Planting design should always have a purpose. It’s just that the degree of purpose can vary.
For example, one role (or purpose) may be purely enjoyment – a garden designed to entertain.
Then, on the other hand, a planting design can be created to serve a functional role (e.g. screening, erosion control, etc.).
Well, it’s quite obvious what the homeowner wanted to do in the picture above – soften the view of the side of the house.
And it appears as though the landscape company that did this job fulfilled the customer’s request. Well, in a way they did. I do see less of the house now than before the plants were installed.
Should the customer be pleased with the job? Possibly, but only if:
If there’s one common denominator in good design it’s unity. That is, some relationship between the elements that brings them together in composition.
Unfortunately, this planting design looks more like a collection of plants at a garden center’s clearance sale.
And lets not forget that: A) plants grow, and B) each plant type has its own size potential.
If you consider the growth of most of the plants chosen and their spacing from the house…well, it won’t be long before these plants are growing right into the building.
You can’t possibly do planting design well without a reasonable amount of plant knowledge and the willingness to “look up” information you don’t know.
There are two injustices with this planting pictured above:
For the homeowner: As with any other home improvement project, know who you’re dealing with.
Referrals are always a good place to start. Look at other jobs the company has done, especially older ones so you can see how the plantings are developing.
Speak to the homeowners and find out what was their experience with the company. A little investigating and research can mean the difference between a good design and investment — and a costly mistake.
For the landscape contractor: Planting design is what separates the professional companies from “the others”.
This is the knowledge and skill that takes time to acquire. In fact, it’s an area that you should never stop learning in because it is vast and always expanding.
This is the expertise that sets your projects apart – not only when they are first installed, but most importantly, many years later.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment.
Landscapes are complex, and shortcomings anywhere in the process can affect the project… and your peace of mind.
My approach is process-oriented. I break things down from planning to implementation — and make sure everyone is kept informed.
My goal is to alleviate concerns such as design decisions, costs, workmanship and material quality. I want folks to stress less and actually enjoy the process.
©2023 Hickory Grove | All rights reserved