In our previous blog, we explored the most basic principles of design needed to create an orderly and beautiful landscape design. As landscapers, we specialize in crafting unique, stunning landscapes that work self-sufficiently. We’re passionate about designing an outdoor environment for you that you won’t just like to look at, you’ll love to go out and be a part of! To create something you’ll really love, though, we’ll need a spot of guidance. And, like we’ve said before, though Pinterest can be a powerful tool in showing us the kinds of things you like in landscaping, we’ll need a more concrete example of design expectations for us to really craft something unique and astonishing. For that to occur and for our communication on the matter to be uninhibited, it’s important that you understand the basic ideas behind landscaping design.
With these important principles in mind, you’ll be able to better communicate to us what you’re looking for in a landscape and we’ll be able to execute your vision with more precision. We’ll also be able to explain why we’ve made tweaks to certain ideas that you’ve had in order to make a more efficient gardening system that will save you time and money in the long-run.
Balance Your Contrast
Contrast is a form of balance in design and throughout your landscape. You’ll need to employ multiple types of balance and contrast to get the most of the visuals available to you. There’s two sorts of balance you’ll need to utilize: symmetrical and asymmetrical. Obviously, in this case, the contrast would be considered asymmetrical. When you’re particularly proud of a certain element of your yard, you’ll want it to have high-contrast with the rest of the yard to help it stand out above the rest. For example, if you’re trying to communicate a Mediterranean look, you’ll want to leave the poplar trees you planted sort of isolated, or only ringed with low profile plants like ground covers so that they remain the first thing to draw the eye.
Keeping your plant installations a mostly similar shade of green will make lighter green foliage and interesting ground covers like a Jacob’s ladder look all the more stunning against the background. This asymmetrical design is one of the easiest and most beautiful to create because it’s balanced by the unity among the background that’s facilitating the high-contrast. After all, red roses look so dramatic because they’re framed by the green thorny leaves of the bush they’re growing from. If those same red roses are set next to an orange-leaved bush, the contrast will melt away.
Color and Proportion
As we mentioned with contrast and balance, the color and proportion of, say the aforementioned, poplar trees could make or break your landscaping design. The difference between making the color pop and look remarkable all has to do with two key design principles: Proportion and color. These can be remarkably difficult to balance because plants are bound to grow, and when you first invest in your line of hypothetical poplar trees, they won’t be very large. So making young plants look good when the framing in the landscape is meant for their larger future selves can be difficult. However, playing with color and ground coverings can make the line of the eye raise and follow the growth rate of the trees as they develop and become more of a presence in your landscape than they once were.
Color plays a huge part in this as warmer colors will make the object seem larger and look as if it’s maybe even advancing toward you, where the cooler hues of your landscaping design will seem to add distance and make the yard look larger. That’s why a line of pine trees can look fathomless and rows of poppy flowers can look rather close and manageable to traverse, regardless of the actual amount of space either of those plant bodies take up.
Keeping this in mind, we can turn our attention to the proportions of your yard and how to manipulate color to better represent the colors of your landscape to better represent how you want the yard to look as your plants develop and grow. Keeping proper proportions in mind should help you line up your desired plants quite easily. Using the same poplar tree example from before, you could use proportion and station the saplings not-so close together to allow them time to grow while placing a very fast-growing, warm-colored ground cover at their base. This will make the poplars look more developed than they are, and will give that area of your yard a more mature look than it would have if everything surrounding the poplars was taller than it ought to be. For example, ringing the trees that have only just reached a full 6 feet with 2 foot tall bushes will diminish their growth and make that area of your landscape look overgrown quickly.
Think of setting up your landscape the way you might set up a drawing of a landscape. The tallest organisms should be in the background and the shorter organisms should mostly be in the foreground.
If all of this feels overwhelming to you, don’t fret. Knowing these terms and how they’re used in regard to landscape design is merely for you to have a better grasp on how design elements can work together in your landscaping to create a sense of unity as well as a well-formed aesthetic. We can handle the details of creating a self-sustaining, beautiful landscape that you’ll be dying to spend time in and show off to your friends and family. Contact us and schedule your next consultation, and then go out and grab some lawn furniture so you can start making the most of your outdoor space now.