It’s every home or property owner’s dream to transform their empty yard into a majestic and appealing landscape. It’s like when the fairy godmother magically transformed the pumpkin into a beautiful carriage – everyone was left in awe and Cinderella was amazed as well. Oh well, if only transforming our yards into a fascinating masterpiece is as easy as waving a wand, I think everyone would live happily ever after. However, truth be told, landscaping, in reality, demands a lot from you and others who desire to build one: time, effort, attention, money, and patience. It needs hard work, determination, and perseverance despite the challenges that rise to the occasion. Of course, a successful never comes easy but it’s all worth it in the end.
Landscaping in Fayetteville is not easy as well, in fact, it can be challenging – but never impossible. It is usually difficult at first but in the long run, you’ll certainly get a hang of it. There would be a lot of things to take in consideration such as the main purpose of your landscape, your budget, the neighborhood, community guidelines, and of course a well-designed landscape plan which includes the basic principles of landscaping design. Landscaping is divided into two parts: the hardscape and the softscape. Incorporating these two can absolutely define the success of your landscape project.
Hardscape and Softscape Defined
Understanding the parts of landscaping is an essential part of the entire landscaping project. It’s equally important as well to gain knowledge about the components of each part.
Hardscape refers to the heavy landscape materials being used in the landscaping such as stones, rocks, bricks and water-features. It is the part of landscaping which is usually the main component of patios, driveways, patios, arbors and gates. Hardscaping is usually done in the early stages of landscaping to accomplish the area’s add-on features and preferred shape.
Softscape, on the other hand, refers to the light materials used respectively in a landscape such as trees, flowerbeds, soil, vegetable gardens, grass, and other plants. It is also the living part of the entire landscape area. Softscaping adds color, texture, and appeal to the overall landscaping project whether it’s permanent such as evergreens or temporary such as seasonal plants or annuals.
Why Is Hardscape Important?
Hardscape is an integral part of every landscaping whether if it’s for business or residential properties. It comes before you start digging and planting. As what the expert landscapers say, a beautiful landscape is never complete without its hardscape components. The heavy materials make up the rest of the landscape and add up to its aesthetics, depth, and edge.
Hardscaping is many things, but most of all, functional. In some cases, hardscape is also used to refer to some outdoor structures like retaining walls, but mostly the term still refers to paved spaces for the most part. It holds, retains, paves, encloses, protects, transitions, accents, and beautifies. Aside from that, it also gives more room for creative landscaping and paved areas which are beneficial in avoiding soil erosion.
With all of this in mind, you’re probably asking how to create a successful hardscape design that could make your landscape look more appealing yet functional? The answer would be a smart hardscape design. Hardscaping has a wide-ranged of materials used to achieve a beautiful landscaping such as stone, concrete, brick, and so on. It will also take a lot of time, energy, effort, and patience. Now, it’s time that you understand and learns how to create a successful hardscape design.
Learn How To Create A Successful Hardscape
Starting a landscaping project requires a lot from you in order for the best results to be derived. In as much as you plan for your softscape, you should equally consider a lot of ideas for your hardscape. Of course, you’d give anything to know and discover the secrets of the trade and come up with a successful hardscape design just like what you see on TV, brochures or even in catalogs. Isn’t that correct? I seriously bet on that.
Although we can’t all be good at the beginning, certainly, practice makes perfect and eventually, we’ll all be masters. An efficient and well-thought-out hardscape design incorporated with your wisely developed softscape is the secret. Now, you might be asking, how? Alright then, start your day by learning how to create a successful hardscape.
Evaluate The Site
Okay, so first things, first. Before anything else, it’s imperative that you evaluate the site where you want to develop your landscape and where you want to build it specifically. Take a walk around your yard and determine how much space you need for your hardscape. It’s better to consider taking a large portion or area if you’re thinking of adding chairs, tables, benches or any other features so that you can avoid your patio from being cramped in the end.
Contemplate on your design inspiration or any decors that you’d like to use for the hardscape and go over them with your landscape designer for suggestions. Be open about your thoughts when you share it with your designers so that they can get a full view of what you really want and listen to their relevant ideas. You can still adjust your softscape once you’re done with the hardscape, anyway.
Create Balance By Considering Your Landscape
One of the fundamental principles of landscaping design is the balance, and you should take it seriously. Hardscape and softscape are two different parts of every landscaping and there should be a balance between the two – no overlapping. In this phase, you have to be sure that everything you envision to add or include in your design complements and highlights the other.
In order to achieve balance, consider the entire area of landscaping as much as you can especially the area intended for hardscaping. Before you design the elements to include, be sure to ponder on the area. Remember, the hardscape should complement the softscape in order to accomplish a balanced look for your landscape, thus, it should be duly noted on your design. Divide the area evenly, create symmetrical and asymmetrical balance, and assign which element goes where while considering the overall appeal.
