how much does landscaping cost - garden landscaping

How much does landscaping cost?

It’s more than you think and we want to help you understand why?

Landscaping is the planning, design and construction of outdoor spaces to enhance their appearance and functionality.

A beautiful, well designed outdoor space can enhance the emotional connection to the home, add street appeal and ultimately, increase the value of the property. But, how much does landscaping cost?

We are no strangers to raised eyebrows when issuing our cost estimates, so stay tuned to hear our logic behind the numbers!

There are many factors that influence the actual price of your landscaping project, given the wide range of what the job may involve. Pricing components take into consideration;

  • the complexity of the job
  • the size of the project
  • the site location and condition
  • features required
  • plants choices (type and size)
  • material selections

All of these variants make it difficult to put a general cost of landscaping together as each project needs to be quoted on the specifics for that individual job.

Luke spends a lot of time putting his costings together for you – just like building a house, it’s complex and this process does take a while!

Below, we will break down some of the key elements for consideration when landscaping in the Blue Mountains, Sydney, NSW to help you understand what is involved and where your costs are incurred, to enable a realistic landscaping budget to be set. These guidelines are based on a standard sized block with BASIC landscaping plans (no pools, outdoor kitchens etc) for the front and back outdoor spaces, and also assume using a professional landscaper (as opposed to DIY) for the entire project. Larger block sizes or sloping sites obviously will be more involved and have higher cost inclusions to deliver desired results (think excavation, retaining walls, stairs, split levels) all of which need to be safe and secure and compliant with local Council regulations.

cost of landscaping, landscape plans

What factors affect landscaping cost? 


One way of calculating a rough budget expectation for landscaping, we tell our clients, is to factor in around 10-15% of your home’s current value for front and backyard (not building cost, the current VALUE of the property). For example, if your home is currently valued at $900,000, then we’d recommend a landscaping budget of $90,000 to $135,000 to be appropriate.

The primary factors that affect your project’s costs are the site location and condition, features you have selected to include in your landscape design, the plants selection and how established these are and the quality of materials chosen to complete the project.

Every property is different with its landscaping requirements and so is each homeowner’s vision for their outdoor spaces. Several variables will influence landscaping prices. Below are some of the most common factors that will affect the cost of landscaping your project.

A landscaping project can cost anywhere from $25,000 to over $200,000 depending on if you are working on one small specific area or if you are landscaping the whole property. Keep in mind that investing in professional residential landscaping will significantly add to the value of your home as well as giving you a beautiful space to live in.

Landscape Design Plans 

The design of your home’s landscape plans covers several details. This includes: 

  • The size of your outdoor space
  • The scope of the landscaping project (e.g. specific element or area, only front garden, only backyard or whole property transformation)
  • The complexity of your landscape design
  • Site location and condition (This will affect site preparation – a sloping block will add extra costs in excavation, retaining walls for split levels, stairs etc)
  • Your climate (suitable plants for specific climate and garden locations)
  • Your personal design preferences (features and material selections)

How much does landscaping cost? 

All of these components will affect how much you’ll ultimately spend on your landscaping project. Here’s a breakdown of the elements of a landscaping project, what’s involved, what you need to consider, what things add extra costs and things you can do to save some money.


How fertile is your property’s soil? If you’re landscaping a new build, the soil left onsite might not be suitable for growing plants and shrubs. You would be advised to test the soil and you may need to add nutrients to improve it before landscaping to give your plants and lawn the best chance of thriving.


The term “softscaping” refers to the vegetation elements of your design (e.g. trees, plants, lawns). The types, number and size of the trees and plants you add to your landscaping will directly affect how much you invest in this area, as well as the level of maintenance required on completion of the project.


Hardscaping, refers to the man-made structural features used in your landscaping. This includes anything that’s made of hard materials (e.g. wood, stone, concrete). Examples of hardscapes include driveways, paths, retaining walls, and fences. Material selections for these elements will impact project costs.


Landscaping cost will vary depending on where you live and on the site location. If a sloping block, this will add extra costs in excavation to make usable levels, installing stairs etc to provide functioning spaces. 

Outdoor kitchen cost 

The size of the outdoor kitchen will impact the cost as well as the construction materials you select and the quality of appliances you want to be installed. Other factors that will affect the outdoor kitchen costs are; the power source (i.e. whether it runs off the house utilities or a new connection is needed).

pool landscaping, deck and pavers

Pool cost 

The traditional in-ground swimming pool is often the most expensive feature of a new landscape, but pools can vary in construction costs. Factors that will affect the price of your pool and surrounding landscaping include; pool depth, interior finish, lining, lighting and any special features such as rocks or water features.

Decking cost 

The cost of your deck will vary depending on the materials you choose and the size and design of the structure, and the formwork required. If your deck design is anything other than a standard straight edged design, then you will pay more for unusual shapes or patterns. Other factors that will change the cost of your deck include your choice of timber, composite decking range selection, type of railings, overall size, and associated substructure.

