Academic Landscaping helped the owner of a classic Myers Park brick home being refurbished find the perfect outdoor living extension: patios and walkways with Pathway Autumn pavers.

All photos: Kinson Desmangles

Why “Academic”? It started as a labor of love by Academic founder Kinson Desmangles to help a neighborhood high school student start a 529 college fund.

A neighbor had thrown out a lawn mower and weed eater on the curb,” said Desmangles. “We fixed them and started a lawn care business with the teen.”

Academic has grown immensely since then, to a full-time enterprise, but it’s still got an “academic” basis, as Desmangles is also a student working toward an engineering degree. All that studying doesn’t keep him from doing some beautiful work.

Academic has landed contracts with Charlotte and has completed a lot of projects on the city’s north end.

The Myers Park job was subcontracted with the home builder who was refurbishing the property. Academic provided the design for the builder and the homeowner that included paver walkways out front to a raised paver patio/porch, a Pine Hall Brick retaining wall, and a pathway to the back yard where 350-square-foot paver patio is complemented by a Techo-Bloc retaining wall.

“Recently, clay pavers have become more popular here,” said Desmangles, who consulted with the owner on paver selection from Pine Hall Brick sample boards. “The owner really liked the color and texture of Pathway Autumn. You can’t get that texture with other non-clay pavers. And we love the idea of using locally made – North Carolina – product.”

The clean lines of Pathway pavers worked well with the style of brick used in the original construction and the color was good match.

Academic Landscaping business includes commercial and residential lawn care and maintenance, as well as the heavy lifting of grading for its hardscape designs. The Myers Park project involved some significant elevation changes in the back and the front porch required about three feet of crusher stone within a brick encloser.

Along with the greenspace, also by Academic, the paver project blends well with the well with the established shady lot. Clay pavers are a good aesthetic choice for older treelined neighborhoods.

Desmangles, the engineering student, enjoys the technical and aesthetic sides of the work, as much as he enjoys paying for college. He couldn’t have picked a better name for the company than Academic.