Make Room For A Focal Point
Focal points are very significant in every landscaping project, and when you are designing your hardscape, be sure to make room for it. A dramatic or a fascinating focal point can greatly benefit your landscape. By creating a focal point, however, you’re in effect telling the viewer what to look at first or where to direct their attention to. It provides a point of reference within the design where the eye can set its gaze and rest for a little while.
Focal points can be water features, ornaments, trees, outdoor furniture, and a whole lot more. For example, if you’re aiming for a more natural-looking landscape, focal points can be natural objects, such as rocks, ornamental lanterns or winding steps. Also, implementing benches, swings, or contrast of any other non-natural elements into the design is worth considering. Anyhow, focal points can indeed recreate your landscape.
Don’t Ignore Drainage
One of the most common mistakes in hardscaping is ignoring drainage requirements. Of course, before start employing your patios or retainer walls, you must plan how the drainage system of the entire landscape will be affected. Let’s say, you were able to achieve your desired walkway or patio, yet you failed to recognize the value of the drainage system, you’ll end up losing the softscape since the water requirements will be compromised. Thus, better think twice about it.
Furthermore, environmental factors must also be considered, such as planning runoff so that you can capture the water and use it on site. Otherwise, you’ll just waste water by letting it go down the pipe. Now, there are three types of drainage pavers that you could also benefit from permeable pavers, pervious pavers, and porous pavers. These segmental drainage pavers are environmentally friendly solutions for property owners who want beautiful hardscapes without harming the environment.
Keep The Greenery
Remember when we said that there should be a balance between softscape and hardscape? Well then, if you can still recall, then you should bear in mind to keep the greenery. Meaning, as you pay attention to the hardscape, don’t forget the beautification and the functionality. Although there are some landscapes which have little greenery, it only corresponds to the area’s climate and water supply. Let’s take the Southwestern people for example. Sometimes, they opt for a landscape without greenery due to the strong sun and too little water.
Luckily, the climate in Fayetteville is not as rigid. More so, you can have a beautiful hardscape framed by shrub and flowerbeds, and a small piece of lawn can be a good addition. Plus, you can incorporate hardscape with a patch of lawn and include other features to make the entire landscape area a comforting place and space where children can freely play.
Choose A Theme And Appropriate Materials
Alright, so we’ve mentioned the various design inspirations above and you can pick a theme that best suits your taste, then choose the elements that fit within your chosen theme. Once you’ve finalized that, you better stick to the elements and utilize the appropriate materials to meet your design. Select your materials wisely and it should complement your theme as well as your home’s interior and exterior. It’s not necessary to pick just one color or material for the entire design, of course, you can choose a contrast or complement or colors or materials to make it more visually attractive.
Moreover, please be reminded to contemplate on textual variety – it’s highly relevant. The texture is part of the fundamental principles of landscape design and considering it on your hardscape is a great idea. One of the most common examples according to experts is the flagstone underfoot and landscape blocks for low walls and a wood deck with stone or brick for hardscape.
Buy Extra Materials
Right after you’ve chosen your theme and the right materials for the project, remember to buy more than you need. Purchasing extra materials can be of great help especially to accent pretty beds with temporary edgings, or to add stepping stones or landings. The little extra your purchase will not go to waste anyway, it will certainly match the dominant hardscape of your theme. The materials don’t have to be expensive, just be wise in picking cost-effective supplies, and don’t cheap out. In the end, you’ll get what you paid for.
Now, there will be a lot of choices and options available for the materials. In picking the right materials, ask for sample materials and photos to review before you make a final choice. Each type of materials has its own advantages and disadvantages, and if you’re unsure about which type to pick out, discuss it with your designer. After which, you can decide what materials make sense for your specific project or theme.
Work With Professionals
The most important key of all is, to call in the experts. Hardscaping is not as easy as it seems and you must not underestimate the labor, time and effort that goes into it. Given this, you should work with a professional Fayetteville landscape company that can offer expert hardscape designers to do the job efficiently. There are a lot of companies to choose from, hence, you must pick the best one that could provide your specific needs and expectations. Get recommendations and check portfolios and references to help you decide.
Another important thing to do is to keep your communication open and frequent throughout the hardscape design project. Talk about what you want and make sure that your contractor company listens attentively and pays close attention to what you would like. Although DIY can help you save money, it’s still better to hire experts to guarantee the success of your desired hardscaping project.
Overall, to achieve a successful and majestic landscape in Fayetteville, you have to balance softscape and hardscape, deliberately select a theme and build around it. So, make sure to contemplate on what we’ve mentioned above and certainly, you’ll be on the right track. Don’t hesitate to ask professional help and advice from expert designers and landscapers. Their experience and expertise are crucial for the completion of your specific project and having them around can reduce the occurrence of errors. It’s understandable that you are looking forward to your accomplished landscaping project, specifically your hardscape design. Besides, a beautifully-designed hardscape is one that makes you comfortable, provides relaxation, and allows you to fully enjoy your property. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning now!