9 Types Of Landscaping Styles to Consider (2023)

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When thinking of ways to upgrade your home, you might consider a kitchen remodel or a bathroom renovation. But why not think outside the box and focus on landscaping?

Landscaping has a huge impact on the overall look and feel of your home (and it can improve resale value, too). The landscaping style you choose should allow your yard to be a place where you can go to relax and decompress from the rest of the world.

When choosing a type of landscaping design, keep in mind your ultimate goals, such as designing your yard for children, sustainability, entertaining or relaxation. Be aware of any zoning laws in your neighborhood that may prohibit certain types or sizes of structures and of your climate; not every style of landscaping is conducive to all types of weather.

Here are nine types of landscaping styles you can consider for your home.

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1. Tropical

9 Types Of Landscaping Styles to Consider (1)Getty

You don’t have to fly to a remote island to experience tropical vibes. You can recreate them for your own backyard landscaping project with lush greenery and bold colors. If your climate suports it, palm trees, birds of paradise, hibiscus flowers, bougainvillea, orchids and jasmine are all representative of a tropical getaway.

There are also tropical touches you can add in any growing zone. A hammock swaying in the breeze, a swimming pool or hot tub—with a waterfall to really level up—tiki statues and torches, bamboo accents, a fire pit and brightly colored outdoor furniture are functional even in less-than-tropical climates. Making a signature cocktail at a backyard tiki bar is optional.

2. Woodland

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If your idea of an ideal getaway is a cozy cabin in the woods, consider a woodland landscaping style. This type of landscape design is an excellent choice for a low-maintenance option; forest trees, shrubs and florals can be left to grow in their own time with little human interference.

Hardwood trees (like oak, maple, hickory, walnut and cherry) are traditional choices but do take longer to grow and are a long-term investment. These trees also go dormant in the winter, so consider what the landscape will look like in all seasons. Softwoods (including cedar, Douglas fir, juniper, pine, redwood, spruce and yew) grow more quickly and retain their coverage during the winter.

In terms of structural additions, stone pathways, wooden benches and decorative or functional birdhouses help create a woodland feel.

3. Prairie

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If tall trees aren’t your style, consider recreating a prairie landscape with tall grasses and herbaceous flowering plants. Switchgrass, which is native to the plains in the southwest U.S., has greens, browns and even a little purple or red.

It has evolved to many environments, from cold to warm and shallow to deep soil, so it can be adaptable to most climates. Switchgrass is also drought-resistant, so it’s a good option if you live in an area that doesn’t get a lot of rain. It can also be a less expensive option than trees or shrubbery.

4. Desert

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A desert style landscape doesn’t mean a drab one. Desert landscaping can be a low maintenance option that requires little upkeep and water. Succulents are of course a must; cacti, aloe and yucca are traditional desert additions. To add color, consider desert-tolerant plants like begonia, autumn sage and yellow columbine—certain types of succulent can offer color, too.

Regarding decor, consider Southwest-style design and heat-resistant furniture in light colors (no one wants to sear their skin on hot metal or a black cushion). A fire pit evokes the drama of the desert, and an outdoor kitchen could allow you to make the most of the warm days outdoors. And don’t forget to offer shade: umbrellas, gazebos or desert-friendly trees are a must.

5. English Garden

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English garden, also known as English cottage or English countryside is a popular landscape style that evokes stories about summering at your grandmother’s in Kent, which is nicknamed the “Garden of England.” It was the English garden style of landscaping that actually helped people view nature as something to be appreciated and valued rather than feared.

Alongside florals, shrubbery and trees, a body of water is a common English garden feature. Whether manmade or natural, this could be a lake at large scale, or a pond or reflecting pool on the smaller end. A bridge, a bench and a birdbath are classic accompaniments, along with sculptures and a cobblestone path.

6. Japanese Garden

9 Types Of Landscaping Styles to Consider (6)Getty

A space for peaceful contemplation is the aim of a traditional Japanese garden. Drawing on Buddhist, Shinto and Taoist philosophies to provide a spiritual haven, this landscape style has four essential elements: rocks, water, plants and ornaments. When incorporating these features, the design principles of asymmetry, enclosure, borrowed scenery, balance and symbolism should be kept in mind.

Koi ponds, waterfalls and stone basins are common water features for a Japanese garden; incorporating a bridge is also common. Traditional Japanese gardens are enclosed, all for a better way to escape into peaceful contemplation, and bamboo is an excellent choice for this. Decorative ornaments are also a key to bringing this landscape style to life.

7. Tuscan

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You don’t need 300 acres to recreate your own slice of the Medici gardens in Tuscany, Italy. You can emulate these famous gardens and others in Italy with a Tuscan style of landscaping. The region is known for its rolling hills, verdant vineyards and fragrant olive trees. Even without these exact components, you can achieve a Tuscan look and feel.

Citrus plants and potted herbs can help your garden look—and smell—like a Tuscan landscape. If you have the space, a labyrinth of sorts can give guests (even if it’s just kids) a place to roam. Growing your own herbs or vegetables is a symbol of Tuscany’s connection to the earth. And an arbor or pergola is the perfect structure to sit and observe your masterpiece.


