It is easy to appreciate the beauty of an exquisite garden or park with perfectly placed trees, precisely trimmed hedges and vibrant, colorful flowers. However anyone who has tried to landscape their own yard knows creating a visually appealing outdoor space takes more than just a green thumb – it is truly an art and a science. Landscape architecture requires planning, design and an understanding of the relationship between nature and culture.
Businesses and home owners alike understand the value of curb appeal and a good first impression. Many successful construction projects integrate the design of the building and exterior site so landscaping is part of the whole aesthetic, not just a beautification after-thought.
Next time you see a well-designed space, see if you can identify any of these 8 landscape design principles:
Unity: Seamless design through consistency. For example using elements with similar characteristics such as plants with similar height, size, texture,and color.
Texture: Fine vs. course, heavy vs. light, thin vs. dense, light vs. shade
Color: Set the mood or theme, generate the greatest appeal, types of colors (ex. bold and rich vs. calm and muted)
Simplicity: Degree of repetition
Emphasis: The focal point of the design
Form: 3-dimensional aspect of each piece
Line: Define the space, in essence creating outdoor rooms
We tried the same exercise with a few of our favorite landscapes designs from around the world.
We find that the smooth texture and form of this design draws us in highlighting the size of the design. Cells of Life by Charles Jencks – Edinburgh, Scotland
The simplcity, unity, and emphasis of this installation shows the impressive feat of using sand as the only medium. Temporary Installation by Jim Denevan – California
We’re intrigued by the use of line and form to create an outdoor room set in the middle of NYC. High Line Park by James Corner – New York, NY
Immediately we’re drawn to the color and texture that the wisteria brings to the archway drawing visitors into the tunnel. Wisteria Tunnel at the Kawachi Fuji Gardens – Japan
We got lost in exploration of the simplicity and texture which add to the magnitude of the gardens. The Gardens of Versailles by André Le Nôtre – Versailles, France
Redefining what landscape design/architecture is. It’s no longer just about plants but the use of various mediums to create an intriguing landscape. Garden of Australian Dreams by Richard Weller and Vladimir Sitta – Canberra, Australia