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Landscape Components: Understanding Softscape and Hardscape when it comes to Landscape Installation

Landscaping is the art of arranging an outdoor space to make it more attractive, functional, and harmonious with the natural environment. Two key components of landscape installation that landscape architects and designers frequently mention are Softscape and Hardscape. Here’s what encompasses each category.

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Softscape Elements

Softscape is the living, horticultural elements of a landscape design. These are the components that are fluid and changing as they grow and adapt to climate and other conditions. Softscape elements in a landscape are critical in producing various sensory experiences and feelings including smell, acoustics and touch, which can be altered by simply manipulating a few of these key elements.

  • Garden Installation: This involves the creation of garden beds, selection of plants suited to the regional climate and soil conditions, and the layout that accommodates growth and maintenance. Gardens can range from simple flower beds to complex arrangements including various plant species.
  • Turf Installation: Turf provides a lush, green carpet of grass which can be natural or artificial. Installation includes ground preparation, laying sod, or seeding and, when it comes to artificial turf, securing it properly.
  • Soil and Mulch: Soil is foundational for plant growth and health. Different plants may require different types of soil amendments to thrive. Mulch is used to retain moisture in the soil, reduce weed growth, and provide a clean and finished appearance to garden beds.
  • Plants: A diverse range of plant species adds life and beauty to the landscape. Plants may include annuals and perennials, shrubs, grasses, and groundcovers, selected based on the conditions of the site and the desired aesthetic.
  • Trees: Trees are vital elements of Softscape, adding structure, shade, and habitat within a landscape. They require careful selection and placement due to their size and root systems.

By bringing together these Softscape elements, homeowners and landscape designers can create a vibrant, living tapestry that enhances both the beauty and the environmental quality of an outdoor space.

Services that make up Softscape Installation:

Soils and growing medium serve as the foundation from which your living landscapes thrive, an essential component in the effective growth of grasses, plants and trees; all of which require unique ratios of aggregates, sand and organics to produce ideal growing conditions.

Soils

Soils and growing medium serve as the foundation from which your living landscapes thrive, an essential component in the effective growth of grasses, plants and trees; all of which require unique ratios of aggregates, sand and organics to produce ideal growing conditions.
Soils and growing medium serve as the foundation from which your living landscapes thrive, an essential component in the effective growth of grasses, plants and trees; all of which require unique ratios of aggregates, sand and organics to produce ideal growing conditions.

Soils

Soils and growing medium serve as the foundation from which your living landscapes thrive, an essential component in the effective growth of grasses, plants and trees; all of which require unique ratios of aggregates, sand and organics to produce ideal growing conditions.
As an added layer of protection to the root structures of plant and trees, natural and composted mulches reduce the requirements for weeding and cultivating soils due to its high acidity also aiding in the retention of water during dryer months.

Mulch

As an added layer of protection to the root structures of plant and trees, natural and composted mulches reduce the requirements for weeding and cultivating soils due to its high acidity also aiding in the retention of water during dryer months.
As an added layer of protection to the root structures of plant and trees, natural and composted mulches reduce the requirements for weeding and cultivating soils due to its high acidity also aiding in the retention of water during dryer months.

Mulch

As an added layer of protection to the root structures of plant and trees, natural and composted mulches reduce the requirements for weeding and cultivating soils due to its high acidity also aiding in the retention of water during dryer months.
Foliage or floral annuals serve as a seasonal source of color and texture, adding elegance and excitement to surrounding garden beds, planters and entrance ways. Lasting only a few months, annuals can be planted several times a year bringing life to your garden as the seasons change.

Annuals

Foliage or floral annuals serve as a seasonal source of color and texture, adding elegance and excitement to surrounding garden beds, planters and entrance ways. Lasting only a few months, annuals can be planted several times a year bringing life to your garden as the seasons change.
Foliage or floral annuals serve as a seasonal source of color and texture, adding elegance and excitement to surrounding garden beds, planters and entrance ways. Lasting only a few months, annuals can be planted several times a year bringing life to your garden as the seasons change.

Annuals

Foliage or floral annuals serve as a seasonal source of color and texture, adding elegance and excitement to surrounding garden beds, planters and entrance ways. Lasting only a few months, annuals can be planted several times a year bringing life to your garden as the seasons change.
Let our inventive team of Horticulturalists create a color and texture palette perfect for your custom pots or planters, adding in seasonal favorites that can proudly be displayed at your home’s entrance, around a swimming pool or exhibited on patios and balconies.

