- Features of landscape design
- Types and approximate cost of landscape design work
- Landscape design
- Site preparation
- Walkways, gazebos, retaining walls and lanterns
A quietly murmuring stream, framed by picturesque boulders, lush flower beds blooming from early spring to severe frosts, slender pines and apple trees that bring an excellent harvest, an alpine slide and a small Japanese garden, statues and gazebos – and all this on their own local area! Isn’t this a homeowner’s dream?
Estela Robles. Gardener
But not all residents of private houses and owners of summer cottages, especially those who have sufficiently large capitals, now want to dig into the ground with their own hands. But the land plot simply needs to be ennobled, so that it would not be a shame to receive guests, and it is pleasant to see for ourselves. That is why, due to the growing demand for such services, such a rather new profession for our country as a landscape designer is becoming more and more popular and in demand..
Features of landscape design
The creation of picturesque compositions from plants, stones, decorative elements and sculptures arose several thousand years ago. Landscaping can rightfully be called a descendant of landscape gardening art. These two concepts have a lot in common, they work with the same elements: trees, shrubs, stone, sculptures and decorative elements. Today, more and more gardening art is perceived as just one of the types of landscape design work.
There are common points of contact in landscape design and with concepts such as gardening and horticulture. But the latter have an agricultural focus and work only with useful plants, and for landscape design, the external attractiveness of the plant and its ability to decorate the landscape are of much greater importance..
Landscape design can be called a universal discipline, divided into theory – the creation of landscaping projects, and practice – the embodiment of the designer’s projects in life, that is, a number of works with plants, earth and other natural and man-made elements.
An important difference between landscape design and gardening art is that its main goal is to connect residential and commercial buildings with the surrounding landscape. Thus, landscape design smooths out the contrast between the building and nature, helps to create beauty and harmony in the center of the metropolis, and makes the landscape less urban. If in a park or garden, the presence of a person can practically not be felt, and recreation areas are represented only by rare benches near walking paths, then landscape designers pay great attention to the convenience of the infrastructure of the site, provide for the presence of a gazebo, a picnic area, a playground, a pool, and so on..
In addition, if the garden and park are usually fairly large plots of land, landscape design can be created on a very modest territory, for example, a separate flower bed or slide near the entrance of an ordinary house.
All these differences made it possible to single out landscape design as a separate concept, and over time, a special profession appeared – not just a gardener or gardener, but a landscape designer. And it is not at all surprising that this profession and the concept itself arose only in the twentieth century, having first appeared in such industrial countries as Germany, Great Britain and France, where there was an urgent need to somehow decorate the gray city streets and areas in front of numerous business centers and multi-storey residential complexes.
Types and approximate cost of landscape design work
Today, it is not difficult to find a company that offers all kinds of work to bring a land plot into perfect condition. Any search engine produces thousands of results for the query “landscape design studio in Moscow”.
First, you need to decide which services of a landscape designer are needed. For example, many homeowners order only a plot design project with a possible location of the necessary objects and an indication of the types of plants that will fit optimally into the landscape and harmoniously combine with each other, but they still prefer to implement it independently. Others completely shift worries about the territory onto the shoulders of professionals, however, preferring to save money and not ordering anything too exotic or expensive, rightly believing that they will definitely do without a fountain or a decorative mill. And still others can afford not to count money and want the garden to bloom on their site, and an alpine slide, and water lilies float in the pond.
The first stage of work on the improvement of the territory. A landscape project is not just an approximate plan sketched on a sheet of paper, but a vivid picture created by computer graphics, which conveys all the features of the future landscape, colors of flowering plants and volumetric images of decorative elements.
To create a landscape project, the designer needs to go to the place of future work, evaluate all the features of the relief, surrounding the building site, and so on. Drafting a project includes:
- planimetric or geodetic survey of the territory. The first one is used for flat areas with a simple relief, but land plots with a large height difference and the need to create a drainage system require geodetic surveying;
- inventory of all existing plantings. So, it is not at all necessary to uproot a huge maple growing near the terrace, the designer will simply indicate it as an integral part of the project and will try to beat it in creating a single picture. During the inventory, all buildings on the site are also indicated: a dwelling house, outbuildings, a garage, a veranda, a gazebo;
- determination of the composition of the soil, the direction of the flow of storm water and so on;
- clarification of the wishes of the owner. Before drawing up a project, the designer must ask the owner of the site what will be located here in the future. For example, a family with children would like to equip an area with a swing and a sandpit, perhaps a swimming pool or even a golf course and tennis court.
Only after collecting all this information, the landscape designer begins to create a project. Experts advise to order a plan for the arrangement of the territory in winter, so that with the beginning of warm days you can start implementing the plan.
The cost of such a project depends on many factors – the size of the plot (usually the price is indicated for one hundred square meters), as well as the individual stages of drawing up a plan and its complexity. For example, for one hundred square meters on a small plot of land, up to 10 acres, a Moscow landscape studio will take 2 thousand rubles, for one hundred square meters of drawing up a project for a larger plot of land – from 1.2 thousand rubles.
Some landscape design studios make changes to the finished project at the request of the owner for free, others may require an additional fee, citing the fact that it was necessary to inform about their requirements in advance.
You will have to pay separately for such nuances as sketches of the so-called small architectural forms, that is, arbors and grottoes, for example. This pleasure will cost about 1.6 thousand rubles for one sketch of one object. You will also have to pay additionally for the project of the irrigation and drainage system – about 500 rubles, the lighting scheme – about 300 rubles, as well as for the visualization of the project using a special computer program and the printout of each photo – about 5 thousand rubles.
