Inner NE Arts & Crafts

When these garden-loving homeowners built their home on the site of a tear-down in the Alameda neighborhood of NE Portland, they were faced with a challenge. The larger footprint of the new home left little space for the garden they’d envisioned! They knew it was critical to maximize the natural beauty of the available space, so after extensive research and interviews with several design-build firms, they enlisted Drake’s to do just that.

The new yard is small but mighty. A partially-covered patio provides shelter from the elements (a constant in the Pacific Northwest) while a gas firepit enhances their enjoyment of the outdoors year-round. Natural building materials, organic shapes, and the fairytale glow of strategic outdoor lighting ensured the space retained a “garden” feel. A dog-friendly synthetic lawn with pet treatment minimizes odor–and maintenance!


Steven Kurvers





A lifelong Oregon resident, Drake has been passionate about plants since childhood, beginning with propagating and growing flowers at his grandfather’s nursery. He opened Drake’s 7 Dees in 1974, while earning degrees in Business and Horticulture from Oregon State University. He later expanded into the design/build side of the industry, allowing him to combine his passion for plants with his love of family by maximizing the quality of family time spent outdoors.

Drake is co-founder of the Oregon Landscape Contractors Association and is a Landscape Industry Certified Manager (LICM)—a designation that less than two percent of landscapers have attained. Additionally, Drake serves on the Board of Directors for the Portland Japanese Gardens, widely regarded as one of the seven best Japanese gardens outside of Japan.

Drake is married to former Oregon Speaker of the House, Lynn Snodgrass. Together, he and Lynn received the Farm Bureau President’s award in 1999 for their service and dedication to agriculture in the state of Oregon. Drake and Lynn have two wonderful daughters, two talented son-in-laws, and seven grandchildren. In his spare time, Drake enjoys camping, water and snow skiing, reading, and of course, gardening.