Tell us about yourself and your business.
My name is Brooke Furrh and Donna is my wife. We own Custom Gardens landscape company. I have a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture degree and I am a licensed Landscape Architect and Irrigator. My wife has a Bachelor degree in Interior Design. We met at Texas Tech University, then moved to Dallas and got married. After seven years, we decided to start a family. I did not like living in Dallas and I did not want to raise a family there. I grew up in Pampa and my wife grew up in Houston, but she was gracious enough to move to Amarillo while she was pregnant with our second child.
What made you become an entrepreneur?
I wanted to bring the art of Landscape Architecture and what I learned in Dallas to Amarillo. I saw expensive houses being installed with only two trees and some grass. There was little creativity and very little competition with an understanding of what a professional landscape company could do to extend the living space into the outdoors.
Was there a specific aha moment that catapulted your career into entrepreneurship?
When I was living in Dallas, I worked for a couple of landscape companies. Some had money problems and some had quality issues that did not align with my personal values. I wanted to start a company where I could provide the best quality to people that I can serve for the rest of my life. I wanted to serve a community where I can see the fruits of quality workmanship decades later and know that we made the world around us a better place.
What do you find special about the entrepreneur community in Amarillo?
The entrepreneur community in Amarillo is very supportive. People get excited when a new company starts up and they want to give them an opportunity to perform. Most people are anxious to tell others about a well performing new business. People in Amarillo do business with people, not brand names and corporations. In any conversation when discussing a business, people want to know who works there that they might know and where they are from.
What’s a celebration you want to share with the community about your business that has happened in 2020?
In 2020 we began building swimming pools. We designed swimming pools and subcontracted to work to local pool builders for a number of years. I worked for a pool company in Dallas for a short while. Since we have a great design team led by Jeff Jenkins and a construction team led by Joe Alarcon, we can take the original dream of creating outdoor spaces much further than I ever imagined when we started this company 20 years ago.
When did you realize you were an entrepreneur?
I realized I was an entrepreneur when I was having lunch with another entrepreneur and he told me we were entrepreneurs. He was kind enough to spend time with me and council me about family, spiritual growth, and business. They do not teach business skills in college when your major is Landscape Architecture. The WT Enterprise Center has been a resource to help me develop strategies to overcome problems and advance the company in ways that would otherwise never happen. It is impossible to measure the advancements we have made since participating in the Founder’s Club.
To learn more about Custom Gardens, click here!