The 7 Elements of a Landscape
Lawn, Greenscape, Gardens, Hardscape, Paths, Utility Areas & Special Features make up the 7 Elements of a landscape
Let take a closer look…
Let’s talk about your lawn as it is element 1 of the 7 elements of a landscape.
Why is it not categorized in greenscapes? Well, your lawn is such a HUGE part of any landscape, we (and others) feel it deserves its very own category and the TOP SPOT as the 1st element!
Your lawn will dictate a landscaping size and space according to the activities you want to see in your yard. If you love sports, your lawn will have enough room to kick a ball around, pitch a few (small) innings or adorn that volleyball court you’ve always wanted.
If you’re a flower kind of person, you’ll most likely have a lawn that is strategically adorned with flower gardens and you’d be looking at a more natural setting. The lawn may simply be a pathway to connect all the wonderful flower gardens!
If you’re a tree lover, then the lawn takes a back seat as the trees will need a lot of room with either a mulch flower bed or rock gardens surrounding them for easier maintenance.
So you see, your lawn is the first thing we look at when designing your perfect back yard.
Greenscapes! Also known as trees, shrubs, hedges and in some cases, plants! Not just any plants though, permanent plants. These greenscapes are the 2nd the of 7 elements of a landscape.
The biggest thing to remember when discussing Greenscape elements is their size.
You don’t want to plant something that will require a lot of cutting back & pruning OR be blocking a flower garden that needs light. Plan accordingly to size with this element of a landscape. No need to cut down a tree in 10 years because it is now blocking your view.
Size matters in this element!
Gardens are wonderful! Whether a vegetable garden, a flower garden or BOTH, Gardens are the 3rd of the 7 elements of a landscape.
If you’ve got them, we will maintain them. If you want them, we can plant them.
Flower Gardens, they add a splash of color and depth to any landscape. PLUS, they are good for the birds, butterflies and of course, the bees! When planting a flower garden, we keep in mind what feeds the hummingbirds, what the butterflies love and what feeds the bees.
Your flower gardens can include perennials (keep coming back) or annuals (seasonal flowers) or a mix of both. Maintenance is the thing to keep in mind here, if the weeds take over the flowers have no room to grow. And, like the Greenscape element, size matters here as well to get a properly planted flower garden.
And then there’s the art of growing your own food!!! Vegetable gardens are a huge trend and can be in the ground OR in containers! Remember, container gardens totally count!
The gateway to all yards! Pathways are the 4th element to the 7 elements of a landscape.
As with lawns, paths can hold the landscape elements together.
Paths create a flow of walking around and connect your yard. For example, a winding path through your flower garden or up to your front & back door.
The materials used to create a pathway can vary from concrete and mulch to brick and stepping stones. They can be raised (higher maintenance) or level with the lawn (easier maintenance). Choosing your material will give you an overall look of the space from natural to more formal.
Let’s talk about hardscapes, the 5th of the 7 elements of a landscape.
The hardscape can be defined as the permanent, non-plant features in your yard.
Hardscape elements can be fences, gates, patios, decks, arbors, sidewalks, lawn edging, driveways etc. It’s important to keep these in mind when designing your back yard.
Placement is HUGE with this element. There is much to keep in mind such as maintenance; can they trap critters such as ants & voles AND are they easy to mow around? Rock walls are a great example here as a high maintenance hardscape and a great place for ants to set up shop.
Whereas lawn edging can help with maintenance creating clean, smooth lines to mow around.
Fences and gates can be added to create some boundaries OR a decor element, keep in mind the trimming that may need to be done around them.
Hardscapes are a great element to your yard! When adding them to your landscape design, always keep maintenance in mind.
6. Utility Areas
Ah the Utility Areas… the dreaded garbage bins that look terrible in all yards!
The Utility Area is the 6th of the 7 elements of a landscape.
A designated utility area can look attractive and function the way it is meant to be. This is where you put your trash cans, the laundry, the air condition unit, utility boxes, store tools and other supplies, or hide the compost pile… you could even say the doghouse falls into this category. Designing the utility areas in a landscape is a must as none of us want the garbage inside the house and we’d like to keep the rodents out of it outdoors as well. There are many ways to make those bins look good, give them their own spot and be pleased about taking out the trash!
Are you an outdoor laundry dryer kind of person? You can design this into your landscape as well. Putting your clothes line in the right spot AND making it convenient to use ensures you will use it as long as the seasons provide the right kind of drying weather.
7. Special Features
You are unique, your yard should be too. This is secretly a favorite element of ours as special features make your yard unique!
Special features is the 7th and final element of a landscape.
Technically, these can fit into the hardscape element, but we feel it deserves its own category. A special feature can be absolutely anything! A pond, a rock feature, a fountain, a little stream, a water wall, a gazing ball, privacy screens, a hot tub area, statues… really anything at all big or small. This feature boils down purely to personal taste.
We can custom design your special feature to however you want it! You’ve got the ideas, we’ve got the know how.