Turning a backyard into an inviting and comforting oasis away from the noise and stress of the outside world can be a rewarding adventure for a homeowner. Not only can owners benefit from color changing seasons, but each new year is an opportunity to blend new with the old in their backyard landscape design. Plants grow and spread as the design blends into to an ever more beautiful environment.
Nursery professionals are the best resource for advice to achieve the desired effect. They understand how plants complement each other aesthetically, but also growth rates and compatibility among different types of vegetation.
A beautiful landscape does not require a massive investment. However, a starting budget can be a guide for what is accomplished that season and more can be added each year. Landscape designers can create an outstanding starting plan and “phase-in” new elements each year.
Collaboration among the homeowner, the landscape designer, and the nursery can yield magnificent results at a reasonable cost.
Creating a Backyard Landscape Design
Begin with a sketch. A landscape designer makes topographical measurements and uses a property survey as a starting point. With this information and a target focal point, a series of sketches will show the major elements of the backyard plan.
Whether using a computer program or staying with drawings on graph paper, plot the underlying grid of the area. According to hgtv.com, National Gardening Association supplies tips for creating a workable landscape plan.
- Set fixed features, such as the back of the house, garage, fences, trees, entryways, sprinkler systems, and so forth.
- Identify the directions, east and west, to understand where the sun will track.
- Try out all your ideas. Experiment with pathways, shrub and tree placement, planting areas, water features and additional fixed elements. If sketching, use tracing paper over the basic sketch to try out various ideas. With a computer program like Google Sketchup, several designs can be tried and saved.
- Add patio or seating areas and items like a fire pit as the focal points.
- Consider practical matters such as wheelbarrow access, electrical outlets, irrigation, water faucets, and lighting.
Final Backyard Landscape Design
Plan plantings to provide the amount of color, contrast, and privacy you desire. Sketch in the types of plantings and planting areas to provide the shade, color, and seasonal change that keeps the area attractive throughout the year.