In tune with, and reflecting of, the natural surroundings, Coastal-style landscapes typically feature native, swaying grasses, small colorful shrubs, evergreen hedges, succulents, colorful pots, and sea life representations, such as shells or starfish.
Often applied in limited space such as apartment and condo patios but serves micro-spaces well on a large property.
Any assortment and arrangement of pots and planters may be artistically installed with edible and other plants capable of confinement.
As opposed to similar styles such as Southwestern and Xeriscape, Desert landscaping is more minimalistic — usually confined to native plants such as cacti, agave, yucca, and ocotillo, as well as locally sourced materials such as deco rock, boulders, and decomposed granite.
Somewhere between traditional landscaping and farming lies Edible landscaping — or “foodscaping,” as it’s sometimes called.
Simply put, it means adding attractive vegetable and herb plants such as broccoli, kale, lettuce, basil, cilantro, etc. to an otherwise ornamental landscape.
Japanese gardens define the concept of “The garden as art.” Notable for unusual (to Westerners) features such as stone lanterns, koi ponds, and water plants, Japanese gardens are meticulously plotted, with plants and materials chosen for spiritual, as well as functional, values.
The key appeal in Mediterranean landscaping is in the way it threads the needle of informal elegance.
Familiar plants include evergreen trees such as pine, yew, and olive trees; attractive yet hardy shrubs such as lavender, rosemary, and sage; and seasonal color.
Modern landscape design is stringent and geometrical, with sharply delineated areas squared off and bordered with sharp, clean edges.
Color palettes are usually muted and reserved. Plant material is likely duplicated, limited to very well-defined, slow-growing foliage, except for the occasional accent or shade tree. LED lighting to induce color at night and fire and water are often infused for entertainment.
This style refers to the use of large boulders as walls, borders, and natural ornamental entities. Slope outcroppings might also serve as levelled planter spots, steps or erosion control.
Similar to Desert, but with an emphasis more on beauty than on native plants and low maintenance, Southwestern landscapes can be elaborate and colorful, yet appear in harmony with their surroundings.
A skillful mix of native and drought-tolerant non-natives, plus the presence of desert tones such as reds, browns, oranges and yellows, are key.
Courtyards, archways, fountains, and colorful tiles are some of the hardscapes associated with Spanish landscaping.
With Spain’s hot, dry climate being similar to Southern California, attractive heat-loving plants are essential.
This term refers to generally elaborate landscapes containing many familiar elements of American landscapes — turf grass, evergreen hedges, flower beds, mature trees. Seating areas beneath patio covers, pergolas, gazebos, and arbors are often incorporated.
Water! That’s one element you’ll be sure to find in a Tropical landscape. Another element is plant material such as palms, banana trees (or high desert subs,) and flowering plants with vividly colored foliage.
Don’t forget a shade structure — preferably with thatched roof and wisecracking parrot.
Similar to Mediterranean, Tuscan landscaping varies in its preference for warm earth tones, rather than the bold hues of Mediterranean.
Aged grape vines, sunset colored decomposed granite, Italian Cypress, Olive trees and cobble add to the welcoming effect of a Tuscan yard.
A growing favorite in the arid Southwest, Xeriscape simply means low-water landscaping.
While typically overlapping with elements of the Desert and Southwest styles, Xeriscape can be arid, lush looking, or somewhere in between — as long as the plants use very little water. Hardscape materials should be permeable.