Jurgens Designed Landscapes
H. Richard Jurgens
Professional Site Architect
BS degree in Landscape Architecture, Rutgers University 1971
The Process For a Balanced Landscape by Design
Land Design Guide written by Richard Jurgens
1. The Search - Taking along a notepad
on a special walking tour of the property, we look at the existing landscape
as if you were on vacation studying the grounds for the first time.
We are really looking at the property, the house and the distant views.
Notes are made of the good and poor impressions. Study the front of the
house, the driveways use and size, the main entry walk for both function
and beauty, pretending to be a guest. Is the home appreciated form its
best angle? Looking at the existing trees and plantings, do they achieve
good shade and visual framing purposes or do some overgrown plants detract
from the landscape beauty. From the information on a property survey often
on file, property lines can be marked by indicating who owns what is seen.
2. The Inventory - Measuring the location and size of
the major existing landscape elements will be critical to developing a
scaled base plan. Video/Pictorial tours can record the scene from an eye
perspective. This tape or pictures can record the scene from an eye perspective.
The tape or pictures can be changed into simulated finished landscape images
to better visualize the design concept. Location of North on the survey
will remind us of the cold winter northwest wind that could be blocked
or the southwestern breezes that cool in the summer. The arc of the sun
can be traced with its seasonal changes. This inventory should also
note car or tire noise, the condition of the grass, plants and even
the drainage of the land. Does the water puddle in places or flow toward
the house foundation?
3. The Check List - From the inventory, new thoughts for
your landscape can evolve. Adding your desires possibly staged for some
future schedule should be recorded and evaluated. Are thoughts of a pool
considered? Might herbs, vegetables be fun for dinner? Is there a permanent
meditation bench or swing in the relaxation section of the check list?
Be it just a lawn or a cricket practice yard, active patio area, consider
the ideas now noting that actual construction timetable vary. With a plan,
the final result will still interrelate even if it takes a while to see
your dreams come true.
4. The Concept Area Identification - Next we will look
at which sections of the property will best serve which needs. Noted as
approximate shapes with a scaled size illustrated, these area locations
will be plotted on the base plan so that their positions works and looks
well. Experimenting with location determination to provide good integration
and fit is a very important part of the design process.
5. The Shaping - This is the key to determining the character of a space. Will it be flowing and restful, angular and exciting, or geometric to compliment the architectural lines of the house of other structures? Since this is a 3-D artwork, height for screening or definition is an important concern whether it tends to be a stiff or a more informal character. Shape this sculpture. Note the important view points from which it will be observed.
6, Material Selection - Choosing the paving materials, plant material for color and texture, accent lighting where the landscape is seen without glare, artistic features which personalize the garden, and the types of ground covers and perennials will identify your home with you and your family where everything tends to work together and blend!