Important Considerations When Planning Landscape Design
Landscaping can transform your yard into one of your favorite places to entertain and relax at home. A thoughtful plan smooths the process and helps you create a functional and attractive space. Read on to learn important considerations when planning landscape design.
Desired Use of the Space
What does your ideal outdoor space look like? What do you want to do in it? Answering these questions gives your project a sense of purpose and guides your decision-making.
You may want a space for dining, entertaining, lounging, or special activities like swimming. Design a space that guests and everyone in your household can enjoy, including kids, adults, and pets.
2. Climate and Soil Type
The USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map is the standard for determining which plants will thrive in your landscape. The USDA bases Zone classes on the average annual minimum winter temperature.
Soil types include sand, clay, silt, and rock. The classification depends on the texture and organic composition of the soil. When you know your soil type, you can select plants that can thrive in that environment or improve the soil through treatment.
3. Sun and Shade Patterns
One of the most important considerations when planning landscaping design is the sun level in different areas of the yard. Light variances create sun and shade patterns that affect temperature, soil moisture, and plant growth.
Shade density and the duration of time without sunlight create the foundation of the four shade classes. Shade classifications include light, partial, full, and dense shade. Areas that receive more than six hours of direct, unfiltered sunlight a day are full sun areas.
Before adding, removing, or shifting anything in your yard, consider limiting constraints that you can’t change or disturb. Even if a plant can grow well in a location, you may not want to put it there for practical purposes.
Constraints include doorways, foundations, mature trees you want to preserve, and underground utilities. Avoid planting trees close to overhead power lines since the branches can limit workers’ access to the line.
5. Garden Style
When choosing a garden style, consider your personal aesthetic, the purpose of the space, and your home’s style. These considerations will help you create a landscape that complements your home rather than clash with it. And you’ll have a space that reflects your personal taste.
Garden styles include traditional, cottage, Japanese, tropical, and many more. Flowering plants, shrubs, ornamental trees, and mature trees create your landscape’s color palette, texture, and dimension.
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