Is it time to design your first garden? Do you want to give your existing landscaping a makeover? Have you moved into a home with landscaping in need of some rehabilitation or redesign?
If so, you’ll need to carefully consider several aspects of landscape design. Put simply, it’s about what you want to do and what you’ve got to work with. Finding the right solution requires close attention to the following factors:
Determine the Function(s) of Your Landscaping
Before you create a design, establish what you’re going to use your outdoor spaces for. Common uses include play areas for children (and adults), relaxation, gardening, nature appreciation, swimming, cooking, dining, and entertaining.
Once you know what the purposes of your spaces are, you can start planning design elements to fulfill them.
Who’s Using Your Outdoor Spaces?
Closely related to determining function is knowing who the users are. For instance, if you have pets or small children, you’ll need to consider landscaping features that accommodate their needs. Examples include shaded areas for dogs when they’re outside, plants that won’t be toxic to pets, and minimizing hazards to children.
Consider Climate, Environment, and Planting Zone
Now it’s time to select the plants you want in your landscaping. Obviously, you want plants suited to the conditions in which they’ll be growing. There are three things to consider:
- Climate– long-term weather patterns including seasons, temperatures, and rainfall.
- Environment– here, this refers to the immediate surroundings. You’ll want to look at sun and shade, direction of water flow and drainage, views, and wind exposure.
- Planting Zone– Conditions such as temperatures and rainfall determine what planting zone you live in. North America has 11 separate zones based on plant hardiness. Areas of North Carolina fall into Zones 6, 7, and 8, with the mountainous sections mostly in 6 and the southeastern region, including Fayetteville, in 8. Learn more about planting zones and find yours.
Next Up: Soil Type
Now that you know what plants will thrive where you live, you have to determine the soil type you have and the nutrients in it. Sandy soils exist in much of North Carolina, and if that’s what you have, you have to select plants that will grow in them. Other common soil types include clay and rocky soils.
Don’t Overlook Hydrozones
If planting zones take a macro approach, hydrozones take a micro one. They refer to how water behaves in different parts of your yard. For instance, there may be a low spot where water collects and is slow to drain, so you’ll want plants that thrive in wet conditions there. Likewise, spots that dry out quickly call for plants that need less water.
Select the Style Right for You
Finally, determine what landscape style will work best. Many people opt for a style that complements that of their home. Others want landscaping that reflects their personality or creates a certain mood or effect. Possibilities are virtually endless, but incorporating style into design is critical.
Work with a Qualified Expert
Landscape design considerations are many and can be complex. That’s why sometimes the best solution is to work with a Landscaping expert.
LandArt Solutions is a Fayetteville-based landscaping firm with more than 20 years of industry experience in its leadership. We can work with you from start to finish to design beautiful landscaping that’s perfect for you and your property and comes in on time and on budget.