DIY Landscape Design: How to Get Started


They are always available and have expert and attentive staff. We have always been satisfied and confident in their service. The owner, Chase, is always available for any service needs and ensures we are satisfied (especially if you are a business and have an emergency as we once did). Pricing is also very competitive and the service is outstanding. Choosing the landscape designer that’s right for you can be a daunting task as there’s a lot to consider.

He uses this approach when he is creating a design for a landscape contractor. Many people view professional fees with skepticism, but it can be worth it.

So, if you want to plan your landscape design, this post is for you. You’ll learn how to effectively design your landscape and how to choose what’s best for you based on the uniqueness of your property, among other things. This approach helps because you can tell the client right away what the cost will be…instead of going back to the office, crunching numbers and possibly losing the client’s interest. You can look at or another real estate website to see how many acres or square feet there are at a site. Cohan uses an hourly rate to calculate her fee, and she starts charging from the minute she gets into her truck to go visit a client. Keeping up with hours can be a little difficult when switching back and forth between clients, so consider using management software to keep track of your time. I’m Cam, the former deputy editor of Real Homes who worked on the site from 2020 to 2023.

Read more about Landscaping Design here.

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You can also create a list of questions to ask the designer during the meeting. Ask things like if they use subcontractors, how long the project will take, and how much maintenance the design will require. Some are self-taught, and some have studied, but landscape design doesn’t necessarily require a license. Landscape architecture does, however, since architects also reshape the land, design service lines, and plan drainage and irrigation systems. Garden remodeling can sometimes involve grading the terrain and leveling the surface. Land grading costs $100 to $3,400 for an average yard and is often necessary for uneven or steeply sloped land.

How to Evaluate Your Landscape

Award-winning designer, artist, and educator, Lisa Nunamaker is the creator of the website, Paper Garden Workshop. This is a spirited place to learn garden design and landscape graphics. Lisa uses her illustration skills to teach these beautiful topics both online at Paper Garden Workshop and in the Department of Horticulture at Iowa State University. To top it off, Lisa also holds degrees in landscape architecture and is registered in the state of Iowa. Plus, she currently serves on the Association of Professional Landscape Designers National Board of Directors. You know what the conditions are like (e.g., morning sunlight, afternoon shade, good drainage) and you know how much space you have available. You can research them online, in plant catalogs or at the nursery, where each plant will have a tag telling you what conditions it prefers and how big it will get at maturity.

Design Renderings

Read more about Sprinkler System Installation here.

We understand that property owners need to reap rewards from paying for an expert plan while still feeling comfortable with handing over the funds for a design fee. You may be tempted by the offer of a landscape contractor to not charge for their landscape design, but remember you most often get what you pay for. Once you add more projects to your wheelhouse, you’ll be able to give clients a better idea of how many hours you’ll need to work.

Limit the Plant Variety in Small Spaces

Also, the surrounding natural environment and any existing structures, such as walls or fences, should be considered in the design. Rhythm is established when something in the landscape is repeated with a standard interval. When it comes to landscape design, the term “interval” typically refers to the spacing between objects or features in the design. When designing your landscape, be creative but keep things less cluttered and avoid too many shapes, curves, and textures.

We will be spending a good deal of time reviewing how to identify competitors in your field, and how to make actionable goals around the information you discover. When I try to mentor new business owners I often use analogies to help illustrate my point and it is usually fairly helpful as a tool to understanding how we will approach a problem. So for this introductory post, I want to use a rather cliché but relevant architectural analogy. Bring new life to a tired walkway (or finally create the path you’ve always wanted)! Replace sparse gravel or overgrown pavers with an elegant stone walkway, rustic stepping stones, or sharp brickwork to create a welcoming entrance to your home. If you want to take you eco-friendly habits to the next level, get your yard approved by the National Wildlife Federation™ as a Certified Wildlife Habitat®! Go through their checklist in your front yard and back yard to see what requirements you meet already and which will require some updates.

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