Custom Plantings

Let our inventive team of Horticulturalists create a color and texture palette perfect for your custom pots or planters, adding in seasonal favorites that can proudly be displayed at your home’s entrance, around a swimming pool or exhibited on patios and balconies.
Let our inventive team of Horticulturalists create a color and texture palette perfect for your custom pots or planters, adding in seasonal favorites that can proudly be displayed at your home’s entrance, around a swimming pool or exhibited on patios and balconies.

Custom Plantings

Let our inventive team of Horticulturalists create a color and texture palette perfect for your custom pots or planters, adding in seasonal favorites that can proudly be displayed at your home’s entrance, around a swimming pool or exhibited on patios and balconies.
Pruning and shaping is an essential part of maintenance on hedges. Not only to establish aesthetic form and strength but to promote growth from within, encouraging nutrients to feed the existing branch structure rather than push growth outwards.

Hedge Pruning

Pruning and shaping is an essential part of maintenance on hedges. Not only to establish aesthetic form and strength but to promote growth from within, encouraging nutrients to feed the existing branch structure rather than push growth outwards.
Pruning and shaping is an essential part of maintenance on hedges. Not only to establish aesthetic form and strength but to promote growth from within, encouraging nutrients to feed the existing branch structure rather than push growth outwards.

Hedge Pruning

Pruning and shaping is an essential part of maintenance on hedges. Not only to establish aesthetic form and strength but to promote growth from within, encouraging nutrients to feed the existing branch structure rather than push growth outwards.
A successful tree pruning should leave a specimen looking translucent with a visible branch structure that encourages air flow and unrestricted foliage growth. Inadequate pruning can result in a drawn-out recovery process or even shock and potential mortality of the specimen.

Tree Pruning

A successful tree pruning should leave a specimen looking translucent with a visible branch structure that encourages air flow and unrestricted foliage growth. Inadequate pruning can result in a drawn-out recovery process or even shock and potential mortality of the specimen.
A successful tree pruning should leave a specimen looking translucent with a visible branch structure that encourages air flow and unrestricted foliage growth. Inadequate pruning can result in a drawn-out recovery process or even shock and potential mortality of the specimen.

Tree Pruning

A successful tree pruning should leave a specimen looking translucent with a visible branch structure that encourages air flow and unrestricted foliage growth. Inadequate pruning can result in a drawn-out recovery process or even shock and potential mortality of the specimen.

Hardscape Elements

Hardscape elements are the framework from which the rest of your landscape is constructed providing form and structure for any outdoor space or landscape. Hardscape refers to the solid, hard elements in landscape design that remain constant as they are not living. These features may include structures and installations usually made from natural or man-made materials.

Hardscape Features

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Driveways

Concrete or asphalt, permeable or impermeable, paving stones or large format slabs, your driveway is the gateway to your home and what draws in interest into the rest of your landscape. Multi-functional driveways are becoming increasingly popular as they offer a secondary space for a play area or sport court.

Pathways

A network of concrete, paving stone or flagstone paths moving you through a landscape can be used as a powerful tool in space creation, linking different functions and experiences while speeding up or slowing down the pace at which they are perceived.

photos by Myshsale
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Retaining Walls

Built for aesthetics as well as necessity, retaining walls can serve as prominent features within a landscape. Natural materials such a timber and stone can leave a space feeling natural and organic while manufactured materials such as architectural concrete and segmental wall stones provide a more modern aesthetic with clever lines and bold structure.

Hardscape is an essential aspect of landscape design, providing structure and defining the living spaces outdoors. It can dramatically alter the appearance of a landscape and offer practical solutions to soil erosion and water management.

The art of landscaping lies in the perfect balance between Softscape and Hardscape. A harmonious landscape design incorporates both elements to create a cohesive, sustainable, and visually appealing outdoor space. With careful planning and consideration of how these elements interact, a landscape can be transformed into a beautiful and functional extension of the home.

Hardscape Elements

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Concrete

Often used for its durability and versatility, concrete can be a component of many hardscape features, including pavers for paths, driveways, and foundations for other structures such as retaining walls.

Natural Stone

Natural or shaped stones are used to create sturdy and aesthetically pleasing surfaces for walking or driving. Natural Stone can also be used for steps and retaining walls

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