My Two Absolute Favorite Landscape Design Inspiration Sources At The Moment (And Please Share Yours!)
As y’all know, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about landscaping lately. I met with a landscape designer last week, and I got an email yesterday from him saying that he has our plan just about finished. So I’ll be meeting with him next week to see what ideas he has. In the meantime, I’ve become a bit obsessed with two particular sources of landscape design inspiration, and I wanted to be sure that you know about them if you’re looking for inspiration for your own landscaping.
Garden Answer YouTube Channel
Over the last two weeks, I’ve been binging videos on the Garden Answer YouTube channel every single chance I get. I cannot get enough of this woman’s landscaping! Never in my life would I have thought that I’d sit and watch an hour-long video tour of someone walking through their landscaping and explaining all of the details, and yet, here I am doing just that. And I can’t get enough. I’ll share a few screenshots of her June Garden Tour to give you an idea of what her videos look like.
The woman’s name is Laura, and the landscaping around her home is absolutely gorgeous. But I love that it’s still a work in progress, and she has quite a bit more to do. In her videos, she shares the process of picking plants, explains why she picks what, and then explains why she puts certain plants in certain areas.
She uses such a beautiful combination of plants, hardscape, and decorative garden items like fountains. She’s obviously been doing this for a long time because she’s very knowledgeable, while at the same time, she’s still learning as she goes.
I’m continually impressed by her vast knowledge about the plants that she has planted all around her two-acre lot. She can rattle off the names of the plants effortlessly. It’s really amazing! And her gardens are what made me really fall in love with the idea of a gravel driveway and pathways. They’re just so charming.
I also love the variety of areas that she has planted. She has lots of landscaped areas that are just supposed to be pretty and inviting, like this gorgeous area below…
But then she also has a fenced off vegetable garden that’s just as pretty as the rest, but actually produces food for her chickens and her family.
And then there’s the chicken coop with beautiful plants around it, and other beautiful gardens that you can stroll through and enjoy just for their beauty.
And then she has another area with beds where she plants berries (blackberries, I think), and then she has this large area specifically for a cut flower garden.
Speaking of which, she also creates some gorgeous cut flower arrangements, so those are fun to watch as well.
So if I had to choose my absolutely favorite, the Garden Answer YouTube channel would be my choice. I could seriously watch her videos all day long.
Bobby K. Designs YouTube Channel
The Bobby K. Designs YouTube channel is my favorite for very practical information like, “How much is that going to cost?” Bobby is an actual landscape designer, and he takes real world homes and does these wonderful mock ups using whatever computer program he uses. I love actually watching the process as he takes a plain yard and starts creating his design on the mock up. He explains the process, and why he’s choosing certain elements. I also really like that he does mock ups of homes all around the country so that you can see what will work where.
Here’s a screenshot of one house before he did his mock up.
And then using his program to do the mock up, this is the design he came up with.
What I also really appreciate about his videos is that he gives actual estimated costs depending on if you want to DIY the project, or if you want to hire someone to do the installation for you. You can see on the screenshot above that it has the DIY estimated cost, where the one below has the estimated cost for a company like his to install it.
Here’s another example that he did, starting with a home with no landscaping at all…
After designing the house in his program, he started adding landscaping to the lot, explaining why he chose the things he chose.
And then he wrapped it up with an estimated DIY cost…
And then an estimated cost for a landscaping company to install it.
That practical information is so useful for someone like myself who has never done much landscaping at all, and has no clue what to even expect or to budget for projects like this. So if that interests you, check out the Bobby K Designs YouTube channel.
Those are my two favorite go-to landscaping inspiration resources right now. Any time I have some downtime, I head to YouTube and search one of these two channels for a video I haven’t watched yet. I love the inspiration, and I’m so anxious to get started on our landscaping!
If you have any go-to resources for landscaping inspiration, please share them! I’d love to add more to my current very short list of go-to landscaping inspiration sources.
Sidenote: Y’all, I’m so sorry about all of the technical difficulties with my blog this week! It’s been kind of a nightmare with my blog going down about 30 times a day, and my website host not being able to figure out what was causing the problem (and really not putting much effort into it, according to the emails they were sending me). I had my website switched over to a new website host yesterday. They are awesome, very hands-on, and I’m pretty sure everything is working smoothly again. I still don’t know why the comment section looks so crazy with that ugly font, but that’s the least of my worries. I’ll figure that out eventually.
