When offering landscape design ideas to a new client, learn about their preferences. Do they like things neat and tidy or are they more relaxed and find beauty in natural areas? These are important perspectives of the process that leads to a well rounded design built around the client’s wants versus a design only based on the designer’s vision. Discovering a client’s design style allows you to focus on a planting style that will suit them best. Much of the same plant material can cross over from each design style. It’s just a matter of how the plants are positioned and maintained that defines the landscape style.
There are just as many design styles as there are restaurants in a food court. Different design styles or themes to consider are general styles such as Formal, Informal and Modern/ Contemporary as well as more thematic styles like English cottage, Japanese, xeriscape, and tropical. For now let’s focus on the 3 general styles on how to arrange plant material regardless to your climatic zone. Below is a brief description of each landscape design style.
- Formal- the plant placement is symmetrical with straight lines. Think of straight bed lines and clipped hedges.
- Informal- plant placement with curved beds. Plants arranged in seemingly random position but produce a balanced design. Think of curved beds with plants maintained with selective pruning.
- Modern/Contemporary- clean lines with minimal planting. Use of abstract elements, modern materials and planting in large groupings. Think of geometric shaped beds, bold plant material and dramatic hardscape lines.
Tip: Not sure what style your client favors? Have three illustrations that showcase each style. Have them select which image they prefer. Ask what they like about the image they selected. Take notes and record the words they use to describe the image. Use these same words during the design presentation.
Go above and beyond: Create three design concepts featuring formal, informal and modern styles. Present the customized concepts for your client to select. Use photo rendering designs to fully illustrate each of the styles so the client can see what looks best with their home.
Ask for help: Need assistance developing 3 design concepts or creating the photo renderings? Coke Consulting offers design services bridging the gap from design vision to installation. We serve as an extension of your design team!
Top Left- Before Property Photo
Top Right- Formal Design Concept
Bottom Left- Informal Design Concept
Bottom Right- Modern/Contemporary Design Concept