Landscaping is an umbrella term for Softscaping and Hardscaping. These are two complimentary practices: both have to do with ornamental improvements, but are in fact quite distinct. Let’s go through a quick glossary of all the terms involved:
Landscape, as we said, is the general word encompassing softscape and hardscape. It’s the process of designing, re-arranging and maintaining green areas (private gardens, parks, lands etc.) by altering their natural features, in order to make it look more pleasant and enjoyable.
The Softscape is the “soft” or “organic” part of a landscape. Therefore, anything that grows: grass, trees, flowers, bushes, succulents etc. It needs regular maintenance and care, much more often than hardscape possibly could.
Grass can overgrow, develop lawn diseases, trees and bushes need pruning and trimming, flower beds need maintenance. As anything living, softscape grows, dies, develops diseases and needs recovery. Softscaping takes care of all that, as well as maintaining it. It may sound like a fancy term, but it’s mostly referred to as lawn mowing, yard maintenance, gardening, tree services etc.
Once we have described what Softscape is, you can probably imagine what Hardscape can be. It’s every “hard”, non living element in your yard or green area. Rocks, gravel, but also fences, concrete paths, tiles, retaining walls, stone fire pits.
Wood and timber are considered “former living material”. They are now also part of the hardscape: boardwalks, fences, pond bridges, patios, benches, etc. Hardscape also needs maintenance, but mostly needs deep cleaning which is done through pressure washing every once in a while. We recommend it once every six months.
The perfect Landscaping:
In order to achieve the perfect Landscape, both Softscape and Hardscape have to be designed to obtain the perfect balance. This is why landscaping is also referred to as “landscape architecture” : the arrangement and design of your green areas requires just as much effort put into as your home would. A garden, a backyard or a public park are environments designed around human life. And as such, they must be carefully designed, created and maintained.
We’ll get into landscape design principles soon: make sure to follow us to notice when new articles are published.