Top 10 Landscape Design Tips

by Allen Quay

in Tips & Tricks

It can be overwhelming with all the landscape design tips found all over the web and it isn’t always an easy task to create a beautiful outdoor space that makes the most of your property.

The 10 essential landscape design ideas below will help you create an outdoor area that is an attractive, functional extension of your home.


1. Understand the basics. From linear patterns to subtle color transitions, an effective landscape design is full of little details that bring the big picture into focus. Read over our guide to landscape design basics before you start planning.

2. Know your space. Your yard may be small, or your home may sit on several acres; there may be slopes and hillsides to consider or other areas that make landscaping more of a challenge. Seek out landscape design ideas for your trouble areas first.

3. Use your available resources. Local gardening clubs and nearby colleges may offer classes or seminars that can help you avoid costly design mistakes.City funded organizations and horticulture extensions may offer free advice – just ask! 

4. Take advantage of location. Make a note of which areas of your yard receive the most sunlight at various times of the day and plan your landscape design accordingly. Strategically placed trees and shrubs can create shade, block wind, and provide privacy.

5. Assess your needs. Jot down the most important functions your outdoor space should serve. Do you need play areas? Are you considering a pool or spa? Is space for entertaining a priority? Do you need an area for storage? Just like the importance of garage shelving inside your home, creating storage areas outside for quick access is equally important. Search for landscape design tips that help you meet your needs.

6. Incorporate hardscapes. Walkways, patios, driveways, and structures are just as important as the living elements of your landscape design so don’t leave these features out of your plans. Keep the mature size of plants in mind when you place trees near hardscape elements.

7. Set a realistic budget. A complete landscape design with all of the necessary materials is not a cheap undertaking. Decide how much you’re willing to spend before you finalize your plans and take a look at our money saving tips to get more out of your dollar.

8. Put it on paper. Don’t make the mistake of rushing out for supplies before you have a proper plan to guide you. Scaled design plans offer the best results, but a basic sketch and a detailed supply list will suffice for smaller undertakings.

9. Consult a pro. Many landscape architects and garden designers offer consultation services for a low fee. This is a great way to get expert advice and to prevent common mistakes that you may have overlooked during the planning process.

10. Know your limits. DIY projects can be a lot of fun but it’s important to admit your personal limitations and know when to call in a pro. Hiring a qualified local landscape architect or contractor is often a more cost-effective option, especially for larger landscape projects.
We hope you’ve enjoyed these landscape design tips. If you have a favorite design tip you’d like to share, be sure to let us know by sending us a comment!

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