Achieving an Integrated Approach to Soft and Hard Landscaping
Two of the key elements of gardening are hard and soft landscaping. The former will give you a basic structure, while the latter will provide the organic, living part of your garden. It is important to integrate both aspects into landscape design to achieve a garden where all parts work in harmony.
Compass Garden and Landscape Design provide high-quality landscape design in Weston-super-Mare and throughout Somerset, as well as the surrounding counties. Here are our top tips on how to combine hard and soft landscaping for those of you considering refreshing your garden.
It can seem both attractive and convenient to have a concrete or gravel drive. However, concrete can create problems with water run-off. So too can gravel, which also has the irritating habit of getting caught in the soles of shoes and being brought indoors.
Using permeable gravel, which allows the water to soak through or breaking up a driveway with grass strips between the vehicle’s wheels will alleviate these issues.
Children’s Play Areas
During their early years, children’s play areas start out with more hard features such as swings, sandpits, or bare areas of grass for them to play on.
As they grow older and learn to appreciate nature more, you can begin to introduce more ‘soft’ elements. For example, replace sandpits with flower beds or vegetable patches (they will be more likely to eat food they grow themselves), and instead of a paddling pool, consider having a small pond installed if they are old enough to appreciate its dangers, as well as all it can teach them about the natural world. On this note, built-in equipment made out of natural materials will blend in better with the garden.
From a design perspective, it may be better if a play area is positioned close to the house, so that you can see your children easily, for safety reasons. However, it is also important to balance this with the need for some shade.
Know Your Plants
There is no point building features like rockeries unless you know what plants will grow best in your soil and climatic conditions – such as average temperature and rainfall.
At Compass, we will be able to advise you on what plants will best suit your garden. For example, in wetter conditions, marsh marigolds and the perennial astilbe provide lots of colour, while giant rhubarb will give you a lot of greenery (but no fruit). In dry or drought conditions, you can have cacti and other succulents that still provide plenty of greenery and colour.
We have planting consultancy service that is available to all our customers in south-west England, that will not just help you to choose the best plants for your garden, but source the plants from a network of suppliers at very competitive rates when compared to public nurseries and garden centres.
Decking and Paths
This element of hard landscaping is less about integration and more about allowing you to appreciate the softer parts of your garden, for example, flower beds. It is best to place decking and paths in parts of the garden which you wouldn’t otherwise be able to grow anything because the ground is either too wet or on a slope.
How Compass Garden and Landscape Design Can Help
Compass Garden and Landscape Design are specialists in meeting the soft and hard landscape design needs of customers in Weston-super-Mare, as well as all across Somerset, Wiltshire, and as far afield as Newport in Wales.
We provide a complete service that ensures every part of your garden will work in harmony. If you are interested in giving your garden a whole new look, then contact us to arrange a consultation. We will then provide you with an initial outline of your new garden. Following further discussions, we will produce a full garden design and put you in touch with reputable contractors to carry out the work.
If you would like to know more about Compass Garden and Landscape Design, our planting consultancy or to book an initial consultation, <a href=”/contact/”>click on this link</a> and fill in the online form.