It is easy to calculate that a design project for arranging an average plot of 6 acres with one gazebo, several lanterns and an irrigation system will have to pay from 19.4 thousand rubles, taking into account the creation of a three-dimensional picture and printouts of images. It should be borne in mind that some Moscow landscape design studios increase the price for work outside the Moscow Ring Road.
Preparatory work begins immediately after the approval of the project with the customer and includes the removal of construction waste, the clearing of the territory, the felling of dry and old trees that did not fit into the project, the cleaning of shrubs of unknown origin, leveling the soil and other land work.
The cost of these services is also calculated separately, per one square meter or one hundred square meters of land.
It is interesting that the range of prices is quite large. Some landscape design studios set a separate price for each type of work, for example – “Removal of construction waste” – 1 thousand rubles per cubic meter of waste, regardless of the area of the site and excluding the cost of freight transport. Others indicate the price for one square meter: weed harvesting – 100 rubles per “square”, uprooting one stump – 500 rubles, moving fertile soil – 700 rubles per cubic meter, and so on..
In general, if there was not so much garbage on the site and special efforts were not required, then preparing the site for landscaping and ennobling is the most inexpensive part of creating landscape design.
This essential part of creating an attractive green landscape on site will cost customers a very substantial amount, depending on the plants chosen. Almost all design studios offer the attention of potential customers extensive price lists on several sheets, where it is detailed how much it costs to plant one plant of this type. Moreover, the price also depends on the height of the plant. For example, planting an ordinary pine 2-3 meters high – 10 thousand rubles (including the cost of the pine itself, of course), and a pine 4-5 meters high – already 22 thousand rubles.
Other landscape studios simply say – the price of the work is equal to 30% of the cost of the plant itself, so consider yourself.
There are also companies that indicate a specific price for work, regardless of the type of plant. For example: to plant a tree up to 2 meters high – 1.1 thousand rubles, a shrub – 450 rubles, a coniferous tree – 1.4 thousand rubles, and so on.
One square meter of an ordinary lawn costs from 150 to 350 rubles, the price includes leveling of fertile soil, tillage with a cultivator, planting seeds, watering and the first mowing. Moreover, some companies charge an additional fee for working with a lawn mower..
A garden and park lawn will cost a little more – up to 450 rubles per “square”. Ready “rolled” lawn – up to 650 rubles per square meter. Additional costs – fertilization and purchase of black soil.
Arrangement of an ordinary flower garden with annual plants costs on average about 2 thousand rubles per “square”, with perennial plants – up to 3.2 thousand rubles per square meter, including the price of the flowers themselves.
The device of a rose garden and rockery (rocky garden) will cost more – 4.8 and 5.5 thousand rubles per square meter, respectively. An even higher price is for an alpine slide – a popular element of landscape design. One square meter of rock garden, excluding the cost of selected plants, costs from 6 to 7 thousand rubles.
A private pond on the site is not a cheap pleasure. The average price of a pond, including land work, laying film and decorating with a stone – from 6.5 to 7.5 thousand rubles per square meter, excluding the cost of removing land, pond equipment, fish and aquatic plants.
If finances permit, you can arrange a waterfall, a stream, and a real, albeit not too long, river on the site. Such works are even more expensive than the construction of an ordinary pond – from 8 to 10 thousand rubles per “square”. Additional expenses – creation of a coastline from decorative stone, installation of sculptures, arrangement of grottoes.
The cost of a reservoir created on a concrete base, and not on a film, increases by at least 2-3 thousand rubles per square meter.
Walkways, gazebos, retaining walls and lanterns
In order for the landscape design to acquire a complete look and be not only beautiful, but also functional, paths for walking, and a gazebo for dining in the fresh air, and competent lighting are absolutely necessary.
On average, an ordinary retaining wall for plants, made of limestone and having a height of 50 centimeters, will cost the customer 1.3 thousand rubles per running meter. The same wall, but already faced with artificial stone will cost about 3 thousand rubles per running meter, and a wall made of natural stone – about 4 thousand.
The price of the device depends on the type of laying – one square meter of the track laid on a sandy base costs from 900 rubles, for a dry mixture – from 1.2 thousand rubles, on a concrete base – from 1.5 thousand rubles. Additional costs: curbstone laying – from 450 rubles per linear meter.
On average, the installation of one lamp costs about 1 thousand rubles and may vary depending on the type of lamp. Some landscape design studios immediately indicate the price for the entire lighting system of the territory according to the project, including cable laying, others – for each running meter of installation – about 150 rubles.
The gazebo can be bought ready-made or built on the spot, in any case, it is necessary to prepare a place for its installation and build a foundation – solid reinforced concrete supports, piles or a strip foundation. The assortment of arbors is very large – from simple square structures made of light timber to small chambers, varnished and decorated with openwork gratings. Accordingly, the cost of the finished garden house also changes – from 12 to 200 thousand rubles. And the price of a finished glazed pavilion can reach 400 and 500 thousand rubles.
As you can see, to improve the territory by resorting to the services of specialists in landscape design is quite an expensive pleasure. But there are still costs ahead for maintaining all this beauty in proper form: watering, weeding, pruning trees and preparing them for winter. And a palm tree planted in the suburbs may dry up, in the end.
Of course, it is much cheaper to set up a garden on your own by buying the trees you like, plant flowers traditional for our climate, a couple of beds with useful greens, and the grass will grow by itself – than not a lawn!
However, if finances allow, you must agree, it is very nice to feel like the owner of a real Japanese or English garden, and sitting in a shady gazebo listen to the murmur of a stream or waterfall, admiring the bright colors of a multicolored alpine slide and inhaling the aroma of conifers and lush roses.