Plant Landscape Designs

Landscape designs such as this are well-planned. image by Public Domain, Adrian Pingstone/Wikimedia Commons, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Garden.zoo-Bristol.jpg

Overview

Plant a designed garden space by selecting flowers that look good together, that can grow in the space provided and that contain a range of sizes, colors, textures and types. Many gardening retailers offer instructions and plants for ready-made landscape designs for particular areas, such as front-entries, around foundations, mailboxes and trees, along fencing or in stand-alone gardens within lawns. To create your own design, keep in mind plant height, sun or shade needs, and the flowering period of each plant. Place borders around the area for a more defined look. Water and fertilize as you would for any other garden area.

Step 1

Select your landscape design area, keeping in mind the sun or shade that plants will receive there. Also consider whether the soil is good enough to support new plants. For example, very dry or compacted soil must be broken up and enriched to support new plants, and weeds must be eliminated before new plants are installed. Consider the drainage of the area: Does it hold water after heavy rain? Is it a runoff area from gutter spouts where plants will be washed away? Or does it normally stay dry, even during rain, and require frequent watering? Will your design require removal of established lawn grasses, or is it already cleared for planting? Think about these issues as you choose a landscape design or plan one of your own.

Step 2

Choose a ready-made landscape design, or create one that includes plants and the look you want. A ready-made plan will usually come with a paper showing where each plant goes. Do the same for yourself by drawing a simple outline for your planting area. Think about the colors, heights and textures of plants, along with their particular growing needs. Mix flowering and non-flowering plants for the most interesting look. In your design, put tall plants at the back of a linear planting area, such as along fences and foundations, and in the middle of round or square designs, such as around mailboxes, light poles or under trees. All other plants should be placed in graduated heights, with the shortest and smallest at the front or edge of the garden design.

Step 3

Plant your landscape designs from the inside out. That is, start with the tallest plants first, working down to the smallest ones, which will be at the edge or front of the design area. This makes the project more organized, keeps smaller plants from being stepped on while larger ones are being installed and lets you see the design clearly as it develops. Apply mulch around all new plants to retain soil moisture and discourage weed growth. Placing a border around the area will create a neat, cultivated look. Water and fertilize as you would any other garden bed.

Tips and Warnings

  • Creating successful landscape designs is fun but can be labor-intensive. Be prepared to spend several hours or a couple of weekends installing a new garden area, especially if it is large.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden design plan
  • Plant list
  • Measuring tape
  • Digging tools
  • Plants
  • Mulch

References

  • Scotts Miracle-Gro Learning Library
  • University of Missouri Extension Service

Who Can Help

  • U.S. National Arboretum
Keywords: landscape design, planting, flowers

About this Author

Patrice Gravino is a professional writer with more than 20 years experience and began writing for eHow in 2008. As an AP journalist, she has been published in the "San Francisco Chronicle," the "New York Times," the "Los Angeles Times" and the "Dallas Morning News." She has a Bachelor of Arts in English from Regis University and is a certified master gardener.

Photo by: Public Domain, Adrian Pingstone/Wikimedia Commons, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Garden.zoo-Bristol.jpg