Paving cost 

Every landscape design is unique and varied with its paving requirements. The selected paving materials, the intricacy of the design and the amount of soil preparation required to support the pavers as well as the installation costs are all factors in how much this will add to the overall landscaping budget. 

Driveway/carport cost 

Factors that will affect the cost of the driveway and carport component of your landscaping include any slopes, curves, drainage, intricate patterns, and grading required. The size of the driveway or carport, the construction materials selected and the labour required for installation of these, all make up the cost for these two elements of your landscaping plan.

Patio/pergolas cost 

Pergolas and patios vary in cost due to the differences in size, design, material costs, and the labour required to install them. The flooring material selections underneath these structures will likely be the largest expense, and these costs can vary considerably. If you have larger areas to cover or wish to include a full roof rather than an open-roof design, this will all add additional costs.

Lawn cost 

There are a few ways to lay lawn for your home; hand-seeding, hydroseeding, turf, and artificial turf and these all vary greatly in installation and ongoing cost. A hand-seeded lawn is the cheapest option but does require good weather and time to get established. Hand-seeded lawns need a lot of love initially but ultimately end up being very hardy. If using turf, the variety selected will dictate the overall cost for this option. Also consider the current growing conditions for the turf farms – the recent weather and floods have devastated our local turf farms. An increase in turf prices is inevitable in this situation as supply will be low, as compared to market demand. Artificial turf could be a consideration for areas in the garden that are difficult to naturally grow lawn and pricing will vary depending on selections.

Sprinklers cost 

The primary factors that affect the cost of installing a sprinkler system include your soil and how much preparation work is required, the slope of the site, the quality of materials, the area size to be covered, your site’s water-pressure and whether you install your sprinkler system at the same time as your new landscape or retrospectively (easier to do at the time of landscaping and generally more cost effective to do at this time).

Fences/ Retaining wall cost 

Your site location and starting condition (how much preparation work is required) will to a certain extent determine what is required with regards to fencing and retaining walls. Also, the way in which you wish to use your outdoor spaces will have a big impact on the plans for fencing and retaining walls in your landscape design project.

Council have regulations on heights also, so a council plan and approval may be required in some instances.

landscaping costs retaining walls

There is a wide variety of materials available for fencing and retaining walls and your selections here will play a large role in the overall costs of these components. Other factors that affect the cost of a fence/retaining wall if you are on a sloping site are: what excavation is required, what structural work is needed to ensure safety and compliance, is there a need for a series of stair cases to get between site levels and ultimately the materials selected to provide the desired finished result.

Outdoor Lighting 

Garden lighting is used for safety when outdoors at night but it is also a beautiful way to highlight your landscaped areas and plants. Factors that add to the costs of installing outdoor lighting are: if additional power sources need to be installed externally and wires need to be run with associated trenches dug, whether you install at the time of landscaping or retrospectively, the quality of the fixtures selected, any timing systems required to automatically operate the light settings and the installation required.

Plants Cost 

Selecting the right plants for the climate and the area they will be planted are an essential component of any garden. The cost will vary greatly depending on the type and number of plants you need. Logic tells us to choose low-maintenance plants and species that are well suited to the local climate but you may have a theme in mind and plant selections can be made for this, so long as the growing conditions are suitable in your area.

How established the plants are will also determine how much you spend on these. The larger, more advanced plants will cost you more and give a more instant impact in your outdoor spaces,

How to reduce your landscaping costs 

Like any big investment, landscaping is one of those things that we need done right for safety and longevity as we want to get value for our money and be able to enjoy our outdoor spaces for many years. There are ways that you can shave some costs from your landscaping project. Here are a few things to consider if you need to meet your budget, you could:

  • Look to reduce the design features in your landscape plan, and stick to the basics
  • Consider doing the landscaping project in multiple stages, as your budget allows
  • Select lower cost materials where practical (your landscaper can advise on options)
  • Buy smaller, less established plants (less impact initially but same end result with correct maintenance)

Great idea to also get in touch with your local real estate agent to advise on the value landscaping would add to your property specifically. If you are looking at spending $100,000 in landscaping to makeover your $900K property – will this increase the property value to over $1m afterwards? They will know!

So, to answer the question “How much does landscaping cost?” the best way to determine the overall cost of your landscaping plans is to have an initial free consultation with Luke so a quote can be prepared. Contact Luke or get in touch with us on Facebook.

Please provide us with information about your landscaping requirements so we can contact you to arrange a suitable consultation time.

Landscaping Enquiry

We have availability to start new construction work within 2-months. Kindly confirm this timeline will suit you

What are you hoping to spend on your landscaping project?

For larger projects we always recommend having a landscape design drawn up, so we are all on the same page. Have you engaged a landscape designer as yet?

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