Down To Earth designs and installs many different types of hardscapes. The following summary details some of our offerings and explains the benefit of landscape construction.
Definition is sometimes clearer or easier when describing what something is not rather than what it is. Landscape construction or hardscapes, as some refer to it, is everything in the landscape that is NOT planting. It is not alive. It does not grow. With minor exception it does not change its form after the job’s completion. What you see is usually what you get – as opposed to the diversely fluid life span of the planted garden.
Landscape construction certainly defines outdoor space in the same way that planting beautifies outdoor space. Successful construction design and implementation has the ability to delineate space in a way that brings continuity and flow between the house and garden. It fortifies the functionality of the garden, pulling the user out as a participant rather than a mere observer. Its results are usually very immediate and in most cases permanent. It allows landscape to become architecture.
Outdoor rooms are created by intermingling and manipulating floors, ceilings, walls, and doors. Different media for each of those elements are chosen and integrated to bring about contrasting garden experiences. Garden walls might be fencing, wooden screening, solid panels of brick and stone, short retaining walls, or taller, free-standing enclosure walls. Floors can be segments of suspended decking, all types of paving, or visually can even be horizontal planes of water. Ceilings are normally partial ceiling such as awning, arbors, or trellises, but will sometimes become a fully functional ceiling as with the summerhouse, pavilion, or pool house.