Installing a landscape without a design is like baking a cake without a recipe. A design plan gives you or the installer a road map to installation to follow so that everything is well thought out and implemented correctly. A landscape plan paired with 3D images to show you what it will look like in real life gives you the peace of mind of knowing what to expect with the details ironed out before your construction starts.
Below are a few things that are often overlooked without pre-planning during the design process, but the list is endless!
What is your style? Do you prefer rounded, organic bed lines or straight, linear and modern? There is a way to design a mixture of both! Keeping your personal style in mind, your landscape begins to take shape during the design process once we discover what pleases your design eye.
Besides looking pretty, what makes spatial sense? Where are people coming from and going to? How are they going to get there in the most logical way? The design process ensures that each element on your wish list is placed so that everything flows together seamlessly, creating different outdoor rooms that compliment each other and how to move from one space to the other.
Grading and Drainage:
Is the slope of your yard draining back towards the foundation? Do you need a French drain or swale to direct the water off of the property and away from structures? Water mitigation is one of the most important things to consider in the planning of your landscape. Improper drainage can lead to flooded basements, settling and cracking foundations and can also lead to legal issues if your neighbors are affected.
Making sure that native, drought tolerant species are chosen, planning out sun/shade and water requirements, use of contrasting colors and textures and layering of different heights, plants that bloom at different times throughout the season and incorporating year-round interest are important! Plants can be strategically placed to provide screening from neighbors or things you don't want to see, and ornamental spring blooming trees around patios or near windows that you can see from the inside are also things to think about in your planting design.
If you are wanting to reduce your lawn and water consumption, you need to fill the space back in - and this is often done incorrectly. Xeriscape should be done in a creative way with a different mixture of materials so that you don't end up with a vast sea of rock or mulch. The use of boulders, cobble, rock, mulch and xeric plantings are important to use in a creative and artistic way to ensure that it is visually appealing, without looking overgrown and messy.
How much room do you need? Will this space be used as a lounge area, dining area, small seating space or large entertaining area? How much space do you need for people to be seated comfortably? What material are you drawn to? Planning out these areas are crucial as this will be your hardscape area that cannot be changed once installed.
Do you want a fire pit or fireplace? Where is your gas meter? It is important to plan out where this feature best fits in, whether it is in close proximity to the house, or perhaps incorporated into a destination patio. It is important to choose building materials that compliment the house, and think about size and scale of the feature itself in relation to its surrounding components.
Do you want a pergola, umbrella, shade sail or retractable awning? Which makes the most sense for your space and aesthetic? Looking at the direction and path of the sun and how much exposure you have are all things to plan out.
These are all things that we think of during the design process (and much more) that can be detrimental and costly if overlooked. Whether you know what you want and need help planning it out, or have no idea what you want and need maximum guidance, we can help! Landscaping can seem overwhelming, but we will work with you every step of the way to ensure that your dream becomes a reality.