Finish the Look with Hardscaping & Landscaping
Landscaping can have a dramatic effect on the appearance of your property. Even the smallest front yard or backyard can shine when it’s tastefully outfitted with just the right above ground or in-ground features. Some landscaping features are seasonal and change throughout the year. However, certain permanent features remain unchanged and always provide the same aesthetic appeal and functional usefulness.
In the LA area, your best choice for a hardscaping and landscaping company is Aspen General Contractors. With decades of experience in the business, we have the expertise needed to design and successfully complete even the largest custom projects. And in all cases, we combine this skill with top-quality customer service and respect for your bottom line.
What Are Hardscaping and Landscaping?
The term landscaping applies broadly to any purposeful alteration of the grounds on a piece of property. Homeowners often have landscaping work done primarily for aesthetic reasons, although in some cases it mostly serves a functional purpose (such as providing drainage or keeping soil firmly in place in steep areas). In many cases, the most successful landscaping projects seamlessly combine aesthetic and functional considerations.
Landscapers divide their work into two general categories: softscape and hardscape. The term softscape applies to all of the living, horticultural elements in a landscaping layout, including flowers, flower beds, shrubs and other plants. The term also refers to the activities used to control the health and appearance of these living elements (e.g., mowing, planting, trimming, watering and feeding).
In contrast, the hardscape category includes the inanimate, basically unchanging elements of a landscaping layout. This category gets its name because the materials used to create hardscapes are hard and durable. Common examples of these materials include wood (as opposed to live trees or shrubs) and forms of masonry such as brick, stone, and concrete. In addition, some hardscaping projects utilize metal as a main or secondary material. Landscaping includes any structure with subterranean (i.e., underground or partially underground) elements.
Types of Hardscaping Projects
The range of potential hardscaping projects is limited only by your imagination. With the help of a qualified contractor, you can actualize almost any design and create a functional, aesthetically pleasing front or back yard that increases your enjoyment of your property, and also makes your property more valuable. For the sake of convenience, we sometimes divide hardscaping projects according to the primary materials they require. However, we can use these materials in any combination needed to achieve your desired objective.
Wood is commonly used to make a variety of decorative and functional hardscaping features. Familiar examples include wooden fences used to mark the boundary of your yard and wooden decks used to form outdoor recreational spaces. Your plans may also include wooden gazebos that combine outdoor beautification with functional seating and/or wooden arbors, lattices or pergolas that serve as a framework for vines and other live landscaping elements.
If anything, masonry is used for an even broader range of hardscaping projects than wood. The long list of potential projects in this category includes patios made from brick, tile, flagstone or concrete; walkways made from any of these same materials; gravel walkways; stone, brick or concrete retaining walls; and stone, brick or concrete steps. In addition, most landscaping projects utilize some sort of masonry as their primary material.
The most common form of metal hardscaping is probably the steel, aluminum or wrought-iron edging used to mark the borders of flowerbeds and other softscaping installations. In some cases, this edging acts primarily as a low retaining wall for organic materials such as soil and mulch. However, edging also comes in highly decorative forms that add considerable beauty to your yard. Other hardscaping options with metal as the main material include wrought-iron fences, gates, trellises and furniture.
Hardscaping becomes landscaping whenever the material in use sits in the ground or against the ground instead of at ground level or higher. Perhaps the best-known example of this subcategory is a retaining wall that holds back the earth at a significant drop-off in your yard’s elevation. Depending on the details of the project, the installation of a decorative pond, pool or fountain may also qualify as a form of landscaping.
Although made primarily from masonry materials, water features are commonly grouped together in their own hardscaping category. This popular category includes small-scale projects such as birdbaths and certain types of fountains, ponds, pools and waterwalls. It also includes more extensive projects such as artificial creeks and larger fountains, waterwalls, pools and ponds. Many water features require excavation during the installation process, although some are entirely above-ground.
Why Hire Hardscaping Professionals?
Some smaller hardscaping projects potentially qualify as do-it-yourself undertakings. However, sizable projects typically go well beyond the scope of most DIY enthusiasts. That’s because large-scale hardscaping frequently requires serious labor, as well as the use of heavy equipment and specialized tools. Even on small-scale projects, the required design, preparation and execution can easily challenge your patience and skill level. Ultimately, homeowners commonly turn to hardscaping professionals in order to ensure the quality of the work they receive.
At Aspen General Contractors, we take care of all your hardscaping and landscaping needs. From design assistance, site preparation, and installation, our general contractors will help you take your project from dream to reality. Whether you’re planning a small, above-ground water feature or large-scale landscaping involving multiple features, we’ll perform the work in a timely manner while protecting your valuable property. We’ll also maintain a safe environment at all times, whether the job calls for hand tools or heavy machinery.