your own food is good for your mind, your body and the earth. It is gardening with a purpose and with a result.


Catching weak plants early can allow problems to be rectified before further problems arise.