In any outdoor area, there are various elements that you're going to see. When you talk about a yard or garden, it is not only comprised of trees, shrubs, grasses, and all other varieties of plants, but also of different things. It is not only comprised of living materials but non-living materials as well. On non-living materials, this is where hardscaping comes in.
The living aspects in your garden such as the trees, shrubs, or other plants are part of the softscape elements. Hardscaping, on the other hand, are the non-living aspects of any yard or garden. These elements are also fixed and solid. It is made up of various materials and creates a focal point in your landscaping. Depending on the design, it provides added function in your yard or garden.
Hardscaping are as essential as the plants in your garden. It will not only improve the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor area but it will also add functionality to it. Your hardscaping can serve as an outdoor living space or an area where you can entertain your guests.
Now that you know about hardscaping, you may be confused as to what makes it different from landscaping. A landscape is not complete without the hardscaping and softscaping elements. Hardscaping refers to the more solid structures while softscape refers to the plants and other living materials. These two, when combined, can create harmony in your yard. You can't just have a yard that is full of plants or trees. You can't also have a yard that only has concrete or pathways. Combine those two elements properly and you're going to have a well-designed landscape.
Hardscaping vs. Landscaping
Hardscape elements bring out the appeal and characteristics of a garden your yard. It provides style, shape, and texture. Depending on the style that you want to achieve, you can create a dimensional look in your garden. There are various ways that your hardscape can work together with your landscape. There are also instances when hardscape elements can work separately.
A landscaping expert will help you to create an appealing yard with just the right balance. If you want to have a yard with hardscape and softscape elements complement one another, it is best to trust the experts. They have the skills and the proper materials in order to create the hardscape design that you want to achieve for your yard or garden.
Common Materials Used In Hardscaping
As discussed, hardscape is comprised of the fixed and solid elements in a landscape design. This includes the pathways, driveways, walls and decks in your outdoor area. Each material comes with its own pros and cons. It is best to consult an expert so that you can choose what material is best to use.
Here are some of the most common hardscape material you will see in your yard:
Concrete is one of the most common materials used in hardscaping. One of the advantages to using concrete is that its shape and texture can be customized. By adding certain materials to it, you can even customize its color. It can be used to create a wall or pathway. The problem with concrete is that it holds heat. It could be hot to walk on during hot days. It also has the possibility to crack or break.
Pavers are also made in concrete. They are pre-cast and come in various designs or patterns. It can be used as a pathway for your garden. It can also be installed as your driveway or as added design around your pool. Though pavers have attractive patterns, it can be costly. It is also laborious and time-consuming to install.
Stone is also one of the common hardscaping material. It can vary in size and weight. It also comes in various textures and colors. With a wide variety of stones available, it is easy to find a type that will match with your landscaping design. Depending on the region where it came from, the price can vary as well. It can sometimes get very costly.
Bricks can be used not only as a material for creating walls but also for pathways. It can also be used for patios and as edging for other hardscape elements. The advantage in using bricks is that you can easily clean it. All you have to do is use a hose to wash down all the dirt and the bricks will be good as new. The disadvantage with bricks is that you have to make sure that you use enough pieces because the same design or pattern can be difficult to find. It can also split or crack during bad weather conditions. If you want to use bricks, you have to ensure that you hire an expert to install it.
Decking can be a great addition to any yard. When you talk about composite decking, it is decking that is made of eco-friendly materials such as wood fibers or recycled plastic. Most homeowners prefer to use composite decking because it does not easily rot or mold. It also requires less maintenance unlike wood decking.
Tile is another material used for hardscaping. You usually see it as flooring indoor but it can also be used outdoor. It can be made of ceramic or other material. It comes in different designs making it easier for you to choose one that will match your garden's design. The only disadvantage with tiles is that it can get slippery when it rains or when it gets wet.
Wood has long been used in hardscaping. It can be used for creating decks or other garden buildings. It can also be designed as another material to add aesthetic appeal to your yard. The only issue with wood is that it can rot. It would also require more maintenance so that it will last longer.
Because hardscaping includes the solid elements in your landscape design, this would also mean that loose materials are among the hardscape materials you can make use of. Loose materials include gravel, mulch, rocks and small-sized stones.
Again, when choosing hardscape materials for your yard, make sure to consult a landscaping expert first. They would be able to guide you on how to use the different hardscape materials and incorporate it to your entire landscape design.
Common Hardscape Features
Through the use of different hardscape materials, you would be able to create various features that can transform your landscape design. Regardless if it's a landscape design for your home or for a commercial establishment, you would be able to find the following hardscaping features:
Pathways and sidewalks - The pathways and sidewalks are areas where people can move or walk around your property. It can be made of concrete, pavers or stones. It can also be curved or angled.
Patios - Patios can be a great area where your family or your guests can gather. This allows you to enjoy the outdoors comfortably. Depending on the materials you use, your patio can be simple or luxurious.
Walls and terraces - Walls and terraces can create boundaries in the garden. It separates certain parts of your garden and make it look more organized. Other walls are designed to hold planters with trees or other plants keeping the soil more secure.
Fire pits or fire places - Fire pits and fire place are great additions to any private residence. It can also be good for public parks.
You can experiment on various hardscape materials in order to create various features in your outdoor area. Still, it would be best to hire an expert to do the job for you. By working with an expert, you can ensure that the hardscaping project will be done properly.
Working On A Hardscape Project
Hardscaping can be a very complicated work depending on the size of your outdoor area and the materials you are planning to use. The weather condition can also affect the success of your work. It can be difficult to work outside when it is too hot. Certain materials would also be difficult to install or use during rainy days. You have to consider the weather and choose days where the climate is favorable.
Hire A Professional
Regardless of the weather, professionals are able to undertake a hardscaping project. They have the right set of tools and equipment. With their experience, they already know what to do in case of any weather changes or other circumstances.
Premier Lawn Care is a trusted property maintenance company in Tennessee and surrounding areas. We provide landscaping services to our clients. We also offer hardscaping services for those who want to improve the aesthetic appeal of their outdoor area. Our staff have been trained to provide exceptional service. We have designers and a construction team who can install various hardscaping features in your outdoor area. We will help you in planning the project and ensure that all the hardscaping elements that will be installed in your outdoor area will work well with the softscape elements. Contact us now to know more about our services or to book an appointment.