“Landscape Gardener” … “Landscape Architect” …”Landscape Designer” … “Garden Designer” … “Landscape Contractor” … there are so many terms for landscaping companies who might help with your garden project, no wonder you’re confused!
Can’t I just use a builder?
Thinking of calling in Joe who did your neighbour’s loft extension? Although they might be competitively priced and come highly recommended, they might also be completely wrong for your garden project. Landscaping is very different from other types of building construction. To do a good job, it requires specialist knowledge and experience which is why it is worthwhile seeking out landscaping companies rather than regular builders:
Soil and Drainage
It’s critical to get the basics right
- Does your builder know their top-soil from their sub-soil?
- Can they recognise the soil type and how compact it is? Is it suitable to build your new patio on?
If not, you could end up with flowers that don’t thrive, puddles around the garden and drainage problems…
Is your builder abreast of the latest regulations?
- You may require planning permission for some elements of your new garden for example, if your new fence is too tall.
- Your new decking or outdoor staircase may require building regulations and/or planning permission.
- Other regulations that may affect you are Party Wall and Sustainable Urban Design Regulations.
If a job’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well… and doing it well might even be the cheaper option in the long run!
A good garden designer will work with you to make the most of your budget, advising on where it’s worth investing in a quality product and where savings could be made.
A good garden designer will have a detailed knowledge of products and materials to help you make your selections. They can advise on durability, how quickly materials will weather, as well as having a keen sense of the overall aesthetic. They’ll work with you to decide on the best design solution for you, considering how you would like to use your garden and how long you are prepared to spend on maintaining it in the future!
Work of some of the garden designers on Design for Me – click to see their full profiles:
A rose by any other name..?
The Garden Designers: “Garden Designers”, “Landscape Designers” and “Landscape Architects”
All of these terms refer to someone who could potentially design and plan your new garden. A Garden Designer will generally have a more focussed interest/experience in dealing with domestic gardens, whereas Landscape Designers or Landscape Architects might also work on larger landscaping or public realm projects.
The Garden Builders: “Landscape Gardeners” and “Landscape Contractors”
They are both essentially builders who specialise in planting and construction.
Do you need a Garden Designer and a Builder?
The answer to this is probably, yes (see the point about good design above!). However, many of the above named professionals can offer a design and build service so you will only have one point of contact. They may do all the design and building work single-handedly, but most likely will have an in-house team or close partnership with a designer/builder.
Finding the right person for your garden project
The key to a successful project is good research and planning and it’s wise to get a garden design professional involved as early as possible. Finding the right one can be a bit of a minefield, which is why we created Design for Me in the first place. You can register your project with us for free and we’ll find the right garden designer/builder for your project in no time!
Emily Design for Me