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Transforming Outdoor Spaces into a Haven All Your Own

When youre ready to transform your outdoor space into your personal oasis, the best place to start is with a professional landscape designer. Designing outdoor spaces is complex, which is why you need multidisciplinary professionals with skills in design, architecture, horticulture and gardening to make it all work. 

Your landscape designer will begin by asking you about your lifestyle and your must-haves for your ideal outdoor space. Theyll then work with you to develop a design that matches your vision and budget. 

Photo Courtesy of Anton Benedikt | Proform Builds (Seattle I Bellevue, WA)

Theyll offer suggestions for hardscape elements – decks, fences, paving stones, walkways and lighting – as well as the appropriate plants for lawns, trees, shrubs and flowers. The organic interplay of these elements will create the outdoor environment you are envisioning. 

Its often helpful to think of your outdoor space as just one more living area of your home. Hardscape and vegetation features can create distinct spaces for different purposes and moods—with some areas for larger gatherings and others for quiet contemplation.

Your chosen design elements may include a water feature – a pool or fountain – an outdoor kitchen, a fire pit or a quiet bench in a corner for observing songbirds in the morning light. 

Knauf Koenig Group (Naples, FL)

One of the most valuable areas of expertise that landscape designers contribute is their knowledge of horticulture and the plants that are appropriate for your specific site given its location, exposure, soil type, drainage and more. Many landscape designers will recommend that you choose plants that are native to your area. These tend to be more hardy, resilient to pests and generally lower maintenance than imported species.

In climates with hot, dry summers, choosing drought-tolerant plants is a must. A professional can advise you on the best options and may also recommend creating hydrozones – grouping together plants with similar water requirements so that youre making the most strategic use of your irrigation system and conserving water as much as possible.

Similar to working with an architect, your landscape designer will work with you to develop a plan for your outdoor area, and then, once youve approved the plan, hire the team or do the work to make your vision come to life.

Mastercraft Pool & Spa (Jackson Hole, WY)

Investing upfront in professional guidance is a strategic way to avoid future problems – from erosion and plant failure to drainage issues. And by clearly communicating your vision at the start of the process, youll help your design team create an outdoor area that matches the level of maintenance youre interested in as your landscape grows and evolves over time.


By Lynn Sully & Ward Stendahl

Featured Partners

Belgard (National Partner)

Knauf Koenig Group (Naples, FL)

Little Frog Landscaping (Vancouver | Whistler, BC)

Mastercraft Pools & Spa (Jackson Hole, WY)

May Lawn & Landscape (Whitefish, MT)

Montana Fire Pits (Big Sky, MT)

Proform Builds (Seattle I Bellevue, WA)

Stofft Cooney Architects (Naples, FL)

Szabo Landscape Architects (Bend, OR)

Quilter Construction (Park City, UT)

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