How to Design a Landscape

Designing a landscape can be a breeze with the proper resources and tools.
Set Up Mock Landscaping Plan Before Planting

Set Up Mock Landscaping Plan Before Planting

Mock up the planting plan by using garden pots as a way to visualize where plants will be located. It is easy to move the containers around until the look is satisfactory.

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Related To:

If you want to know how to design a landscape, there are more resources available today than ever before to help you get started.

Below are a few steps for how to design a landscape, including landscape design tools, virtual landscape design and helpful templates that will allow you to complete much of the design work yourself.

Start virtually. Thank goodness for computers and the Internet. Although they sometimes seem to be at odds with the natural world, tech gadgets have made designing and planning a landscape much more simple for the average person. Dozens of landscape design tools are available online via a simple search. Templates are great, because they allow you to create and move landscaping zones around to get the right fit – sort of like putting puzzle pieces together. You might also discover a configuration or zone you hadn’t even though of! Try them out and see how far you can go. 

Consult a pro. Online tools can be a great way to get a feel for ideas you like and zone solutions that might work for your yard. However, nothing beats professional consultation from a landscape designer. Pros visit your property and understand topographic issues that a computer can only guess; landscape designers think ahead to avoid problems that could arise with drainage or sun exposure, and they can recommend or provide landscape installers to handle the labor for you.

Know your dollars and sense. It’s not impossible to create a beautiful landscape design on a small sum, but setting a realistic budget will greatly aid you in your choices – both for plant life and hardscapes. Budgeting for labor is equally as important as your costs to fill your landscape zones with plants and materials. Getting an estimate from a landscape designer or installation company can help you decide how much, if any, of the project you’d like to install yourself in order to save money.

Consider maintenance. In our busy world, who has time to maintain an intricately landscaped property by herself? Garden enthusiasts enjoy the work of weeding and pruning, but busy lifestyles may not allow the required time to maintain multiple landscaping zones on a single property. Decide how much – if any – of your landscaping you’ll maintain yourself. Then, budget and design accordingly to include plans for hired hands or low maintenance plants.

Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Plan a Landscape Design

Learn the four steps to creating a scale plan for your landscaping project.

How to Illuminate Your Yard With Landscape Lighting

Create a stunning landscape that can be enjoyed during the day and night with inventive outdoor lighting solutions.

Kitchen 2.0: Design a Smarter Cooking Space

From high-tech gadgets to space-saving solutions, these clever kitchen updates will streamline your cooking and cleaning routine.

How to Distress Furniture

What's old is chic again. Follow these step-by-instructions for achieving a distressed look on furniture.

How to Freeze Corn

Treat your family to the fresh-picked flavor of corn on the cob—all year long. It’s not hard to freeze this summertime favorite.

How to Freeze Peaches

Tips for making your harvest last.

How to Freeze Apples

Save that apple bounty for the months ahead.

1,000+ Photos

Browse beautiful photos of our favorite outdoor spaces: decks, patios, porches and more.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.