Landscaping Architecture – “An Accessible Luxury”
Gardens are starting to play an ever important role in our lives, since we’re all caught in the dizzying rhythm of contemporaneity. As a consequence, we tried to find out from a landscaping specialist how Romanians relate to nature’s aesthetics and a field which seemed to be a whim many years ago, but which has evolved considerably. Landscaping doesn’t only solve functional problems of a property, but also enhances a family’s life, concluded Alexandru Gheorghe, a landscaping architect who owns Poteca Studio and gives away practical gardening tips on Amenajarigradini.blogspot.ro and Arhitectpeisagist.blogspot.ro.
The first natural question is if landscaping is still an option open only to those with hefty budgets, as it looks from the outside. “Landscaping is now an accessible luxury. It used to be seen as a strictly luxurious choice, it used to happen only at the palace, but now landscaping comes to solve many problems, such as water drainage, for instance. I have customers that call me to fix some problems, but I end up giving them aesthetic solutions as well, all within a reasonable budget. This is the role of a landscaper, to his job with a reasonable budget. So it all comes down to approach. It is true I have customers with huge budgets, but I also have ones with modest income”, he told us.
Are people becoming more interested in the natural beauty? “People are aware of aesthetics when they are given the chance to admire it. I have been a landscaping architect for nine years now. I could say landscaping used to be a whim back then because this is how the magazines presented it. But nowadays we are trying to present it as a necessary, not optional job. There are landscapers who come and take care of a lawn. But others, the designers, I tend to believe I am one of them, come and add personality to a garden, analyze a family and their habits, the surrounding environment, the impact of a project on it and the people’s lives”, he further explained.
But beyond the aesthetics and functionality, landscaping comes to inject harmony into a family’s life. “I believe that, apart from the functional solutions it brings, landscaping also betters a family life. For instance, if I want to put water into a landscape, I just tell my customers to reminisce the romantic moments they spent on the seaside when they were young. And the customers understand that my project can break a bit of their beautiful memories and transfer it into their garden. It is now a cliché to say that garden means relaxation, it is logical, this is nature’s very role. But it can also be a context for beautiful memories and quality time spent with the family and friends, in an equally quality environment. An environment that represents you, makes you feel more than welcome, sort of being on your personal vacation”, Alexandru Gheorghe added.
Landscaping is strongly connected to anything that happens on the real estate market. “What happens on the real estate market directly impact the landscaping field. For instance, we are witnessing a trend of migration from Bucharest’s vicinities back into the city. So I am now being hired to decorate small gardens. But as those large properties outside are being freed, I am also doing big projects, such as lake side landscaping. Last year, I did a lot of projects for rugged terrains. So everything changes from year to year. One year all I did was setting up beaches, on the seaside”, he further said.
But landscaping doesn’t only come down to decorating a garden, since nature’s joy can be found in simpler things, too. “I also put some natural green on the inside as well, designing with moss and lichens. Many of my age (31) bought apartments and call me to help them personalize those small spaces since they have no garden, but a small terrace, and ask me to make the best of that tiny space to substitute for the garden”, he concluded.