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5 Top Landscape Design Trends

The Landscape Design trends we are seeing in Melbourne owe much to practicality as well as the aesthetic. These trends reflect the lifestyle of summer in Melbourne but are also provide a practical landscape design with drought tolerant plants and low maintenance gardens.

We have listed the top design trends being followed by landscape designers.

1. Mid-century Palm Springs landscape design style

This is a landscape design style associated with cacti, granitic sand, concrete paving, and breeze-blocks. Often, this takes the form of hard landscaping in light grey or stark white, contrasting with splashes of colour from the plantings. The result is typical Palm Springs glamour with low maintenance and drought resistant gardens.

Palm Springs style landscaping - Reds Landscaping & Design
Palm Springs style landscaping often features cacti, and succulents such as agave with plants to provide a splash of colour.

The dry desert climate of Palm Spring, with its warm winters and abundance of space, is ideal for outdoor entertaining areas. Often, these will feature a fire pit area or a swimming pool as a focal point.

Custom Design Lap Pool - Reds Landscaping & Design
Outdoor entertainment areas with a swimming pool and a fire are often features of the Palm Springs design style.

Despite the low rainfall, the courtyard swimming pool in Palm Springs is a "must have" even in the smaller landscaped gardens.

Palm Springs gardens often provide a splash of colour with hot torch lilies, geraniums, roses, and bougainvillea.

Palm Springs Landscape Design Style - Reds Landscaping & Design
Palm Springs Landscape Design Style with Agave and Colour contrast provided by red hot poker plant (Kniphofia uvaria).

For the drought tolerant garden, succulents, ornamental grasses, and especially barrel cacti, proliferate. The Palm Springs landscapers also make use of the local gravel, abundant boulders and the native palms from the area.


Palm Springs Landscaping Style with Barrel cacti and boulders - Reds Landscaping & Design
Palm Springs Landscaping Style with Barrel cacti and boulders.

The barrel cactus (echinocactus grusonii), also known as the "Golden Ball Cactus" or "Mother-in-law's Cushion," makes a bold statement in landscape design. This plant, which is native to east central Mexico, is actually endangered in the wild.

Rancho Mirage near Palm Spring in California - Reds Landscaping & Design
Rancho Mirage near Palm Spring in California is an example of Palm Springs resort style landscaping. Agave and palms with contrasting splashes of colour contrast with the white walls of the buildings.

Succulents like agave thrive in the warmer subtropical gardens and can survive the occasional dry spell.

Indian Canyon Palm Springs - Reds Landscaping & Design
Indian Canyon Palm Springs. The abundance of boulders and the indigenous palm trees heavily influence the Palm Springs landscape design style.


2. Tuscan Mediterranean style

The design style of the Mediterranean or Tuscan garden is rooted in the choice of landscaping materials, textures, and colours. Garden features such as cobbled paving, tiles, stones, bricks, and especially terracotta, will enhance the Mediterranean feel. Neatly clipped hedges, gravel mulch, and soft colours contrasting with brightly coloured tiles are often found in the Mediterranean and Tuscan gardens. For landscaping Melbourne gardens, consider mixing this with less formal, drought tolerant plants and plants that give off a pleasant aroma.


Tuscan garden landscape design style - Reds Landscaping & Design
Tuscan garden landscape design style with vines growing over a rustic pergola.

The rustic Tuscan gardens are often associated with Italian rural villas and are much less formal than the Italian Renaissance gardens. These gardens often feature deep blues complementing the terracotta pots or roof tiles, as well as olives, agaves, and deep green mosaics.

Landscaping with olives in pots on a white balcony - Reds Landscaping & Design
Landscaping with olives in pots on a white balcony. Olives are often a feature of Mediterranean Gardens.


The Boboli Gardens in Florence are an example of a more formal Italian design style - Reds Landscaping & Design
The Boboli Gardens in Florence are an example of a more formal Italian design style, but the crushed granite and earthy colours are also features of the rustic Tuscan gardens.

3. Modern contemporary landscape design

This design style features concrete cantilevered steps and black steel water features with lime green structural planting.

Concrete cantilevered steppers floating steps Modern Contemporary - Reds Landscaping & Design
Concrete cantilevered steppers floating steps Modern Contemporary.

Balance and symmetry are features of this design style, and it is the ideal design style for contemporary homes. In contrast to the design and colours of the Tuscan garden, industrial style raw concrete is common in this style of garden, as well as stone and wooden garden ornaments.

Landscape design with structural lime planting - Reds Landscaping & Design
Landscape design with structural lime planting and Italian pencil pines.


