There is such a variety of well-executed residential landscape designs, it is difficult (and arbitrary) to cite one as being superlative. However, each of the following projects deals well with a particular design element and serves as a model for executing traditional landscape practices.
Klahn + Singer + Partner
This garden in Karlsruhe, Germany, fashions a unique, sculptural take on the traditional cabinet or hedgerow. The forms within the enclosure are both geometric and biomorphic and equally pleasurable when viewed from above or below. The garden changes through the seasons, with the deciduous plants contrasting against the evergreens in the fall. The sculptured forms create visual interest in the winter, when they are covered in snow.
Lutsko Associates found a way to integrate and highlight strategic native planting within this open grassland. Stepped terraces delineate the space and emphasize the house in relation to the surrounding land, giving the composition a natural yet structured feel.
Courtyard Water Feature:
Charles Anderson Landscape Architecture
The urban context and limited area called for an integration of natural space within the interior of the Seattle home. Anderson put a water feature in the passage between the garage and the back door. Metal grating spans the water feature—–which is planted with giant horsetail, skunk cabbage, and slough sedge—–and is well integrated with the surrounding hardscape.
Best Housing Development:
VHP Urban Designers + Architects + Landscape Architects BV
Piekenhoef, The Netherlands
The Piekenhoef housing development lies at the boundary between the low-lying Maas river valley and the Aeolian sand ridges of Brabant. VHP’s design takes into account the delicate ecosystem of the site. Rainwater runoff and detention systems form the starting point. VHP designed five “wadis,” wide, grassy infiltration trenches that run through the residential area and allow runoff to percolate into the subsoil. They also establish a clear relation between the residential context and the surrounding landscape, and between the village and the forest.