I fell in love with color and flowers at a young age. From the rosebush with intense red blooms in my family’s front yard to the flower-lined walkway and colorful bushes at my grandfather’s house, I’ve always found that the dash of life and pop of color that comes from a variety of plants makes any home stand out.

I’ve since learned that my affinity for landscaping that prioritizes flowers, trees, and bushes has a name: softscape landscaping, or softscaping.

If you share the same sentiments and want to learn more about softscaping, keep reading.

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What Is Softscaping?

yard with various softscape elements

There are two common types of outdoor landscaping elements: hardscaping and softscaping.

Hardscaping focuses on objects that aren’t alive and don’t move, such as:

  • Patios
  • Decks
  • Rocks
  • Fountains
  • Walls
  • Stairs
  • Walkways

Softscaping focuses on living elements, such as:

  • Grass
  • Plants
  • Flowers
  • Trees
  • Bushes

Questions to ask yourself before softscaping your yard

A healthy balance of both hardscape and softscape features in a yard is important, but do you think you want to take a more softscape-focused approach? If you’re on the fence, ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you eager to soften up your yard?
  • Would you like to add some natural color to your home’s exterior?
  • Do you have a heart for plants and gardens?
  • Do you have the budget for permanent landscape additions like decks and patios?
  • Are you looking for a landscape design that will allow you to remain versatile?

A softscape-dominant solution is the way to go if you answered “yes” to most of these questions.

Landscaping Trends

landscpape with wind resistant plants

So, you’ve decided that softscaping is the best choice for you. You’ve even done your research and found some hardy flowers to plant that even you can’t kill, but are you up to date on current landscaping trends? Knowing what’s in versus not will give you a head start when you begin designing your own landscape.

Professional landscaping contractors will be well aware of modern landscaping trends and will also have the experience of countless projects to get your vision just right. Staying on top of trends also helps create a good first impression if you are planning on selling your home.

Common softscaping trends

  1. Trees: These tall beauties have a made a comeback in yards and gardens. Not only can trees withstand changing seasons, but during the hotter months trees can provide shade. After all, you’re not softscaping the outside of your home because you want to stay inside all day. You should enjoy your yard, and trees will help you do that.
  2. Lawns: Smaller lawns are in. They don’t take long to manage, and they’re easier to keep hydrated during the hotter months. If, however, you’d like to take advantage of a large lawn, then meadow lawns are what’s in. Pro tip: If you grow meadow lawns further away from the house, then you won’t have to cut the grass as often.
  3. Wind-resistant gardens: The weather is always changing, and for the sake of your yards wind-resistant gardens are a must. These kinds of gardens include flexible stems and shrubbery. Depending on where you live, these gardens would include drought-resistant plants like portulaca, coneflower, or catmint, or for heavy rain areas, plants like black chokeberry or winterberry plants.

Hire a Professional Landscaper

When I think about the yards I liked when I was young, I recall the plants, bushes, and vibrant colors. I also remember how clean everything felt; there was no plant or tree out of place. The softscape scene looked natural but well put together at the same time. It was clear that someone like my grandfather had hired a professional landscaper to create this idealistic space, and the same can be true for you as well.

If you hire a professional landscaper, they will act as an advocate of your vision for your yard. A qualified landscaping company will consult with you and bring years of expertise and training to the table to give you exactly what you want. Professional landscaping companies can also tell you what works best for your yard and for your climate. They’ll know what’s trending and give you a clear picture of what you can accomplish with your space.

Bottom Line

Softscaping alone can do a lot to brighten and liven up your yard. With softscaping, you also have the freedom of versatility and can take a chance on plants, trees, or shrubbery you’ve always wanted to grow. Paired with the experience and trained eye of a professional landscaper, your yard could get a soft and natural update that will leave you, your guests, and neighbors in awe.