10 Popular Garden Landscape Styles to Create Your Dream Oasis

A green patch or two in the barren backyard of your home is inevitably calming. At the end of a weary day, some solitary time among the greens is the perfect way to unwind. You’re mistaken if you think that’s all a garden is capable of.

Landscaping can significantly change the experience of your home. It embellishes the way it looks and enriches the way it feels. With some planning and purpose, your garden can become the favourite spot in the design in no time.

Choosing a garden landscape style can be overwhelming if it’s your first time. Keeping a few things in mind before making a final choice will not only save you time but also help in designing an efficient landscape. The use of space should be the first determinant when choosing. You can give the garden the feel you want by deciding whether it will be your cosy space for entertainment, playing, or simply relaxing.

The climate you’re designing in will lay down several guidelines as to what’s sustainable. Knowing the soil type should also be part of your study if you want your planting to survive. Finally, take care to include your own house in this process. The architectural style of the immediate built environment can serve as a reference to help choose a style that exists in harmony with its surroundings.

To make things easier, here is a list of some popular garden landscape styles that certainly won’t disappoint.

10 Popular Garden Landscape Styles To Choose From

Beautiful Garden Landscape
  1. Tropical Style Garden
  2. Desert-Style Garden
  3. Japanese-Inspired Garden
  4. Woodland-Style Garden
  5. Manicured-Style Garden
  6. Prairie-Style Garden
  7. Cottage-Style Garden
  8. Contemporary Minimal Style Garden
  9. Coastal Style Garden
  10. Topiary-Style Garden

Let’s have a detailed look-

01. Tropical-Style Garden

Tropical Style Garden

Why fly to a faraway island when you can enjoy a tropical vacation right in the backyard of your home? Tropical-style gardens with their exotic plants and vivacious foliage make for luxurious escapes in sultry settings. Although they thrive best in warmer temperatures, in colder regions, these gardens can stand out in a short growing season with lush growth.

Plants in tropical-style gardens survive on moisture. Hence, the trick is to complement the lavish greens with a water feature in the design. A fountain, swimming pool, garden pond, or water garden can add the missing tropical glow.

Play with varying foliage and colours to create an organic look. Layered planting, raised beds, and bright blooms work well in these gardens. Opt for taller plants like tree ferns or palms together with low-lying plant species like Phormium tenax and vibrant flowering kinds like trumpet vines for best results. Accentuate this equatorial getaway with a hammock under the canopy and tiki statues. Don’t forget to add lights for the relaxing evening hours.

02. Desert-Style Garden

Desert Style Garden

Desert landscapes are from the typical notion of a drab and dreary scenery. If you’re looking for a low-maintenance alternative, then desert-style gardens are a perfect choice. With its dramatic plants, this style looks like a setup for a movie. These succulents perform well in sunny locations with well-drained soil. Owing to their water-storing capacity, these plant species can also survive drought.

Other than the traditional additions like cacti and yucca, experiment with taller varieties like acacia for shade and coloured species like a begonia. Layer small and big plants with different textures to achieve more depth. Big rocks can add a sculptural dimension to the desert-style garden, but remember to control the number and size for a balanced composition.

Establish a flow of movement with serpentine paths and curved bed lines. Container plants work well in this landscape style. Another trick is to replace grass with gravel for ground cover. Gravel will not only form a unifying plant bed but also allow better rainwater percolation into the soil.

03. Japanese-Inspired Garden

Japanese Inspired Garden

Simplicity, minimalism, and spirituality are the three traits that co-exist in perfect unison in a Japanese-inspired garden. There are various types of Japanese gardens, classified according to their function and elements. In any type, Japanese landscapes place a lot of emphasis on the symbolism of natural elements.

A koi pond, reflective pool, or garden fountain are fine ways to incorporate water. The water features traditionally symbolise oceans or mountain streams. Hence, make sure they are asymmetric and surrounded by natural elements like plants and stones.

Subtle contrasts and textures define the shaded spots of the Japanese-inspired gardens, such as a combination of host grass and Hakone grass. Here, trees are more sculptural than natural; they are pruned to reveal their branching pattern, which defines the composition of the space. Stone lanterns and bamboo fences are also some typical elements worth trying. If space permits, don’t mind adding an island and a bridge.

04. Woodland-Style Garden

Woodland Style Garden

If you’ve spent enough time wondering what to do with the trees and unused wooded areas, consider turning your yard into a woodland-style garden with almost no effort. The key to creating this style is taking cues from your immediate surroundings. Leave the trees and shrubs as they are to grow and spread in their own time.

Native species are the best choice if you want to avoid constant maintenance. For ground cover, choose plants that can thrive in the dappled sunlight under the dense canopies. Mahonia, ferns, hostas, violets, and daffodils are some woodland plants you can consider. Work in a sequence from trees to the understory to create an effective layering effect.

Bid farewell to straight paths because in woodland-style gardens winding paths dominate. You can use stone or brick for the paving, or just leave it exposed. Quaint elements like a wooden bench, birdhouses, and scattered gnomes will help you create the perfect woodland feel.

