Landscape Design & Maintenance

garden shed and landscaped yard


If this section is addressed in training, you will be able to articulate and explain:

  • The elements of the art of landscape design

    • Color, texture, form, line, space, pattern, and light

  • Basic steps of landscape design based on biology, site analysis, engineering and project management

    • Assess the site in relation to the goals of the project

      • Define the environment both above and below the ground

      • Consider the function of the space-function before form

      • Make a list of the things you would like to include in the final plan

    • Develop a theme/themes for the landscape for filtering decisions

      • Design for beauty using the elements of art in the landscape

      • Determine which functions would be best served by hardscape and which by plants

      • Design the structure and layout of the landscape

    • Assess the factors influencing the design

      • Assess what is good in the existing landscape and what needs to be eliminated

      • Develop a budget (labor and materials) for the entire project and sub-projects

      • Consider labor and financial costs of long-term maintenance

      • Create an installation timeline where hardscape precedes planting

    • Installation: Select plants and use proper planting practices

  • Filter plant choices by theme

  • Choose plants by function and suitability to site

  • Consider hardiness, size, color, texture, and seasonality

  • Develop effective, scaled, sustainable plant combinations

  • Follow good planting and establishment practices

  • Applying landscape design principles to projects

    • Balance/Style

    • Dominance, focal point, focalization

    • Scale and proportion Rhythm and repetition

    • Transition/Tension

    • Contrast

    • Unity

    • Simplicity

  • Evolution of landscape design in reaction to environmental stewardship

    • Sustainability

    • Appropriate use of native and non-invasive exotic plants

    • Water quality and conservation

    • Energy conservation

    • Developing sustainable landscapes that have long term, low carbon footprint.

    • Awareness of what practices will help meet the goals of the space and sustainability


UMaine Extension Bulletins

UMaine Extension Videos

Additional Resources


  • Be able to assess a landscape design – highlighting strengths and offering areas for improvement

  • Be able to draw a bubble diagram of a home landscape design.