We got our landscape design from the landscape designer, and I couldn’t be more excited!! You can click here to see the beautiful design he gave us.
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.
Laura (Garden Answer) is my absolute favorite!!!
I agree—she is terrific and so knowledgeable! I have a very short attention span but I am able to watch her videos for long periods of time!
I agree, I love Laura, she’s the reason I started gardening.
I watch Garden Answer daily! Live Laura and her color choices are typically the cool tones that I love. I also like Dig, Plant, Repeat and Creekside Gardens.
Me too, Arian! Love all three, but Garden Answer just can’t be beat!
Ooh perfect timing! I have a friend wanting my help to redesign the interior and exterior porch and patio areas of her antebellum home. She has a half dozen free range chickens and I was thinking no plants could survive them. I am anxious to see what The Garden Answer YouTube channel says about that.
Wow. I loved this. I learned so much. And I love her gardens! And I love his drawings. I need to think outside the box.
Be sure to think about the amount of maintenance that each design requires. The first pics of the woman’s yard would take daily work and probably most of each day! But it’s all worth it. Your yard has great potential.
Laura sounds like the Kristi of yard design/plants/landscaping: incredibly knowledgeable, does a great job explaining things, but relatable and still learning!
I’ve watched Laura, on Garden Answers for years. Her folks own a nursery and their garden is lovely also. She is extremely knowledgeable.
The other one you found is new to me but love that he gives prices.
This is a site that I like for garden design, reasonably local to you (I’m closer to Austin, which is where Lisa is based, but there should be a lot that’s still applicable): https://lisalapaso.com/
My husband and I spent 13 years landscaping our new construction property. I loved working in the yard, planting, designing, and getting dirty. It takes a lot of money to get a yard landscaped no matter who does it. But the one thing to keep in mind is it takes a lot of work to keep it up. Every year it is hauling more dirt, more manure, more mulch and replacing flowers that didn’t quite make it. It is never-ending. So be prepared to do most of the upkeep yourself or be ready to pay to have the work done. I do not want to discourage you but the bigger the project the more work at upkeep if you want it to be as pretty as it is when it is first installed. Be ready in early spring through the end of growing season for never ending tasks. Ask your landscaper about what it will take to keep their design looking as good as it does from the beginning. If he says it takes care of itself or not much work at all get an honest landscaper. I love everything about gardening but I’m in my 80th year and I have to admit it is finally getting to be too much work. The videos are fantastic. the designs are inspiring. What ever you end up with will be beautiful I’m sure. I will be cheering you on all along the voyage to a yard you love to be in.
Second this. And Susan, I hope I’m still gardening at 80! We have a 1/3 acre vegetable garden and a bunch of native/seminative edible landscaping around the house, and it IS a commitment. But so worth it!
I can’t tell if my other comment was posted so–I’ll pare it down and add it here.
If you’re going to put money into plantings, consider edible landscaping! Even if you don’t plan to harvest everything, you can grant specific permission to others to harvest. (Or the birds.) We have been blessed by a friend’s orchard, and I have regretted every large non-edible tree or shrub I’ve ever put in.
Here’s a lovely book on edible landscape design: https://www.amazon.com/Beautiful-Edible-Garden-Stylish-Vegetables/dp/1607742330
With inflation, grocery prices and supply chain insecurity, an edible yard is discreet insurance.
This is a delightful documentary on “back to Eden” woodchip gardening from a fellow believer. https://www.bitchute.com/video/pXNf2AW0QxhE/
I can’t vouch for the concept in an annual vegetable garden, but it WORKS with perennials. Please don’t let yourself get talked into rolls and rolls of landscape fabric without doing some more research. (It looks ratty and pokes out in 3 years anyway, and then it’s a nightmare to remove and inhibits good soil nutrient exchange.)
Susan, you are another poster who offers good advice about the work involved in maintaining a garden.
Oh, I watch Laura of Garden Answer DAILY! Her place is amazing and her knowledge is mind boggling for one so young!
Considering your love of color and your creativity, I look forward to seeing your gardens. Mine are more haphazard and a little “too” natural, but the front is in full bloom now and I’m in love with it every day. I’ve been thinking about moving (neighbor problems) and it breaks my heart to think of leaving my flowers behind.