05. Manicured-Style Garden

Manicured Style Garden

Straight lines, clean garden edges, and regular planting dominate the manicured-style gardens. They’re all about perfectly trimmed lawns and square hedges, which almost look artificial for being so precise. In contemporary spaces, they might look a little boring, but they have to offer more than a royal appearance.

You can delineate different functions in the same garden space using the structure of manicured gardens. This is where the pristine geometries come into use. Every space can be assigned a unique feature of its own to distinguish it and simultaneously become a part of the overall garden design through uniform planting.

Use multiple rectangles to break the lawn into stepping stones. The ground covers, like gravel or trimmed grass, define these areas. Another part of the garden can house a small seating area and a pool of water. With manicured hedges, you can also create some cosy private corners in your yard.

06. Prairie Style Garden

Prairie Style Garden

Fewer trees and more land make a beautiful combination, only in the prairie-style garden. It became popular in the early twentieth century and boasts openness, horizontality, and connection with the infinite sky. These garden landscape styles have now adapted to various environments, cold or warm, and different soil depths.

The use of horizontal lines is a fundamental practice in this style. Hence, stratified planting with trees branching out horizontally should be implemented in these landscapes. Use a combination of trees that frame views around the periphery and tall grasses like switch grass to recreate the traditional prairie feel.

While designing the prairie-style garden, avoid being strict with plants by clustering them neatly. Let them loose. You can incorporate small water features and structural elements using native stone that complements your plants. A limestone planting bed or seating will be a good choice for creating that sense of place. Amidst the green grass, sprinkle some colours with plants like coneflower or Russian sage.

07. Cottage-Style Garden

Cottage Style Garden

Like the enchanted land in a children’s book, cottage style gardens are romantic escapes full of life and exuberance. They are an absolute contradiction to formal gardens and may seem a little out of hand, but with a few simple rules, you can craft them into the perfect natural retreat you’re looking for.

Curved paths and abundant plant clusters are key features of a cottage garden. The soil should be able to support the number of plants; therefore, make sure to add compost annually. There are no rules for colours. Use your freedom to combine comforting pastels with intense reds and oranges to achieve a wholesome look.

Contrasting heights, small trees like hydrangea, and flowering plants like roses and peonies with multiple petals make the cottage style a success. Some props include a small fence or an iron gate that creates an enclosure. Painted wooden furniture or a vine-clad trellis will give you the cottage-style garden of your dreams.

08. Contemporary Minimal Style Garden

Contemporary Minimal Style Garden

To complement the minimal architecture of houses, contemporary gardens are becoming increasingly popular. Contrary to their name, minimal gardens can be quite powerful if designed well. Most often, homes with smaller backyards opt for this style to give themselves a mini escape in the middle of buzzing city life.

The trick to a successful minimal garden is using foliage and texture instead of massing and striking specimens. Defined edges with steps, raised beds, and platforms work well in this garden landscape style. You can use subtle natural textures like limestone, wood, or granite. Planting a mix of deciduous trees like birch and ornamental grasses like deschampsia can give the garden enough character.

For a perennial effect, bamboo, pine, or box planters should be your choices. Considering the number of plants will be fewer, the choice of plants and their placement will determine the result.

09. Coastal-Style Garden

Coastal Style Garden

The coastal-style garden celebrates natural textures and weathered appearances. The essential thing to remember while planning a coastal garden is the choice of plants. If located by the ocean, choose plants that can withstand the salt and wind. Taking inspiration from the coast itself, incorporate broad sweeps of coastal plants that will introduce colour and movement in the design.

Use native materials for the hardscape and rocks to achieve an organic coastal look. To withstand the oceanic winds, a wind barrier of trees and shrubs should be enough. Raised plant beds can be useful while dealing with poor coastal soil conditions.

For a natural feel, let the plants rest on a bed of gravel. Finally, some decking and seating areas are the last few things to consider and add to complete a coastal backyard.

10. Topiary-Style Garden

Topiary Style Garden

There’s little to say about the topiary-style garden because it clearly prefers speaking for itself. If you are willing to undertake an adventure, the topiary garden should be next on your list. Topiary is an art. Use your imagination and create shapes out of evergreen species like European box or privet.

Cubes are simpler to execute, but shapes can range from a dome to a cone or anything else that you are brave enough to try. To be safe, repetition and symmetry typically find use in this style. There’s a lot to do with a topiary-style garden, but the most important tools here are patience and practice.


We may have only mentioned 10 garden landscape styles, but there are plenty more to know and experiment with. Each style has a charm of its own and a unique set of advantages. The real guide here is knowing your needs and lifestyle to create a space that resonates with your aesthetics, surroundings, and climate. For anything else, we are always ready to help.

Before leaving this page, we recommend exploring the landscaping tips below to save money while creating your fantasy retreat.

10 Landscaping Tips for Your Home Garden That Can Save You Money!

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Brickly – Sakshi – Sakshi navigates the corporate world by day, and transforms into a wordsmith by night, bridging the gap between spaces and stories. Occasional travel and regular reading are her muse. Her LinkedIn following, a vibrant community of around 12k kindred spirits, emboldens her to continue this enriching exchange of ideas.

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