Hardscape Vs. Landscape: What Are the Differences?

Improving the outside of your home increases its value by 5.5-12.7%. This translates to an extra $16,500-$38,100 for an average $300,000 home. Landscaping is one of the most important elements of home value, and it depends on a variety of factors.

The first thing you may think of is natural elements such as plants and grass. Permanent fixtures such as patios or decks are just as important. Using them both in the right way creates a better overall feel, a more enjoyable space, increased curb appeal and

Read our guide to learn the difference between hardscape vs. landscape design and how to make these elements work together.


What Is Hardscaping?

Hardscaping involves creating the physical, immovable parts of your yard, including:

  • Decks
  • Pools
  • Berms
  • Patios
  • Arbors
  • Driveways

There’s a wide range of possible materials for these projects, including concrete, rocks, brick, pavement, stone, and wood.

Hardscaping is essential for several reasons. It keeps areas accessible, prevents excessive water absorption, protects a home’s structural integrity, and provides extra aesthetic appeal.

What is Landscaping?

Landscaping refers to the living areas of your yard, including grass, plants, trees, and flowers. It can also include services to maintain these features such as:

  • Mowing
  • Cutting and edging grass
  • Trimming bushes
  • Laying sod
  • Maintaining yards and grounds

Landscaping vs. Hardscaping

Landscapers and hardscape designers offer different services. One maintains your yard while the other fashions buildings and features that add to its appeal.

Hardscaping features require less maintenance than grass or plants. You’ll have to clean and repair them from time to time, but the time requires is nothing compared to the at least 70 hours per year Americans spend maintaining the landscape features in their yard

Plants and grass used for landscaping change and grow over time. Hardscaping features stay relatively the same.

Hardscaping adds square footage and living space to your home while landscaping is more of an aesthetic choice.

How Can They Work Together?

Understanding the difference between hardscape vs. landscape improvements is essential, but you must also realize that they shouldn’t work against each other. They’re two important factors in the look of your lawn. If you’re looking for a landscaping guide, look for one that also mentions hardscaping features that will add balance to your yard.

Start with the big picture by considering how you want the outside of your home to feel. Create centerpieces of hardscape that are surrounded by landscaping that complements them. Use both to lead the eye from one end of the yard to the other.

Consider the area’s structural integrity. Your hardscaping should protect your landscaping, especially by preventing excess water runoff. A few of the best features for this are retaining walls and stone steps. Use a designer as a hardscaping guide who can recommend the best additions for your home.

More Landscaping and Hardscaping Tips

Knowing the difference between hardscape vs. landscape features is one of the first steps in maximizing the outside area of your home. Plants and grass are beautiful, but they need to be balanced with physical features to prevent excess water saturation and create a more unified feel.

Hiring professionals is one of the best ways to achieve this. They can look at your plans, add the features you want, and recommend others that will give you the best yard on the block.



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