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How To Draft Your Garden Design Plans

By Modern Landscape

Having garden design plans I feel is the single most important part of creating the perfect landscape.

To get started, head outside with a tape measure and a sketch pad. Make a rough sketch of the property’s outline, then measure all boundaries and dimensions of the lot, as well as the outlines of the house and other structures.

Take your time and measure spaces between things carefully; your sketch may look a little odd, but it will make sense later on. Mark the location of windows and doors on the house, as well as any existing paved areas or structures you plan to leave in place.

Also mark location of any trees or shrubs you plan on keeping. Make note of where north is on your plan; this will help you identify exposures and patterns of sun and shade. If there are any high or low spots on your site, indicate these on your plan.

Once you have made you measurements, you are ready to draw your base plan for your garden design that is to scale, essentially a birds eye view of your garden. Just choose a scale (x number of feet per square) that allows you to fit the entire plan on a single sheet of graph paper.

Start by drawing the outer borders of the property, and then fill in the details.

With your scale drawing in hand, you can use a bubble plan to indicate roughly the different elements of your new garden. Make several copies of your scale plan to sketch on.

Each bubble will represent a particular activity or feature that you want to include in your plan. Bubbles may overlap where space merge. Locate your vegetable garden for example where it will get sun most of the day. Try out several different arrangements before choosing the one that works best for you. This will form the basis for your final landscape garden design.

When thinking of your garden, keep in mind some of the principles of design. In a well designed garden, all the parts work together to read as a whole rather than a hodgepodge of elements.

Each part, whether a deck, planting bed, water feature or seating area, is in proportion to the rest of the garden and in scale with the house and property. A sense of rhythm is achieved by repletion of plants, colors, and materials…enhanced with occasional accents that contrast with their surroundings.

You can learn a lot by studying gardens you visit or see in magazines.

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