hardscape design ideas

Landscape & Hardscape – Quality Landscaping Services

Patios, walkways, sitting walls, retaining walls, water features, fire pits, landscape lighting, grill surrounds and pergolas are all considered hardscape. Hardscapes are the non-living parts of your landscape that provide a pleasant contrast to plant material.

Lines create form in a plan view and delineate both plant beds and hardscape areas. Fine texture exaggerates distance and creates a more open space, while rough texture minimizes distance to make a space feel smaller.

Retaining Walls

Although retaining walls may look like simple stacked stone or block, they are carefully engineered systems that wage an ongoing battle with gravity to prevent erosion. They keep soil in place where it would otherwise slip down a steep slope, potentially damaging foundations and landscape elements.

They are also an essential part of creating sunken patios, walkout basements and other hardscapes that involve abrupt changes in ground elevation. Retaining walls are especially useful in terracing hills to increase usable yard space by turning them into flat terraces where you can grow gardens or install features, such as walkways and patios.

There are many different types of retaining walls, each with their own unique benefits. For instance, a wood retaining wall is an attractive option because it uses natural materials that blend with the environment and requires no chemicals to maintain. Its disadvantage, however, is that it can’t rise as high as other wall types.

Another popular type of retaining wall is a concrete block wall, which offers a wide range of design options and can rise much higher than a wooden retaining wall. Its main disadvantage is that it can be quite costly and requires a lot of skill to build properly. Whatever material you choose, a good contractor will work with you to ensure that your retaining wall is well-designed and built for its intended purpose.

Water Features

A water feature can be a beautiful focal point in any hardscape design. They add a sense of movement and create visual interest for those visiting your business. The sound of moving water is relaxing and can also stimulate the mind. Water features can also attract wildlife and promote biodiversity in your landscape.

A fountain is one of the most popular water features for both residential and commercial properties. They are easy to maintain and can be designed in a variety of styles. However, they are not a good choice for spaces that may need to be used by young children or animals as they can be a drowning hazard. They also need to be regularly cleaned as algae will accumulate unless chemicals are added.

For those that are looking for a more traditional water feature, a pond or a waterfall can add a touch of elegance to any space. These can be a great addition to a garden or a backyard patio.

The key to a successful water feature is in the planning. It needs to fit into the landscape design and be sized correctly to ensure safety.


Patios are the heart of a hardscape design and provide space for relaxing, cooking and entertaining. They also offer a way to define spaces, reduce the amount of grass needed for watering and control traffic flow in the yard. They can be made from a variety of materials, such as bricks, pavers and concrete. These materials also can be stained, painted or stamped to add a custom touch.

Garden benches are another hardscape element that can enhance the look of a home’s landscaping and create more seating options in a yard. They can be made of a wide range of materials to fit any budget and style.

Using hardscapes like retaining walls and walkways can improve your landscape’s drainage. This will keep your yard from flooding or being deprived of water and will help the plants around it stay healthy.

When choosing a hardscape design, make sure to consider how it will affect your property line. If you build a project that extends into your neighbor’s yard, it can cause a problem down the line if you are not careful.

Another important consideration when choosing a hardscape is to avoid too many straight lines. This can make the overall look feel artificial and out of place. Try adding curves and rounded edges to your designs to create a more natural, inviting look.

Fire Pits

Fire has been a central part of human gatherings for thousands of years, and it’s a perfect way to bring people together. Whether you’re celebrating graduations or just enjoying time with the family, a fire pit is sure to create an inviting environment for everyone to enjoy.

When building a fire pit it is important to consider the size and style of the seating area as well as its surroundings. This will influence how you build the pit itself. Generally, it is best to keep the fire pit raised at least a foot or so off the ground to reduce the chance of it going out of control. This will also help to protect the surrounding landscaping and make it easy to keep clean.

Mike likes to pair a raised fire pit with natural stone walls that he constructs on-site. This gives the space a textured look that complements the stone used for the seating area and surrounding landscape. He also likes to use a plant palette that complements the fire pit. In this example, he pairs Bird of Paradise plants with Senecio decaryii (a shrub that turns green when it isn’t in full sun).

The key to good hardscape design is using various types of materials so the space doesn’t feel one-note. Depending on the desired aesthetic, you can create a rustic or modern design with the right choices.