What are the basic principles of landscape design?

What are the basic principles of landscape design?

In the world of landscape design, you might think that you can just go with the flow of the land. However, you will want to follow some rules to give your design a boost in your outdoor spaces. Landscape design is more than adding a few plants and flowers to your yard. You want a design that is functional and pleasing as well. Here are some of the basic principles of landscape design.

Rule of Significant Enclosure

With a significant enclosure, the vertical edge of the space must be at least one-third the length of horizontal space. At that size, you will feel a sense of enclosure, and it goes a long way to create a feeling of refuge as you embrace nature. If you want to design a more relaxed environment, you should know the right measurements for the job. You can see examples of this design work in a local park. If you sit near a tree or wall and move away, you can get a great sense of enclosure. With this type of design, you will have a sense of scale and give your space a feeling of openness.

Always Follow the Regulating Line

If you have any formal architectural education, then you probably know about the concept of the regulating line. With this rule, you can designate an architecture element or landscape feature to create an imaginary line to connect and organize your design. When you do this in your yard, you can give the space a more cohesive and orderly arrangement. The regulating line is valuable since it can provide order to your area and still give the design room to create a relaxing environment. For many designers, the regulating line is what can separate a professional from an amateurish design.

Get Proportions With the Golden Rectangle

One particular rule goes back to the days of the ancient Greeks and Egyptians. A golden rectangle features sides whose lengths are in the golden ratio, which is approximately 1.618. The golden ratio is the ratio of proportion that can create a sense of balance and order. You can use the golden ratio with the golden rectangle to give your outdoor space more harmony and unity. Many landscape designers use these measurements to layout patios, arbors, terraces, and lawns.

Always Consider the Size

With any landscape design, you need to think about the size of the space. You might want to add a small element in a particular spot, but you need to think about how it will look in a few years. In a garden, plants, bushes, and flowers tend to grow bigger. As a result of that, you almost always want to go big in your yard. These elements might seem fine for now, but they will probably look underwhelming in a couple of years. Landscape design is about creating space that will look great for many years to come.

Plant from Big to Small

You need to design your ornamental elements according to the area. When planting, make sure to start with the big elements, such as trees. These features can anchor your yard, and you can base your design principles on them. You can see the outdoor space in a compositional way and provide a better sense of overall structure. Once the trees are set, then you should fill in space with shrubs and flowers. It may be hard to resist the temptation to plant flowers first, but you need to observe the area with the bigger elements before adding in the finishing touches.

Plant in Masses

Many designers might want to plant in the cottage garden design that features a wide range of various plants. However, there is something to be said about seeing a large quality of one plant in a single space. For many people, this simple element can be pleasing to the eye. You can use something like ornamental grasses to give a boardwalk its sense of unity. Repetition can also help to give your space a more planned look. You should be careful not to overwhelm a yard. Too much of one variety can also come off as dull and uninspiring. You need to find a balance in your space.

Add a Pop of Color

If you want to give your outdoor space another dimension of design, you need to add color. With warm colors, the objects seem closer to you in the yard. If you use cool colors, then the opposite is true. You can use greens and blues also to add a level of perspective to the yard.

Gradual Change

Transition is vital for your landscape design. You never want a stark change between elements. By changing the plant sizes or color intensity, you can achieve this throughout your outdoor space. Transitions can take the form of many shapes, features, and textures.

Choose Contrast and Harmony

You will want to achieve a balance between contrast and harmony in your landscape design. The contrast will help to highlight elements, and harmony will give those elements a unified look. You can contrast certain features to draw attention to specific details. By using complementary colors side by side, you can achieve harmony and contrast.

Make Sure to Plant Well

No matter your design, you want to make sure that the elements are designed at the right height and size. There is no point in planting an expensive plant, shrubs, or flower in a poorly designed landscape. If you don’t follow some rules, then your design will look poorly planned out and uninspired.

Plan Your Landscape for Your Home or Business

At Charlestown Landscaping, we can help you achieve the landscape of your dreams. Our horticultural experts can find the right elements to add to your outdoor spaces. In addition to landscape design, we also offer lawn care services, snow removal, and sealcoat applications. We want to make your outdoor space enjoyable throughout the seasons.

For more information about creating your dream landscape, make sure to fill out the contact form.

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