I started a lawn maintenance company in ninth grade, kept it through college and for two years after college. My degrees are from Washington University in St. Louis, MO, in Business Administration and French. I studied my junior year in Paris, and interned for Cargill for 5 months while I was there.
After college I kept my lawn company so I could spend the following winter in Chamonix, France. Chamonix is one of the best places in the Alps to climb and ski. I met some Canadian skiers there and spent the following winter in Whistler, BC.
By 1998, we had started to do light landscape work along with the lawn company. I decided to sell the lawn company, and intended to get a “real” job like most of my college friends.
As it turned out, after nine years of working for myself, the idea of working for anyone else didn’t have the appeal it did when I was younger. So, I became Axel Landscape instead, to do landscape design and construction. Our first projects were for friends and acquaintances with new construction homes.
Our award-winning design team includes my wife Jodi Axel who handles about 70% of our design and sales. (My sister Amy had twins in July 2008 and has gone into semi-retirement.) We worked with designer Joanie Somerville on an MNLA award-winning project in 2002, and are pleased to have her back part-time now that her kids are a little older. I occasionally help design and sell also, but my primary focus is on the logistics and construction of your project.
The business has grown every year, and we keep finding new ways to work efficiently while working to the highest level of quality. We spend a lot of time planning each project before we arrive to install it. This is good for you, because it means we can complete your project efficiently and get back out of your way so you can enjoy your landscape as soon as possible.
We will have more than one crew eventually, but not until we have all the systems in place to be certain that the second crew will be just as productive and successful as the original.
We do this work because we enjoy it. We think there’s no reason that even big stressful projects can’t still be fun for all involved. We are absolutely committed to the success of this business, and I think you will feel the difference when you meet us.
Enjoy our website. I do my best to update it with new pictures every week during the season, so you can follow along if you like and see what we’re working on.