What Training Is Needed for a Residential Landscape Design Career?

Residential landscape designers design gardens and lawns for owners of private property. They must have knowledge of art, design, technology, horticulture, and business. Their work experience can be a platform for a career in larger-scale landscape architecture. Review the training required for jobs in landscape design here. Schools offering Landscape Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Overview

If you're interested in pursuing a career in residential landscape design, you should earn a bachelor's or master's degree and complete an internship or apprenticeship. After a few years of experience, residential landscape designers commonly start their own companies, since residential landscaping is generally a small-scale enterprise.

Important Facts about this Occupation

Median PayThe median annual pay for landscape architects in 2014 was $64,570.
Job OutlookEmployment of landscape architects is predicted to increase by 14% by the year 2022, which is about the average for all occupations.
Key SkillsCreativity, visualization skills, problem-solving, communication, technical skills
Similar OccupationsArchitects, Civil Engineers, Cartographers, Surveyors, Urban and Regional Planners

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Formal Education

To work for an established residential landscape design company, you usually need a degree. Schools offer associate's, bachelor's, and master's degree programs in landscape design. These typically feature courses in art, design, construction, history, and science, with a concentration in courses like landscape ecology, surveying, and site design.


Most residential landscape design companies prefer applicants who have already done an internship or apprenticeship while earning their degree in landscape architecture or design. Interns acquire skills like drafting with computer-aided design software, and they learn about the business practices of landscape design.


Those with experience in residential landscape design are well-prepared to enter the often more lucrative field of landscape architecture. To do this, you need to earn either a bachelor's or master's degree in landscape architecture, then pass the landscape architecture registration examination to be certified. In order to qualify to take the test in most states, you must have a degree in landscape architecture and at least one year of work experience, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, www.bls.gov). Some states also require an additional test that covers material unique to the landscaping concerns of that state.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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