I often get asked “What I think of the Landscape Design Software” and “should they get one for their home design” well, my simple answer to that is “NO” but it never ceases to intrigue me the need for it if you are only going to design your own garden. So I decided to write about this and just point out my thoughts on the subject!!!
One thing we have to remember is that the majority of these design programs are not very good and have terrible graphics, not all but most, especially those that are aimed at the domestic market. let’s just understand where I’m coming from…. I am all about you saving money and having a go yourself, so I don’t really think it’s necessary for you to rush out and purchase a design software program only for you to be somewhat dissapointed with it’s performance.
If you have one and you are happy with what it does for you then great, I would encourage you to use it as much as possible for your design ideas, however, if you haven’t got one, there is not an essential need that you rush out and buy one. You still need to come up with the design anyway, and I think it’s far better to be out side where you can see all the elements that will be effecting what you want to do.
It would be remiss of me though not to mention that there are some good programs, These will show you things like what the plants will look like in all four seasons and what they will look like in a number of years time, when your house plan is placed on a plan of your block and done to exact scale, the program will show shadows through the day etc. These are more costly than the large variety available, but they are worth it if you intend to use them a lot. Then there are the Rolls Royce of programs that have an incredible data base of flora, these are really for Landscape Architects and Garden designers that are designing for clients.
My advice before purchasing any would be, try and see them being used first or get a trial run before purchasing, see if there are any reviews or You tube videos on them, allowing you to decide whether you are happy with the graphics and the capabilities of the program.
Either way, whether you have software or not, there is no better way to design your garden than to be in it…. you feel what the garden needs and you can picture what you can do, in real size. Well….that’s the way I feel about it anyway.
Enjoy your garden and take care.