• julia0117

Landscaper or Landscape Designer?

Updated: Apr 21, 2018

So, you have decided to embark on the journey of investing in your outdoor space. You’re excited and eager, possibly a little anxious and uncertain where to start. Do you need a Landscape Designer? What do they actually do? Or should I work with a landscaper?

As a Landscape Designer, these are questions we are asked all the time. So, let’s start with the basics, what is a Landscape Designer.


While an Architect plans and designs buildings, a Landscape Designer plans and designs outdoor spaces. They are the link between the indoors and the outdoors. For this reason, they quite often work closely with Architects during the initial design phase.

Upon completion of the plans, an Architect will engage in a builder to construct their design while a Landscape Designer will work with a landscaper to construct their garden design. Landscape Designers are working with living things, this means they have excellent plant knowledge and can often double as horticulturists.

Some of the issues a Landscape Designer would address on site:

  • Steep slopes

  • Retaining walls

  • Irrigation and drainage systems

  • Designing outdoor structures

  • Pools

  • Solving elevation problems

  • Designing or giving advice on where to place service lines, entries, driveways and parking areas



If you have gone through a build before, you will already know, working from a plan is always better. It allows for accurate quoting and a clear guide for all parties involved. When considering a new garden, big or small, the same rule applies. If engaging in a Landscape Designer to plan your outdoor space and garden, a plan ensures the landscapers can quote accurately on the project.


Depending on the scope of the job, you might be required to engage in a Landscape Designer. This could be due to Council requirements. If this is the case, a Landscape Designer will have experience and knowledge of the restrictions and regulations, allowing the process to run smoother.


Landscape Designers will specify the right plants for the right location, saving you on costly mistakes. Because let’s face it, plants are expensive. They have access to quality suppliers that grow stock which wouldn’t necessarily be available to the public.


As a rule of thumb, if you are considering any major structural changes to your outdoor space, then yes, you will require a Landscape Designer. This means, pools, cabana’s, decking, retaining walls, that sort of thing. Should you have any problem areas on site that need addressing, such as irrigation, then this would be another reason to engage in the services of a Landscape Designer. However, if you are looking at “some paving, garden beds and steppers,” and you really know what you want, then a landscaper is what you are after. The Master Landscapers Association is a great place to search for some qualified landscapers near you.

If you are still uncertain, please feel free to contact us, sticks & stones would be happy to discuss your project.

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