It is always important to know your garden's purpose, because how you intend to use it will determine what is designed.  This checklist is meant as a guide.  Your answers to these questions will be very helpful for both you and your landscape designer
  • What is the main purpose of your garden?
    • Designed to sell?
    • Outdoor dining/entertaining - how often and how many people?
    • Meditation/contemplation?
    • Hobbies - what types?
    • Games/sports - what kinds?
  • Do you intend to spend time in the garden and if so when?  What time during the day?  When the sun is out or at night?
  • Do you prefer open exposed spaces or enclosed sheltered area?
  • How would you like to move through your space?
  • Does the garden get sunlight between 9am to noon, noon to 3pm or after 3pm?
  • What is the home's architecture like?  Are there any architectural elements that might look nice repeated in your garden?
  • What is your favorite color?
  •  Are there any landscape elements that you like?
  • Are there any landscape elements that you dislike?
  • Are there any landscape elements that you would like to keep?
  • What do you like least about your home's exterior space right now?
  • Do you have any HOA restrictions?
  • How much are you willing to allot for the creation and maintenance of you garden?
  • Will the design be done by you or are you going to hire a landscape designer (recommended)?
  • Will the installation be done by you or are you going to hire a licensed landscape contractor (recommended)?
  • What is your budget?
One suggestion is to look at magazines for ideas and cut out what draws your eye and make a little scrap book.