Landscape firms Impact Landscaping and Suncrest Gardens, Inc., were recognized for their contributions to making Akron a greener place to live, work and play. Each firm was awarded a $1,500 grand prize in Project EverGreen’s Akron “EverGreen Zone” Contractor Award competition sponsored by Mulch Mule. Impact Landscaping won the best private green space category and Suncrest Gardens the best public green space category.

Impact Landscaping worked for more than four months to make the Toth residence appear as if it’s an outdoor resort. The focal point of the yard is the waterfall, and the owners enjoy entertaining guests using the pool, fireplace and outdoor kitchen. The colorful flowers and trees soften the hardscaping and make time spent outdoors a sensory experience.

Suncrest Gardens designed and built the Serenity Garden, a park-like outdoor garden located at the new tower of the Summa Foundation’s Critical Care Building. The every day visitors of the Serenity Garden are family and friends of patients in critical care, and many are seeking solace, comfort and privacy. For that reason, the design incorporates six private seating nooks and lush, vibrant landscaping.

The Serenity Garden is a beautiful, comfortable, well-used space that affords visitors a peaceful outdoor alternative to hospital waiting rooms and lounges. The beauty and functionality of the Serenity Garden are appreciated not only by visitors, but by hospital staff and patients who view the garden from above via the elevated walkway.

The specific goal of the “EverGreen Zone” Contractor Award is to raise the level of awareness in Akron that achieving ecological sustainability begins with sound, responsible maintenance of public and private green spaces. “The winning entrants represent an optimal combination of turf, trees and garden elements,” said Den Gardner, executive director of Project EverGreen. “Not only are these green spaces playing a critical role in regulating local air quality and climate, they add beauty and economic value to all of Akron.”

For more information about Project EverGreen and to view photos of the winning entries, visit