Gerry Edlund started mowing hay and doing tractor work for family, neighbors and friends at the age of twelve. His childhood dream was to become a dairy farmer. By the time he graduated from high school in 1954 the Kent valley was beginning to transform to an industrial area. Gerry quickly realized that dairy farming would not be a good long-term profession. So he decided to put his equipment operation and Navy Sea-Bees mechanic skills together in a new venture – landscaping.
Edlund Landscaping Co. was formed in 1955 by Gerry and his father Gus. Their office was located in the family home on Carr Road and Gerry's mother Margaret took care of the secretarial and accounting work. Several of Gus's friends who had retired early from BOEING were early employees. After a few years of experience with landscaping Gerry decided he liked this line of work and went on to study Landscape Architecture at the University of Washington where he graduated with a degree in 1965.
After graduation Gerry expanded the business to include professional landscape architectural design services as well as landscape construction. He partnered with fellow landscape architect Lloyd Thorson in 1968 and the firm became Edlund/Thorson. Their office was moved to downtown Seattle. Gerry's wife Carole took over as Secretary/Treasurer for the business in 1970 and Margaret became a favorite babysitter for grandchildren Marilyn and August. Carole's father Oliver Mathewson joined the business as a carpenter in the construction division. Carole's sister Terri also helped out in the office while her husband Bill Briere worked with the construction crew.
The company continued to grow during this period and services were provided as near as Renton and as far away as Grand Coulee Dam, Royal City and Sunnyside when the firm was involved with landscape design and installation of planting and irrigation for many senior housing projects across the state.
In 1975, Lloyd left the firm and Gerry moved the office back to Renton. At that time the company became known as Gerald Edlund Associates.
In 1980, the firm incorporated and the name was changed to Edlund Associates Inc. While the focus of our work over the years has evolved primarily to design/build projects, the company continues to provide professional design services for residential, commercial, municipal and institutional projects. We also offer installation only for projects that have been designed by other professionals. Landscape maintenance was added to our scope of services in 1986.
In 1980 at the age of ten Gerry's daughter Marilyn started tagging along with him daily during the summer. Marilyn enjoyed learning new things and gradually took on more responsibility in the office. By the time, she entered high school she was often working on design projects after school and on the weekends.
Marilyn joined the firm as a full-time employee in 1988 following high school graduation and a summer of traveling in Europe. In addition to plenty of hands-on experience working in the office and in the field, Marilyn has extensive training in many aspects of the landscape industry including planting and landscape design, graphics, soils, drainage, irrigation design, water conservation, sustainable sites, pruning, integrated pest management, organic gardening practices , human resources, estimating, and accounting.
Gerry's son August also spent the summers during high school helping out with the business. He initially wanted to become a mechanic and attended technical college after high school. In 1994 August joined the firm as a full time construction crew member and mechanic. He worked with the company until his wife's career path took them to Vermont in 2002. August and his children Eric and Charlie enjoy helping out during their vacation visits to Renton.
Today the company employs a small staff of team players who enjoy their work and take pride in serving our clients. Gerry and Carole are still active in the business on a full time basis. The family enjoys working together and volunteering in the Renton community to make it a better place for all citizens.
Edlund Associates has enjoyed a legacy of improving the outdoor experiences of our clients for over 55 years and we look forward to continuing the tradition for many more years to come.