Backyard Designs Garden & Lawn

Plants make a landscape come to life with colour, texture and scent. Some plants are chosen primarily for their good looks. Others, while still complementing the landscape, are chosen to fulfill a practical purpose such as providing shade, privacy, water management or hiding an unattractive view. Whether you're working with a blank slate or want to rework an existing garden and lawn design, these tips and ideas will help.

A garden that's easy to love

A backyard garden has two components. Softscaping is the living material—the plants that bring beauty and functionality to the landscape. Hardscaping is the garden beds, paths and other inanimate elements in the garden design that give structure, provide access and add to the aesthetics. Hardscaping connects the garden to the home. Softscaping connects it to nature. Together they create a unified and harmonious backyard experience. 

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Finding your style

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The style of your garden will be influenced by your personal taste, the size of your lot, and the architecture of your home and any other buildings on the property. Do you prefer curvilinear, organic shapes? Or are you more about straight edges and geometry? Do you lean more traditional or contemporary in your design taste? Is your home a character-filled Victorian, suburban bungalow or recently-built two-and-a-half storey on a postage stamp?

choosing the plants

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Plant choice depends on your style, space, soil, gardening experience and whether there are specific challenges in your landscape you can use plants to solve. A landscape architect can help you create a design that will look great when it's first planted and grow with you for years to come. Their designs are both beautiful and practical, and can be phased over time.

Making room for the lawn

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We're firm believers that every garden needs a little lawn. It's a place for the children to play, the dog to do its business and a nostalgic nod to the barefoot summers we spent as kids. The size of your luscious grass patch—and whether it's Kentucky bluegrass or artificial turf—depends on your lot size, goals and feelings about maintenance.

from dream to reality

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Planning a backyard garden you'll love involves taking a dream and giving it a reality check. If you want that perfectly unkempt English cottage look, do you have the time, patience and experience to maintain a large perennial garden? If you've dreamed of harvesting your own vegetables and fruit, are you around during the growing season to tend to the plants? An experienced landscape architect can give you a realistic assessment of the maintenance required to keep your dream garden looking its best, and help you find creative solutions so you can have the joy of a garden without the headaches.

Wondering how much green you'll need to spend?

The only green we want you to worry about is your neighbours being green with envy! Check out our free landscaping price guide for a fast, real-time price range for the backyard (or front yard) of your dreams!

Get a FREE backyard design consultation

The foundation of any great landscape design is the people you choose to work with. Your free consultation is a chance to share details about your project, get free advice from a landscape architect, clarify your project goals, budget and timeline, and see if we're the right fit for you!