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Landscape Architects Career

Career Description

Plan and design land areas for projects such as parks and other recreational facilities, airports, highways, hospitals, schools, land subdivisions, and commercial, industrial, and residential sites.

What Job Titles Landscape Architects Might Have

  • Director of Landscape Architecture and Planning
  • Golf Course Architect
  • Land Planner
  • Landscape Architect

What Landscape Architects Do

  • Confer with clients, engineering personnel, or architects on landscape projects.
  • Prepare site plans, specifications, or cost estimates for land development.
  • Analyze data on conditions such as site location, drainage, or structure location for environmental reports or landscaping plans.
  • Develop marketing materials, proposals, or presentation to generate new work opportunities.
  • Inspect landscape work to ensure compliance with specifications, evaluate quality of materials or work, or advise clients or construction personnel.
  • Prepare graphic representations or drawings of proposed plans or designs.
  • Present project plans or designs to public stakeholders, such as government agencies or community groups.
  • Integrate existing land features or landscaping into designs.
  • Manage the work completed by subcontractors to ensure quality control.
  • Create landscapes that minimize water consumption such as by incorporating drought-resistant grasses or indigenous plants.
  • Collaborate with architects or related professionals on whole building design to maximize the aesthetic features of structures or surrounding land and to improve energy efficiency.
  • Research latest products, technology, or design trends to stay current in the field.
  • Inspect proposed sites to identify structural elements of land areas or other important site information, such as soil condition, existing landscaping, or the proximity of water management facilities.
  • Develop planting plans for clients to assist them to garden productively or achieve particular aesthetic effects.
  • Identify and select appropriate sustainable materials for use in landscape designs, such as using recycled wood or recycled concrete boards for structural elements or recycled tires for playground bedding.
  • Design and integrate rainwater harvesting or gray and reclaimed water systems to conserve water into building or land designs.
  • Collaborate with estimators to cost projects, create project plans, or coordinate bids from landscaping contractors.
  • Prepare conceptual drawings, graphics, or other visual representations of land areas to show predicted growth or development of land areas over time.
  • Provide follow-up consultations for clients to ensure landscape designs are maturing or developing as planned.

What Landscape Architects Should Be Good At

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Originality - The ability to come up with unusual or clever ideas about a given topic or situation, or to develop creative ways to solve a problem.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Fluency of Ideas - The ability to come up with a number of ideas about a topic (the number of ideas is important, not their quality, correctness, or creativity).
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.

What Landscape Architects Should Be Interested In

  • Artistic - Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
  • Investigative - Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

What Landscape Architects Need to Learn

  • Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
  • Building and Construction - Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Biology - Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
  • Geography - Knowledge of principles and methods for describing the features of land, sea, and air masses, including their physical characteristics, locations, interrelationships, and distribution of plant, animal, and human life.
  • Clerical - Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.
  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
Leaf iconThis career is a green occupation.
Median Salary: $63,480

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.