Landscape Design

by April Reinhardt
(last updated October 17, 2016)

A well-designed landscape can not only enhance the beauty of your home and land, it can add value to your property. You've probably traveled through neighborhoods where some of the homes have beautiful landscape designs. Yet in those same neighborhoods, other properties may look trashy or cluttered because the homeowner has simply littered their landscape with yard ornaments, misplaced shrubs, or ornamental grasses.

If you want to avoid the pitfall of having your landscape looking cluttered and ill organized, it's best to plan your landscape design before you turn that first shovelful of dirt in your yard. Your landscape design can be as simple or intricate as you desire, and you can plan your design using paper and pencil, or with elaborate computer software. Whichever method you choose, here are some tips for landscape design:

  • Know your boundaries. It's a good idea to obtain a plan of your existing property, showing where your property lines lie, before you start any type of landscaping project.
  • Get inspiration. Gather ideas from gardening magazines, online gardening sites, local nurseries, and mail order catalogs. Make a list of lawn ornaments, statues, plants, fountains, and other elements that you'd like to incorporate into your landscape design.
  • Rough draft. Sketch a draft plan onto graph or plain paper, and then tape tracing paper over your sketch. Walk your property and sketch the features of your land including ponds, streams, major trees and hedges, sunny and shady areas, and cool, wet, hot, and dry areas.
  • Detailed plan. Make a to-scale drawing of your property, including to-scale cutouts of the property features you noted in your walk-through. Place those features onto your drawing, and then make cut-outs of the features you'd like to have, and place them onto your landscape. Arrange and rearrange the features until you decide upon a permanent design.
  • Get advice. Consult with a professional landscape designer and have him go over your design. Listen to his recommendations and advice to further hone your design. Make sure that you stay within your budget when planning your design.

Once you're finished designing your landscape and are ready to begin the project, obtain all of the necessary permits and locate the underground utilities before you begin digging. If you're project is large, you may need to arrange to have a dumpster situated on your property to haul away trash and debris after demolition. Prepare your site by protecting the plants that you plan to keep. Ask the professional landscape designer to visit your site every so often and continue to ask for his advice at each juncture of your project through its completion.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...

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