Garden and landscape design, the development and decorative planting of gardens, yards, grounds, parks, and other types of areas. Garden and landscape design are used to enhance the settings for buildings and public areas and recreational areas and parks. It is one of the decorative arts and is allied to architecture, city planning, and horticulture.
The vegetated landscape that covered most of the Earth’s continents before humans began to build still surrounds and penetrates even the largest metropolises. Efforts to design gardens and to preserve and develop green open space in and around cities are efforts to maintain contact with the original pastoral, rural landscape. Gardens and designed landscapes, by filling the open areas in cities, create continuity in space between structural urban landscapes and the open rural landscapes beyond. Moreover, gardens and designed landscapes have a special type of continuity in time. Buildings, paintings, and sculptures may survive longer than specific plants, but the constant cyclical growth and change in plants provide a continuous-time dimension that static structures and sculpture can never achieve.