Patio with Lime green structural plantings - Reds Landscaping & Design
The symmetry and balance of contemporary landscape design. Patio with Lime green structural plantings.

Modern Contemporary landscape design style video


4. French Provincial design

The French Provincial Landscape Design Style features hedges, ornamental pears, cobblestone driveways, and anduze pots. The hedges are often box hedges (buxus) and flowering plums (prunus).

Anduze Pottery - Reds Landscaping & Design
Anduze pottery has been made in the Anduze commune in the south of France since the early 1600s. The design style influenced by Florentine pottery.


A French Provincial garden with patio and Anduze pots - Reds Landscaping & Design
A French Provincial garden with patio and Anduze pots.

The French Provincial style has many similarities with the Tuscan landscaping design style.

French Provincial house - Reds Landscaping & Design
The French Provincial house is an influence on this landscape design style.



French Landscape design is influenced by the cobbled streets of France - Reds Landscaping & Design
French Landscape design is influenced by the cobbled streets of France.

5. Coastal Garden Design Style

This design style features loose plantings of native grasses like Lomandra, native shrubs, and whitewashed timber batten screens. Local boulders are also a big part of this landscape design style.

The coastal landscape design style is often used for hardy, low maintenance commercial landscaping of public spaces.


Coastal Garden design style is often used in commercial landscaping - Reds Landscaping & Design
Coastal Garden design style is often used in commercial landscaping.

Hardy Australian native grasses make an attractive and drought resistant garden.

Australian grass Swamp Foxtail, Cenchrus purpurascens - Reds Landscaping & Design
Sunlight shining through the feathery flowerheads of the native Australian grass Swamp Foxtail, Cenchrus purpurascens. Also known as Fountain Grass.

Coastal gardens often require clever solutions to protect plants from the fierce ocean winds. One solution is to use a white washed timber batten screen. The gaps in the screen allow some of the air to move through the screen, thereby minimising the turbulence that occurs with a solid fence. The white batten screens can be used as a design feature and provide contrast with grasses or Xanthorrhoea and Anigozanthos in the garden.


White timber batten screen - Reds Landscaping & Design
White timber batten screen.

Coastal garden plants have to endure salt spray, wind and often not very fertile sandy soils, so Lomandra is ideal for landscaping coastal gardens as it is a very hardy and drought resistant Australian native grass with attractive foliage.


The green lomandra makes a great contrast with this grey stone wall - Reds Landscaping & Design
The green lomandra mass planting makes a great contrast with this grey stone wall.


Lomandra plants - Reds Landscaping & Design
Lomandra plants being planted in a new coastal garden in Hampton.

Energy Saving Landscape Design

With the increasing price of energy a trend towards landscape design to reduce energy costs can be expected. This is where the landscape design makes use of deciduous trees to provide shade in summer and allow the sun's warming rays through in winter.


Energy saving Landscape Design
Energy saving Landscape Design with the use of deciduous trees.


Commercial Landscaping Design Trends

In the commercial landscaping of public spaces, the design trends are towards sustainability through the use of drought tolerant plants and the handling of rainwater through rain-gardens and permeable concrete. Modern public space design also requires a welcoming and accessible area where people can relax with a range of activities. As with residential landscape design, there is a strong trend towards outdoor entertaining areas where people can relax around a public barbecue.

Related Landscape Design News from Red's Landscaping Melbourne.

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Commercial Landscaping of Public Spaces.

© 2020 Reds Landscaping and Civil – Quality Melbourne Landscaper

More information on Landscape Design Styles and Plants

Red Hot Poker or Torch Lily

The Anduze Vase

Sustainable Landscape Design

How to study Landscape Architecture

Custom Swimming Pool Design of a Lap Pool

5 Top Custom Swimming Pool Designs.

The pool designs we are now seeing as the trend or fashion for residential swimming pools were once only seen in exclusive holiday resorts. Swimming pool construction using concrete offers a wide range of bespoke design possibilities that can even be designed to suit small gardens with odd shapes.  This is especially the case with the design of plunge pools, which are a great way to cool off after a day in the hot Melbourne sun.

Occasionally these swimming pool designs would be seen on Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, but rarely as a residential suburban swimming pool. This is especially the case with our first pool design trend, the infinity edge pool.


1.    Infinity Edge Pool Designs

The infinity edge pool design is so named as the edge of the pool is invisible to the eye and the pool appears to extend forever. The delineation between the water in the pool and the surrounding landscape features are difficult to discern. This pool design works brilliantly if the background landscape is a large body of water with which the pool water appears to blend.

Infinity edges swimming Pool designs
Infinity edges swimming Pool designs. The far edge of the pool blends in to the scenery.

