Beatiful backyard landscape

Fenced backyard with landscape. Decorative trees alongside with fence and green lawn. View of wooden deck with garden swing

If your concept of landscape design extends no further than buying whatever perennials happen to be on sale at the local garden shop, you need to continue reading the article below.

You don't have to be a master landscaper to know there are certain elements that promote a pleasing look to your immediate surroundings, while also having a harmonious relationship with nature.

You won't need a green thumb to get the most out of your landscape design if you simply observe a few of the important principles described below.


Having balance in your landscape design simply means that you have achieved some sense of equality in two or more sections of your landscape.

You can accomplish this balance in one of two ways —symmetrically or asymmetrically.

In symmetrical balancing, you would install similar plants in sections, whereas in asymmetrical balancing, you would achieve a sense of balance by planting different types of plants that have similar 'weight' or significance to their areas.

Being out of balance would be to plant lilies on one side of your yard, and watermelons on the other.


The emphasis in landscaping refers to that point where the observer's eye is first drawn when looking at an environment. This area represents the strongest single element of your design.

The way to draw emphasis to any given area is by using bright colors, interesting types of plants, or some kind of artistic design in your plantings.


It's very important to plant things where they will receive the proper amount of sun and water exposure. This gives them the best chance of thriving in your landscape.

Some plants require full sunshine to do well, whereas others can get by just fine with only an hour or two of sunlight each day. The same is true for water. Some plants will do well in a wet area, while others will be quickly drowned out.


Proportion and size refer to how large objects are in relation to the environment where they're placed. As an example, you might place a tall-growing shrub somewhere around your property, and it would dominate all other plants in that section of your yard.

It's OK to do that, of course, but then you'd also have to consider how to balance that out in other areas of the landscape.


If you're really successful at incorporating the element of unity in your landscape design, observers will note that there is a sense of connectedness among all the plants you're growing and that they all work together to create a whole entity.

This is best achieved by starting out with a plan that aims at a specific style or overall theme, so that unity is built right into your landscape design.

Unity generally involves repetition and consistency, which means you would repeat the planting of certain shrubs or flowers in several areas around your yard, or just around the house.


Yes, it's the spice of life alright, and this is just as true in your landscape as it is in your lifestyle.

If you were to plant just one or two kinds of shrubs or flowers in your yard, you'd be in danger of inspiring a snooze-fest in onlookers. However, by adding a nice variety to your plant choices, you'll have all kinds of interesting plant life to observe and appreciate.

Since 2009, Hambleton Services has been serving Western North Carolina helping commercial/residential property owners with their landscaping needs.

Adam Hambleton

You must be logged in to react.
Click any reaction to login.

Load comments

Thank you for reading!

Please purchase a subscription to read our premium content. If you have a subscription, please log in or sign up for an account on our website to continue.