Landscape design combines the integrated master landscape planning of a property and the specific garden design of landscape elements and plants within it. The practical, aesthetic, horticultural, and environmental sustainability are also components of landscape design. Often, design is divided into two: hardscape and softscape. Landscape designers often collaborate with professionals from related disciplines such as architecture and geography, soils and civil engineering, surveying, landscape contracting, botany and artisan specialties.
Design projects can be handled by separate masters in: landscape design or landscape architecture. Landscape design typically involves artistic composition and artisanship, horticultural finesse and expertise. The emphasis lies on detailed site involvement from conceptual stages through to final construction. Landscape architecture, on the other hand, focuses more on urban planning, city and regional parks, as well as civic and corporate landscapes. It also covers large scale interdisciplinary projects and delegation to contractors after completing designs.
There can be a significant overlap of talent and skill between the two roles, depending on the education, licensing, and experience of the professional. Either way, both landscape designers and landscape architects practice landscape design.
There are innumerable other design factors and considerations brought to the complex process of designing a garden that is beautiful, well-functioning, and that thrives over time. Design factors include objective qualities and measurable considerations such as:
- climate and microclimates
- topography and orientation
- site drainage and groundwater recharge
- municipal and resource building codes
- soils and irrigation
- human and vehicular access and circulation
- recreational amenities i.e.sports and water
- furnishings and lighting
- native plant habitat botany when present
- property safety and security
- construction detailing
As for subjective qualities, the list includes:
- special site qualities to emphasize
- client’s needs and preferences
- desirable plants and elements to retain on site, modify, or replace, and that may be available for borrowing of scenery from beyond
- artistic composition from perspectives of both looking upon and observing from within
- spatial development and definition—using lines, sense of scale, and balance and symmetry; plant palettes; and artistic focal points for enjoyment
The up-and-coming practice of online landscape design allows professionals to remotely design and plan sites through manipulation of two-dimensional images without ever physically visiting the location. Due to the frequent lack of non-visual, supplementary data such as soil assessments and pH tests, online landscaping should only incorporate plants that withstand many diverse soil conditions.
To understand what kind of environment you want to create, we always start with an initial on-site consultation. Our landscape consultant advises whether you require a full landscape design or a design concept, which we provide for a fee. During this meeting, we begin forming a better picture of what features might work within your space, while paying attention to functional elements like planting arrangements, shade, lighting and irrigation. We also gain a clear understanding of your budget and timeline.
After the initial consultation, we will arrange another consultation—this time with you and our in-house designer. Discuss your vision. Our designer then comes up with a design proposal for your approval. Following the acceptance of the plan, the design brief will be sent to you for review so that we’re all in agreement on what was discussed at the consultation. The subsequent concept plan is entirely based on the content of the design brief.
Once the landscape design is approved, we provide you with a fee proposal. It presents the detailed quote including the layout, all plants and materials used, labour and estimate time frame.
Construction of your dream home begins with your acceptance of the quote! If your design requires council approval, you can opt to manage it yourself or better yet, leave it to us to process the Council Development Application for you.