8. French

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French gardens originally got their inspiration from Italian Renaissance style, but they added elements of their own. The Gardens of Versailles are the biggest example of this landscaping style; they’re even larger than the aforementioned Medici gardens—nearly a whopping 2,000 acres. Thankfully, a French style can be replicated on a much smaller scale.

Even though landscaping is about your yard, the residence is typically the focal point of a French garden. Planting trees or shrubs in straight lines that lead to the home are one way to draw the eye back to the house. Trellises, columns, birdbaths or fountains and cast iron furniture are signs of French design. And remember that with this style, symmetry is key.

9. Spanish

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Spanish style landscaping is popular in areas of similar climate, hot and dry. Influenced by Islamic, Persian and Moorish gardens but with a flair of its own, this type of design is typically tolerant of drought, meaning that grass is not a central or necessary element.

Most structural elements of Spanish landscape design include ceramic: it can be found in benches, reflecting pools, walls, walkways, decorative touches and fountains. In terms of fountains, the Spanish style is not one large centerpiece but multiple smaller pieces. Terracotta pots, urns and bright blue glazed accent decor are also authentic touches.

Bottom Line

No matter which landscaping style spoke to you, make sure you’re considering the best style for your property. Consider factors like climate, weather, personal preferences and maintenance level before settling on your finalized style. If you are looking for more landscaping ideas and must-knows, our resident general contractor has some great tips.

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9 Types Of Landscaping Styles to Consider? ›

9 Types Of Landscaping Styles to Consider
  • Tropical. Getty. You don't have to fly to a remote island to experience tropical vibes. ...
  • Woodland. Getty. ...
  • Prairie. Getty. ...
  • Desert. Getty. ...
  • English Garden. Getty. ...
  • 6. Japanese Garden. Getty. ...
  • Tuscan. Getty. ...
  • French. Getty.
Mar 17, 2022

What are different types of landscape? ›

List of different types of landscape. Desert, Plain, Taiga, Tundra, Wetland, Mountain, Mountain range, Cliff, Coast, Littoral zone, Glacier, Polar regions of Earth, Shrubland, Forest, Rainforest, Woodland, Jungle, Moors, Steppe, Valley.

What are the three types of landscapes? ›

Basically, landscapes can be classified in the forms of landscape gardens, wilderness, and farmlands.

What is style and types of garden? ›

3 Basic Styles Of Gardening: Formal Garden, Informal Garden & Wild Garden.

What is an example of a landscape? ›

A natural landscape is made up of a collection of landforms, such as mountains, hills, plains, and plateaus. Lakes, streams, soils (such as sand or clay), and natural vegetation are other features of natural landscapes. A desert landscape, for instance, usually indicates sandy soil and few deciduous trees.

What are the 6 landscapes? ›

There are many different types of landscapes, including but not limited to: coastal landscapes • riverine landscapes • arid landscapes • mountain landscapes • karst landscapes. levee, and a flood plain or terrace.

How do I choose a landscape design? ›

How to Pick a Landscape Designer Who Can Give You the Yard of Your Dreams
  1. Talk to Friends and Neighbors. ...
  2. Check Memberships. ...
  3. Ask About Experience. ...
  4. Look at Their Work. ...
  5. Request a Job Site Visit. ...
  6. Read the Contract.
Apr 23, 2019

What are the 4 different types of landscapes? ›

There are different types of landscape:
  • Mountain landscapes. We can see mountains, with narrow rivers, forests, villages and steep roads.
  • Flat landscapes. We can see flat land, wide rivers, farms, cities and motorways.
  • Coastal landscapes. We can see cliffs, the sea and tourist towns.

What are the 4 landscapes? ›

Mountains, hills, plateaus, and plains are the four major types of landforms.

What are the types of landscape garden? ›

Types of Gardens
  • Butterfly Gardens. Plant flowers that butterflies will love.
  • Container Gardening. If space is limited, grow plants in containers.
  • Demonstration Gardens. These Extension gardens showcase local plants and sustainable gardening techniques.
  • Fruits, Vegetables & Herbs. ...
  • Organic Gardening. ...
  • Water Gardens.
Sep 15, 2021

What is formal landscape? ›

Formal landscapes are usually a defined space, separate from the rest of a landscape, so they can be implemented in any type of garden without changing the feel of the overall design and giving the area a formal garden look.

What are the 4 different types of landscapes? ›

There are different types of landscape:
  • Mountain landscapes. We can see mountains, with narrow rivers, forests, villages and steep roads.
  • Flat landscapes. We can see flat land, wide rivers, farms, cities and motorways.
  • Coastal landscapes. We can see cliffs, the sea and tourist towns.

What are the 4 landscapes? ›

Mountains, hills, plateaus, and plains are the four major types of landforms.

What are the five types of landscape? ›

Five landscape types were initially identified: agrarian, salt marshes, woods, fishing lagoons and rivers (Figure 2).

What are the two types of landscaping? ›

Types of landscaping: Institutional, private property, industrial, parks and recreational area landscaping. Elements of landscaping: colour, texture, form, etc. Principles of landscape design, selection criteria for plants and pavings.


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