Landscape Design: Tips for Beginners

Planning a landscaping project can be a daunting task. It can seem especially challenging if you have a large yard, or you need to work around elevation changes, drainage issues or other natural features. A skilled landscape designer like an Eagle Bay installer can help, but working on a plan to share with your installer can help ensure that your outdoor living space turns out exactly how you envision it. Use these tips the next time you’re planning a patio, garden or landscaping feature.

Make a List of Needs

Start your landscape draft by making a list of needs and wants. Do you need to level your yard to have more useable space? Do you want to use only native plants? Writing out a list of how your family might use the space can also play a crucial role in your planning. The more detailed your wish list, the more accurate your landscape plan will be.


“Most patios are designed with set features in mind. Be it a pool, water feature, fire feature or outdoor kitchen. Having an idea of what the homeowner wants allows us to create a more cohesive design. The more details we have, the better we can make the whole project flow,” says Cole Lineberry of the Eagle Bay Design Studio.

Consider Feature Locations

Patterning sun trajectory and wind direction is also important when planning your landscape. You need to make sure your plants are getting the sun they need, but might not want your outdoor kitchen directly under it while you’re trying to cook. Use apps like sun seeker to accurately pattern the way the sun travels over your patio. That, combined with historic wind data from the National Weather Service, will help you position your patio elements for maximum comfort.

Spend Time Outside

Before committing, spend some time in your backyard. Think about where you’d realistically be most comfortable hanging out, swimming or gardening. Then identify a few focal points. For example, if you’re installing a reading nook, would you rather be facing your neighbor’s house or the wood line? Becoming oriented with your outdoor living space will give you a more instinctual feel for how your design should flow, which will make your final installation more comfortable.

Be Open to Change

Having a detailed plan to share with your installer is great, but remember to stay open to their suggestions. They’re experts that spend their whole work day crafting beautiful outdoor living spaces. Take their guidance into consideration, work collaboratively and you’ll end up with the patio of your dreams.


Once you’ve completed your initial sketches, you can use our Installer Locator Tool to find an installer near you. They’ll visit your property, take measurements and create a rendering showing a recommended patio design. Planning a patio is a fun and exciting process, enjoy it!