The Landscape & Garden Design Process

On these pages you will find information about working with a designer. It will help you understand the process they work through to achieve your ultimate landscape.

Most Landscape Architects or Designers work through a formal design process made up of a series of important incremental steps before presenting a final concept. This is an invaluable, exciting process which allows you to explore different options as you refine your ideas.

Prepare your budget realistically to allow for the fees involved. Ask your designer to give you cost estimates for each stage of the work so you can make your decisions based on what you can afford.

Remember you’re paying for the right to have a designer’s skill and knowledge focused on your property. The input you receive will enhance your site functionally and aesthetically. A well-chosen designer will provide you with excellent plans that fit both your landscape and budget.

Quality ongoing maintenance is one of the most important aspects of any landscape, so ensure that you consider maintenance as an integral part of both budgeting and design. You need to know who will maintain the garden and how much can you can afford to spend on it annually.

Your landscape designer will assess and advise on:

  • Site conditions: location in terms of soil type, weather patterns and their possible variables (sun, wind, rain or snow), drainage, privacy, noise and any other impacting factors.
  • Your vision and needs. They will want to know how you ‘see’ your ideal garden and the uses you wish it to fulfil. Examples may include questions about the style or theme of the garden you have in mind and whether or not you want a child’s play area, a swimming pool, a barbecue area, decks or perhaps a vegetable garden.
  • The choice of plants for any new planting areas as well as looking at the state and suitability of any existing planting.
  • The context of your site. They will take into consideration the style of architecture of your home, its placement on the site and relationship to neighbouring buildings or natural features (beaches, bush, farmland, etc.)
  • Planning and building consents

NB. In most instances, landscaping adds significantly to a property’s monetary value. However, it’s possible to spend too much. If you’re worried you might be overcapitalising, you should seek expert advice either from a registered valuer or real estate agents in your area before finalising your plans.

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