Landscape Design Billings, Montana ❣
Billings Landscaping specializes in Landscape design. We have been designing landscapes in Billings MT since 2009. We believe that a well designed landscape will accentuate your home or business by grounding, enhancing, and beautifying the building and other structures.
Your landscape is like a home for your home.
Otherwise put, it is an extension of your home. Much like a mountain begins at its base with foothills, your landscape should be a foundation for you home. In addition, your landscape creates the movement, rhythm and composition that carries the eyes to the focal point, your home. Imagine a painting with your house on the canvas. A good landscape designer is like the artist who considers movement, color, focal points, and composition. Good landscape design not only improves the value of your home, but it can actually save you time and money while securing your investment and enhancing your enjoyment of it.
It takes both experience and talent to be a good landscape designer. Good design requires not only an artistic eye, but also a business and problem solving mind combined with practical hands on experience installing and building landscapes.
Our story at Billings Landscaping, LLC began with one of our co-founders who is a licensed expert in horticulture. His intimate knowledge of plants and proper planting techniques has been instrumental in setting us apart. Another strong influence was a landscape architect named Eirik Heikes. Eirik is a internationally recognized tapestry artist and regionally significant botanist. His influence at Billings Landscaping came when he was employed as the director of landscape design at CTA Architects. At Billings Landscaping, our passion is beautifying Billings Landscapes through excellence in landscape design.
Landscape Design ❤ Billings
We’d like to share some information about landscape design in our local area. There really isn’t any substitute for artistic talent and experience, however, there are some tips that I use personally as a landscape designer. I hope they help you make your landscape more beautiful.
Landscape Design Tip #1
Before I offer specific advice and techniques in landscape design, I’d like to suggest this tip for those who don’t have the artistic gift. My tip is to take the time to know your designer. Good designers will have examples of their work available for you to view. This is an important step because it helps you to first know what you want, and secondly, it will help you build confidence and trust in your landscape designer. If you trust your designer, then his or her job is easier. Creative freedom promotes creativity! I always give preference to customers who know my work or are referred by one of our existing clients. For example, the architectural terracing illustrated below is the Bloomquist Residence.
The Bloomquists came to me already knowing my work as a landscape designer. They knew that they wanted a very low maintenance, clean look with safe, easy access to trim their bushes. They had a realistic budget in mind and gave me their complete trust to do whatever I wanted. The end result not only meet their needs, but it completely transformed the curb side appeal and architectural stature of their home!
Landscape Design Tip #2
Good design begins with a clear objective and it flows with fluidity as the project unfolds. The public library has many good books on landscape design and landscape architecture. The main thing to keep in mind is that the landscape needs to compliment the house. The primary purpose of a landscape is to ground the home and make it look like it belongs on the land. Good landscape design always connects the building with the landscape; integrates with functionality of egress; and balances the homes elevation view (which is a 2D side view of the building). Balance can be acquired through many techniques but placement of elevated beds, trees and shrubs are the main ones. You can lengthen the house and make it feel more grounded by softening the corners with trees and large shrubs. Below is an example where I used an elevated bed in combination with a flagstone walk and staircase to ground the home and provide egress through this gorgeous landscape, to the back yard. Also note how I used an aspen tree to balance the vertical space in the elevation of the home (see below).
Landscape Design Tip #3
Whether you are doing a new landscape or restoring an old one, it is important to understand how much time, effort, and expense goes into making it all happen. There a many online resources that can be used to give you an idea of what to expect, and this site is one more specific to Billings Montana. First you need to keep in mind that a professionally designed and installed landscape will likely increase the value of your property by about 20%. In some cases, a new landscape with add 30% to the value of your home. In addition to this, a professional landscape will help you love and appreciate your home while you have it! So what is that worth? A good rule when establishing a budget is to take 10% of the value of you home and apply that to you landscape. That way you double your money. Now this is true for a new landscape, but what if you are renovating an existing landscape? Well unfortunately, removing existing landscapes can be fairly labor intensive, so even though you might keep you lawn and sprinkler system, you will still be looking at about 7% of your property value as a reasonable budget. However, a good designer can restore your landscape and provide that much needed curb appeal for nearly half your expected budget. Most homes in Billings Montana on average would require about $3000-$7000 for a complete transformation. Considering new windows in your home can easily run $10,000 – it is easy to see why renovating your landscape is a very intelligent and cost effective thing to do as a home owner.
Landscape Design Tip #4
Use high quality landscaping materials. You’d be amazed at how many landscaping companies in Billings Montana use the cheapest, crappiest materials and it shows. The City of Billings knows this fact all too well. How many of you noticed the unsightly black edging that looked trashy and unfinished for multiple years immediately following the King Avenue beautification? Even the landscaping along Shiloh road has left much to be desired. Remember, landscapes are supposed to increase in value as they mature! However, landscape companies that specialize in maintenance don’t care one bit about this principle. In fact, they want the landscape to require constant maintenance and upgrades because it increases the value of their maintenance accounts! I often cringe a little when I work up in these higher end subdivision like Ironwood here in Billings and watch them place with paper thin landscape fabric in combination with tens of thousands of dollars worth of quarried stone and fully planted beds. And the unfortunate thing is that the result is usually a trashy looking landscape…which really defeats the whole purpose. A good landscaper and landscape designer wants to create lasting beauty. Unfortunately, many landscape companies loose this focus when they grow larger.
Landscape Design Tip #5
Take advantage of Spring! Springtime is the best time to landscape!!! If you know you need landscaping done, the best thing to do is to have you project designed and bid in the fall or very early spring before the season hits and plants begin showing up at hardware stores, grocery stores, and Walmart superstores. The reason is plant availability. Nurseries in the Billings area do not warranty their plants! In addition, nurseries are expensive. Most nurseries in our local area run their own landscaping outfits and their prices reflect their expectations for profit. When they control the plant supply, they can maintain that competitive edge by gaining position over their competitors. However, they solution is one you likely already know about! The solution is Walmart, Lowe’s, and Home Depot. These three stores warranty their plants for a full year and they have an incredible selection up until about May 20th. By June, their selections are scarce. So if you live in Billings Montana and want to take advantage of the savings, you should plan to landscape in April and May. Another things to keep in mind is that these same stores often carry plants that do not fair well in our climate, so make sure you know what you are buying before you load up that shopping cart. Also, it is easy to go crazy buying plants. Just keep in mind that you need to water them every single day after you get them home! It is always best to have you landscape fully prepared with edging installed and landscape fabric down before you begin planting.