Why hire a qualified landscape/garden designer?
Landscape and garden designers are typically educated in landscape design and horticulture. They are trained to provide professional plans, from conceptual designs through to planting plans, construction drawings, material selection, detailing and pricing. Many garden designers will also provide a service to supervise the works as they progress on site.
They will work closely with you to provide the optimum design for the site and for your requirements. An independent designer, working for you, is free to recommend the best, skilled and reliable contractors to carry out the design.
The garden plans provided by the designer will allow you to plan for the landscape work step by step. The landscaping can then be carried out in stages or all together depending on budget. Poor design, offered by those without design training, will cost you money in the long run.
We are about to start some building work. When should we think about the landscaping?
The earlier the better! As a trained professional a landscape designer can consider how the new build will work with the garden/landscape, views, light, circulation, creation of space, access etc.
Existing trees may need to be considered and protected before work commences. Drainage, changes in level and storage and use/disposal of topsoil will also need to be planned for.
Having a design at an early stage will address issues as the build progresses, rather than having to come up with solutions on the spot. It will also allow you to budget for landscaping as part of the cost of your build.
How much does a design cost?
Usually the designer will charge for the different phases of the work. These charges will vary from designer to designer.
Almost all garden designers will charge an initial call-out fee ranging between €50 – €150. A mileage rate may also be charged depending on the distance travelled.
This initial visit will last 1-2hrs and enables the designer to assess the site and your needs. This initial visit and advice can be stand-alone or a stepping stone to further concept and detailed plans. The designer can, having assessed the site, give you an estimate of what fees are involved in producing design drawings for your garden.
If the designer manages or monitors the implementation of the project an hourly rate or fixed fee will be agreed for this phase. See also The Design Process