If you’re considering revamping your backyard or patio, it can be hard to know exactly what to do and how much it will cost.

Making things muddy, any professional that you ask for help will likely have questions of their own: landscaping vs gardening.

“Do you want gardening or landscape help?”. “What kind of gardening do you want?”. “What landscape elements are you looking for?”

For many, the answer to these questions is “I don’t know!”. After all, it can be confusing to distinguish between landscaping vs gardening – and even harder to understand the costs, options, and distinguishing factors associated with each.

Here’s everything you need to know about landscaping vs gardening.

Comparing landscaping vs gardening

Both are home improvement techniques that use plants, rocks, and other elements to elevate an outdoor space. That said, there are general differences between the two.

Gardening is the process of planting, growing, and maintaining plants and flowers. It can range from a single potted plant to a whole yard with a variety of plant types and colours.

Landscaping, on the other hand, generally includes additional elements like topiaries, water features, ponds, or structures. There are often more aesthetic and practical possibilities with. Many landscape professionals also offer gardening services.

Landscaping vs gardening: Pros and cons

Pros and Cons of Gardening

Gardening is a healthy and positive practice that can quite literally add life to any outdoor space. Pros include:

  • Anyone can garden, making it accessible and cost-effective
  • Gardening can be a healthy hobby that encourages fresh air and time outdoors
  • There’s a lot of variety when it comes to gardening, as you can pick one specific plant or a variety of plants for shade, beauty, and even culinary purposes
  • Gardening requires very little change to the existing landscape or layout of the space

However, there are also cons. Specifically:

  • The fact that very little landscape change happens can also be a con, particularly if you want a big revamp.
  • It’s difficult to make an outdoor space more “livable” and “homey” with gardening alone, as you can’t add any elements to sit or relax.
  • Gardening needs to be an ongoing activity, as plants require ongoing maintenance and care. This can certainly be a pro if you have a green thumb or if you hire the right gardener, but a con if you just want to “set it and forget it.”

Pros and Cons of Landscape Services

This is usually carried out by authorised professionals.

Some pros include:

  • It can create a whole external environment, as it can include building a retaining wall, adding outdoor lighting, adding irrigation, adding structures, adding paths, adding plants – you name it.
  • it generally includes a design element, created by highly skilled and trained architects. This can create a balanced, elevated, and sophisticated space that you can’t often get with a garden alone.

That said, this option is generally more expensive than gardening. It also requires more construction, work, and permissions, so it’s not always the best idea if you’re looking for something easy and straightforward.

Looking to dive deeper? Get the FULL Pros & Cons of Professional Landscapes here

How to choose the right option for your yard

So which option will work best for you? In order to decide, you must:

    • Understand your yard, considering elements like yard size, the weather, the soil type, and the typography of your site. You may want a lush garden with all kinds of plants and flowers, but if you don’t live in a climate that will support it – or you don’t have soil to help keep it alive – it’ll never work. In such cases, you will be better off with some hardscape and potted plants, for example.
    • Consider who will be using your yard: Who will be using your space and how? Do you have children and pets that will destroy any delicate plants? Do you want to use the space for entertaining? Remember, landscaping allows you to create various spaces with specific usages, so it can be the right choice if you have something in particular in mind. Alternatively, you may have a house full of green thumbs, and you may want to spend quality time planting and growing in your yard. Understanding exactly what you’re needing will help you decide between gardening vs landscaping.
  • Consider if you have a theme: Do you want to create a completely zen space inspired by Oriental design? Do you want a lush herb, fruit, and vegetable garden that will keep you from going to the grocery store so much? Understanding the final theme that you’re going for will help you make a final decision.
  • Think about the future: It can also be important to look into the future and think about what will happen when your kids are grown or when you want to sell your house. Is additional resale value something that’s important? This can also influence your final decision.

Is hiring a professional worth it?

In short, yes. Hiring a professional landscaper or gardener can improve the curb appeal of your home, enticing buyers or possible renters to move forward with a sale.

On top of that, professional outdoor services can be a cost-effective investment. There are many elements to consider, including the climate, drainage, the right materials – the list goes on.

A professional will also do the job right the first time and ensure that you have the right plants and elements for your space and your needs. This will save money in the long run, as you won’t have to re-do the work, and you won’t be at risk of planting the wrong plants and having them die.

Worried about price? Check out our Sydney Landscape Price Guide here

Still can’t decide about landscaping vs gardening?

It’s important to consider your climate, your needs, and your goals for the outdoor space when deciding between the two.

If you have a green thumb and you really want lots of plants and animals in your yard – without the fuss or extra costs – then gardening services may be most appropriate for you.

If you want to create a dazzling outdoor space, then hiring a landscape service may be the better option. It’s all about considering your unique needs.

Have any questions? We’re happy to answer them on 0415 837 699. Or, organise your personal design consultation with an experienced landscape designer online.