Join a garden club, they usually have garden tours. Visit gardens in your area to see what grows. Laura is a zone 5 I believe, you are probably in zone 8. Things she can grow, don’t do well in Waco because of the heat. My daughter loves in San Antonio and I live in zone 5. I visit her and want to take home different plants but they won’t survive my winters. Also garden club friends share plants that they have. I’ve saved a fortune on landscaping my garden by friends that have given me plants.
Look for Garden Walks. I learned what grows in my area and different styles of garden arrangements.
Yes. That and local botanic gardens. Also, for you:
-Ladybird Johnson wildflower gardens in TX
I like the book “Front Yard Gardens” and Melinda Myers .net for all kinds of advice…MW related but you can apply the general principles.
Siting plants right and using a larger amount of plants native to Waco TX will decrease your garden maintenance.
Also consider having things that bloom at different times of the year plus leaf texture, ht, etc.
I like wild edibles too, and if you pick native edibles you are also supporting the local ecosystem ie more birds, friendly bugs, butterflies.
Also avoid seas of mulch, as you will need to replace it. Better is to have drifts of plants that grow close together to become “living mulch”.
Just because you use natives doesn’t mean you have to have a wildflower garden look or a prairie, Native plants can be used in formal plantings too. There are also cultivars of native species.
Garden answer. Her artistry is amazing and I love her easiness in front of the camera and her honesty. Bobby K design is interesting for much less ambitious gardeners. I’m sure whatever you do will be amazing.
I am looking forward to what your designer suggests. And I am happy you’re back online!
I want to reinforce what some other commenters have said and that is, basically, “Beware what you create.” Laura at Garden Answer is assuredly knowledgebale and creative, but it’s a fact that she has a staff to maintain her property. There is no way one or two people can maintain a picture perfect landscare of that size. Like other Youtubers, she makes money from her videos. It’s a business and she gets complimentary product from companies like Gardeners Supply Company and Proven WInners plants. Also, her climate has very different, so don’t fall in love with every plants she chooses.
I’m 80 and I’ve gardened all my life in climates as diverse as coastal New England, Arizona desert and North Carolina mountains. There is no such thing as a no-maintenance landscape, and even the term “low maintenance” is a stretch. Considering that you are new to gardening, that your husband counts on your help daily, that you spend time with family and church, and that you have a thriving blog where you post almost daily the projects that you work on seemingly into the late night…I have to wonder how you will find time to tend to a landscape.
I’m not saying, leave your yard alone. But my advice is that you make sure your designer knows how much time you can give your yard. Or what you are willing to pay someone to mow, edge, weed, prune, fertilize, and replant a landscape in Texas that you want to look good year round. Don’t forget the cost of supplies, equipment, and water to irrigate.
I love the practicality Bobby K. brings to landscape design.
Please remember to check any plant list with your local county extension service so they can advise you on the latest diseases, pests, cultivars, and invasives since these things are always changing.
A garden will reward you a thousand times over! I know your creative eye and attention to detail can settle on something you love as long as you are realistic about your lifestyle.
Barbara, very wise words about what’s involved about time and costs!
Check out Linda Vater on YouTube. She is in Oklahoma City, which is probably more similar to you than Eastern Oregon, where Laura from Garden Answer lives. Linda has written a book with landscape design tips, and has been doing a video series on design as well. Check out her videos on Creating an Entrance, Framing the View and her latest – Focal Points for some great design tips. I watch both Laura and Linda and love them both for different reasons. Linda’s landscape is more mature, and her emphasis is on lifestyle. Laura has boundless energy and enthusiasm. I’ve learned a ton from both of them, just like I have learned tons from you! Good luck with your landscaping! It’s a lot of work, but I find it very rewarding!
Laura is the only person who I have waited in a meet and greet line for. 🙂 She is directly responsible for the thousands of bulbs I now have in my yard! If nothing else, she reminds you of the beauty in everyday landscapes. (She is just as nice in person as she is in her videos.)
I recently started watching Bobby K. as well, and I think he’s quite informative.
Linda Vater is another good gardening YouTuber.
One of my favorites is Le Jardinet – lejardinetdesigns.com. She focuses on foliage first so everything looks interesting. Flowers are treated like throw pillows so even if nothing is in bloom it all still looks pretty.
I’ve been a Garden Answer fan for a long time…but Bobby K is new to me. Looking forward to checking out his videos!
“Robbie And Gary Gardening Easy” on youtube they have DIY solar hummingbird feeders and some fabulous diy custom curbing rocks.
Then I found “Harmony Hills Home and Garden” from above. Looks like they have a yard reno series.