5 Simple Tips for Garden Design

Designing your own garden can be overwhelming for a first-timer. Whether you choose to call in a pro or do it by yourself, these tips will set you on the right path

Credit: Andrea Sirois

Beautiful gardens don’t just happen on their own; you’ll need a plan when it comes to design

Ruth Olde, president and owner of Blasig Landscape Design, has these tips for homeowners contemplating a renovation of their garden

Create a Garden Wishlist

Time, energy and money never seem to be in abundance at the same time, so some items may be set aside or eliminated. But if you don’t consider everything up front, it is a lot more difficult to make the list bigger mid-process. 

Create a 5- to 10- Year Plan

Even if you complete it immediately, at the end of that time you will know if what you have created or planned, still suits you perfectly, needs a little tweaking, or is ready for another overhaul. Knowing this going in prevents frustration and disappointment when you feel changes are in order – again.

Live with Your Space for at Least Four Seasons Before Making Major Changes

The path of the sun can have an enormous impact on where you want to sit, and where plants want to live – so cast some grass seed, and hurry up and wait.

Ask for Help

You know what you want, but getting started can be a stumbling block. If you have stared at and considered your dilemma long enough, it may be time to call in a professional. Fresh eyes create fresh ideas. A landscape designer should be able to provide any level of assistance that suits your needs – consultation, sketches, scaled drawings, construction details, planting layouts – or be available at an hourly rate for project assistance. 

Ask a Garden Designer

If you design it yourself, consider getting a desginer to spend a few hours with you going over it. His or her experience and repertoire of materials and sources can be time and money well invested.

Originally published in BC Home & Garden magazine. For regular updates, subscribe to our free Home and Garden e-newsletters, or purchase a subscription to the magazine.