2.   Lap Pool Designs

The lap pool design is ideal if you have a narrow garden and enjoy swimming for exercise.

The long narrow lap pool is generally designed to have a have a swimming length between 15 to 30 metres and a flat bottom with a depth of around 1.5 metres. The width of the swimming pool can vary between 2 metres wide to 5 metres wide.

Lap swimming pool designs go along luxury house
Lap swimming pool Designs are ideal for the sports enthusiast.

Using CAD landscape design, we can create an integrated landscape and pool design package to suit your home and show you how it will look from any angle.

Custom design lap pool Designs
A custom designed lap pool photo-realistic visualisation using landscape design tools.


3.    The Kidney Shaped Pool

The Kidney shaped pool design is ideal for a naturalistic landscaped garden. They are more a design for landscape aesthetic appeal rather than the serious lap swimmer. None the less, they are still a great pool for the kids to have fun and cool off in. the design of the kidney shaped pool has been credited to modernist landscape architect Thomas Church. Church was a pioneer of the landscape design style that became known as the “California Style”. People often associate this pool design with California and Palm Springs style and elegance.

Kidney shaped.
Kidney shaped pool designs are a statement of modernist landscape architecture.

The kidney shaped pool can be custom built to an almost limitless number of shapes, sizes and colours.

Blue Kidney Shaped pool designs
A Blue Kidney shaped pool with spa and waterfall.

4.    Beach Bench Swimming Pools

These pools are designed with a shallow ledge in part of the pool which is great for getting a tan whilst cooling off in the water. In fact this design style is also know as the “sun shelf” or “Tanning Ledge”. The ledges themselves can be free formed shapes or a geometric design to suit the pool. These can be circular, semi-circular or rectangular with rounded edges.

The ledges can be designed a little deeper for the placement of sun-lounges in the pool.

The ledges are also a great place for the supervised play of both dogs and children in the pool.

A shallow ledge for sun-lounges.
Swimming Pool design with a shallow ledge for sun-lounges.

The Beach Bench Design can also incorporate part of the swimming pool internal steps for ease of getting in and out of the pool. This design is also a good solution for people with mobility issues who might find getting in and out of the pool difficult.

Pool steps incorporating a swimming pool ledge.
Pool steps incorporating a swimming pool ledge for ease of getting in and out of the pool.

The swimming pool bench can be designed in to most pool shapes without too much difficulty.

Swimming pool bench
A swimming pool bench can be designed into most pool shapes.

5.    The Plunge Pool Designs.

A great pool for the small garden that still gives you a way to cool off after a day in the hot Melbourne sun. The plunge pool is a deep pool but with reduced length and width. Another advantage of the plunge pool is that they are a little cheaper to heat and maintain. They can also be custom designed to fit into an unusual or small space in your garden.

Plunge Pool.
The Plunge Pool Design often has stainless steel stairs to save space in a small garden.

Contact Us for Pool and Landscaping packages

Contact us to discuss a bespoke swimming pool design for your Melbourne Garden. 

We can show you how our CAD team can create a photorealistic custom swimming pool design or pool and landscaping packages for your home. Of course, a simple and quick design concept using sketchup is a great way to kickoff the design process. This is an ideal design tool for swimming pool designs.

Designing your Swimming Pool for afternoon shade

Using the 3D landscape design tools, the shadows of buildings can be factored into the design. If there is insufficient shade for the swimming pool, then a pergola can be added to the design. This is a much cheaper option than adding the pergola later.

pool and landscaping design. The view from the pergola.
The view from the pergola. Shade can be designed into the pool and landscaping package. Note the partial shade from the Pergola over the spa.

Putting it all together as a Pool and Landscaping Package

The pool and landscape design package can be brought together and presented as a virtual fly through for the client. This makes the overall client approval process much easier.



Our 3D design package will allow you to collaborate your design in real time with one of our senior landscape designers. Using some advanced software/hardware we can create immediate 3D renders. This allows visual assessment of the design from every viewpoint. It will let you see and understand how all the elements are intended to come together giving an instant serenity.

Our software can create an artificial sun and project light and heat on any given day or time. This ability to replicate the exact angle and temperature of the sun rays projecting on the building prior to construction is  why this package is the peoples favourite. With this amount of influence and control over your future outdoor space, it's easy to see how this package will drive confidence, clarity and transparency into the build and assure all trades and parties are moving towards the same goal.

Related Swimming Pool Landscaping ideas from Red's Landscaping Melbourne.

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Concrete Swimming Pool Construction and Design.


Eco Pools: Nature pools for the eco conscious


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© 2020 Reds Landscaping and Civil quality landscaping Melbourne


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