Landscape Design

Laying out a plan onto a template, whether written or digital, is a critical step in designing a landscape. Professional landscape designers begin with a survey and topo map, and normally conceive sketches that are more conceptual, define initial elevations, and lastly, final renderings to bring your dream to life and eventually, it materializes.

A Basic Grid is Needed

The first step is to measure the area(s) in question and translate these measurements into visual mockups. There are plenty of sources online that include tips for drawing a landscape map. After this preliminary step is finished, the positions of fixed features will need to be plotted. Fixed features are exactly that, they cannot be changed or moved. One helpful tip is to include a compass so that you’ll always know where the sunlight and shadows will appear and move to.

Start the RoughSketch

This is the fun part. It’s basically a chess match with multiple concepts, overlays, or copies that let you really open up the possibilities and try out what works and doesn’t work for your client. Go ahead and include elements like bushes, patios, tables, and other items that are drawn to scale and place them in different positions and configurations on this mockup. You can also include lighting effects, koi ponds, any type of buried wire, and access points you’ll need to set everything up.

Helpful tip: Always double check your measurements before equating them to paper or digital. One mistake could be very costly, so be sure to double up and do it right the first time.

Finishing Up

You should now be set on a basic info for traffic with the skeletal layout of your space, this is where you can get creative and start to transform cryptic notes into actual visual pieces that represent green shrubbery, beautiful flower beds, built-in fire pits, concrete pavers, and mulch or straw.

Be Clear About What is What

Landscape plans always use different symbols to indicate the architectural features such as plants, hardscapes, trees, and whatever else may be around. When making your Landscape Plans use symbols to indicate plants, hardscape materials, trees and architectural features. Since there is no actual standard for these symbols, be sure that you and your landscape designer or client are all on the same page. Simplicity is great, but symbols that are indicative of actual appearance can be a huge help, too.