Thinking of hiring a professional to landscape your garden? While carrying out some online research to find a company near you, you may well have come across a variety of terms used by different landscaping companies. In particular, you will find five terms in common use in the UK: landscape gardener, landscape architect, landscape designer, landscaper and garden designer.

This article looks at all five of these in turn, looking at the nuances of what each term implies in terms of skills and focus.

Landscape Gardener – Click here to see our full range of services in the Chelmsford, Essex areas.

Landscape Designer

With a landscape designer, the focus is on the design of the garden and achieving an overall effect through the placement of natural and manmade features, such as ponds, pathways, fountains, sculptures, hedging, flower beds and so on. It might not necessarily involve the practical elements of completing the garden in its entirety: the design of the garden may be handed to a contractor for completion.

Landscape Architect

With a landscape architect, the focus is more on the garden structures and how they affect the overall design. Landscape architects look at the following:

  • How the garden and buildings work together,
  • The use of built structures within the garden to create practical features,
  • The choice of materials, and,
  • How to achieve a particular effect.

The role is especially appropriate when the design incorporates large structures or sculptures which require engineering expertise (e.g. for safety purposes and to ensure that load bearing requirements are met). In most circumstances, in order to describe yourself as a ‘landscape architect’ you would need to hold a degree level qualification and perhaps other formal qualifications. Although a landscape architect can work on the gardens of private homes, they will usually work on larger projects, which will often commercial or municipal, such as a new housing estate or business park.

Garden Designer

Modern garden design can encompass the full range of built and natural elements, but the focus is more on planting and the horticultural side (flower beds, shrubs and greenery for example). Again, the primary concern is generally on design, with the completion often carried out by a contractor.


A landscaper is typically the person who carries out all the physical build elements of a garden landscaping project, such as moving the earth, laying turf, creating flower beds and laying paving. The landscaper may not be the garden designer, but instead may be a landscape contractor.

Landscape Gardener

This is the most commonly used term nowadays, and the preferred term for our work here at the Constant Gardener. It combines the horticultural and structural elements together and closely describes how we work. However, here at Constant Gardener, we also put a strong emphasis on the design of an outdoor space, paying careful attention to ensuring that a client is happy with our approach before we start building. Our work includes both garden design and build.

In practice, these terms are sometimes used interchangeably to mean roughly the same thing: a specialist with the ability to combine suitable planting with built structures to achieve a garden which is beautiful to look at, and be in, as well as providing the practical amenities required by its owners.

Landscape Gardening by the Constant Gardener

At the Constant Gardener, we will design any outdoor space – small or large – and transform it in a way that will suit your requirements. As well as traditional garden design, we also create striking modern and contemporary gardens or low maintenance outside spaces for both homes and businesses in the Essex area, including landscape gardening in Chelmsford, Braintree, Brentwood, Boreham, Great and Little Baddow, Great Dunmow, Witham, Ingatestone and Maldon.

The Constant Gardener – Click here to find out how we can transform your outdoor space.