The Elements of Landscaping Strategies

Savvy Landscaping Harrisburg PA complements a house, presenting it in its finest light. It also helps block out the hot summer sun and slow the cold winter winds, cutting energy costs.Landscaping

Balance—whether symmetrical or asymmetrical—informs the landscape design. Rhythm—repetition of plant material, hardscaping materials, or other features—adds interest and harmony to the garden.

Using the principles of horticultural science and artistic composition, landscape designers combine plant materials with hardscape features to create attractive and functional outdoor “rooms” for different uses. The element of line, which creates all forms and patterns in a design, is critical to the success of these strategies. The line is also important for establishing site walkability and helping to guide movement throughout the landscape.

Lines can be real (actual) or perceived (implied). Perceived lines are created when a series of objects are organized in such a way as to make it seem as though a line is present. For example, the round form of a shrub that follows a curved bedline gives a landscape a flowing and natural feel, while an upright or columnar plant placed along a linear walk can evoke a sense of rigidity.

The use of line in a landscape is critical to its composition and establishing a rhythm of sight that draws the eye through the scene. It can be the edge of a paving material; the boundary between two different surface materials, such as grass and ivy; or the outline of a three-dimensional form, such as a tree or building. A well-implemented line can pull the viewer into a scene and hold them there by guiding their attention around a corner or through a doorway into a garden room.

Another aspect of line is its ability to create a sense of scale in a landscape. It can be the scale of a tree canopy or the scale of a building against a backdrop of mountains. Scale can be further defined by the use of proportion and the balancing of positive and negative space.

The line is also used to establish a relationship between the site and the surrounding community. The sensitivity of a landscape’s relationship to its neighbors is an important consideration in many municipalities where land-use planning has become more restrictive and formal. This connection can be strengthened through the use of a variety of landscape strategies, such as spatial sequencing and repetition of form. These techniques allow a landscape to be more than just a collection of plantings and hardscape elements; it can be a meaningful place that contributes to the health and welfare of the local community.


Color is arguably the most important element in landscape design. However, it should be used sparingly, like a dash of spice, to add emphasis and contrast rather than overwhelm the other elements of the landscape. Incorporating color into the landscape requires careful consideration and thought, but once it is mastered, the results can be stunning. There are many different kinds of colors, from primary (yellow, red, and blue) to secondary (orange, purple, and green). There are also tertiary colors, which are created by mixing primary colors.

Landscape designers use a variety of color schemes, including monochromatic (using various shades and tints of one color), complementary (two opposite colors on the color wheel, such as blue and orange), and analogous (three adjacent colors on the color wheel, such as red-purple, yellow-orange, and green-blue). These color combinations can be utilized to create contrast in a garden, highlight a focal point, or bring continuity to a landscape.

In addition to color, other elements of landscape design include texture and form. Texture is the feel of an object, such as the rough surface of a stone wall or the coarse bark mulch of a planting bed. Form is the overall shape of a plant or shrub.

A successful landscaping design must balance a number of different factors, such as climate zone, soil type, water availability, maintenance costs, and aesthetics. The key to a successful landscaping design is to first solve the functional needs of the property, such as activity areas and circulation patterns, and then add color as the finishing touch.

Adding color to the landscape is an excellent way to make your outdoor spaces more enjoyable for both you and your guests. It is a great way to increase the value of your home and provide a relaxing place for you and your family to spend time together. With proper consideration and thought, you can create a beautiful and inviting landscape that will impress your friends and neighbors. For more information on landscape design or to schedule a consultation, contact Cider Mill Landscapes. We serve clients in Garnet Valley, Media, Glen Mills, Villanova, Wilmington, and the surrounding areas of Pennsylvania.


The use of lines to develop patterns and create space in the landscape is an important aspect of design. Lines can be straight, curved, or diagonal and can help establish dominance, emphasize focal points, create movement, and add texture. The repetition of lines, forms, colors, and textures is also used to create a sense of rhythm in the landscape. Repetition should be carefully considered, however, as too much repetition can lead to monotony.

The scale of landscape elements is also important. Larger elements can dominate smaller spaces and overwhelm the eye. The scale of a garden should be proportional to the size of the home and any other structures on the property.

Color is also an important consideration. Choosing colors that work together and that transition well is critical to creating a harmonious design. Colors can also have different effects depending on the time of day and the season. Brighter colors are more vibrant, while cool colors recede. The color of a flower or tree can change as it matures, becoming more muted or even disappearing altogether.

Form is an important aspect of landscape design and describes the shape of an object. Curved lines can add a flowing, natural feel to a design and can be useful in creating focal points and drawing attention to water elements. Straight lines, on the other hand, can be used to create a formal or geometric feel and are often used to highlight pathways in a landscape.

The use of contrasting textures in a landscape is another way to create interest and provide balance. Texture can make an object appear larger or smaller, and it can be used to create a sense of movement by defining an edge. The combining of different colors and textures also creates contrast and can be used to emphasize a focal point in a landscape.

Unity in landscape design is the ability of all separate elements to work together to create a coherent and appealing whole. This includes the use of lines, colors, shapes, sizes, textures, and other features that are all used to create a unified design. All aspects of the landscape, including planting beds, hardscapes such as walkways, and special features, should all work together to create a cohesive design that is visually pleasing.

Shrubs and bushes

The term “shrub” is often used to describe a plant that doesn’t grow straight up like a tree but instead has several woody stems. Depending on whom you talk to, these shrubs may or may not die back to the ground in winter (like perennial plants), and they can be deciduous or evergreen. A group of shrubs that form a wall or barrier is often called a hedge. There are many different types of shrubs for landscaping and many garden cultivars that are bred for flowering (like rhododendrons) or leaf color. A natural landscape dominated by shrubs is sometimes referred to as a “shrubland,” “maquis,” “shrub-steppe,” or “shrub swamp.”

Because they come in a range of heights, shrubs are important in most landscape designs as an intermediary between taller trees and shorter perennial or grassy plants. Their varied foliage offers texture, color, and form all year round and can help soften the lines of a house or other structures in the garden.

They can also be planted to create screens and separate private areas, and they can provide garden rooms with boundaries and structure. Unlike herbaceous perennials, shrubs are usually designed to grow with permanence in mind and can add shape to the landscape for years to come.

In general, when choosing shrubs to plant, it’s best to select species that will thrive in your climate zone. Plants that are not suited to your climate can be difficult to maintain and may not survive.

Bushes offer a more subtle touch than shrubs, but they can also be very useful in the landscape for a variety of reasons. Like shrubs, bushes can be deciduous or evergreen and can add a lot of interest to the landscape with a single planting. They can also be planted to provide privacy, or they can be mixed with hedges of varying heights and compositions to create a unique visual interest.

As with shrubs, when choosing bushes for your garden, it’s best to choose species that will thrive in your climate zone and to plant them in groups of odd numbers. This is the way most bushes are found in nature, and this helps give your garden a sense of balance. Also, remember that a landscape overcrowded with extreme varieties will become overwhelming and unnatural-looking.