Building a Smart Estate: Tips for Energy Efficient Landscaping

Although you do not think of energy efficiency for your estate landscaping in the same way as, say, kitchen appliances, your backyard landscaping can put more money back in your pocket. Plus, there are products you can use to ensure your outdoor living space is as earth-friendly as possible. Thinking of having Lawrence Park Complete Garden Care tackle your upcoming landscape project? If so, why not have us incorporate these energy-efficient landscaping ideas for you?

Trees in the backyard

Harness the power of trees

Trees are beautiful, majestic, and alluring. When they’re properly positioned, they can also significantly reduce your home’s overall energy consumption:

  • A single tree in the right location can save up to 25% of the energy your house uses for heating and cooling.
  • Shady landscaping can make your backyard feel 6° cooler a yard that is fully exposed to the sun.
  • Shading your grass makes lawn care much easier, as tree-covered grass can be up to 25°C cooler sun-soaked natural stone.
  • Trees that are tall enough to shade the roof of your home can make your air conditioner 10% more efficient.
  • One shady tree has the same cooling power as 15 air conditioners; while three shade trees surrounding your home can cut your cooling bill by as much as 50%.

Trees are a staple of any landscape design. They can establish a border, create privacy, and be gathering areas for family and friends. They can also be big-time money-savers when the right trees are planted in the right locations.

Green Roof

Install a green roof

If you are planning to add external structures to your estate landscaping, such as:

  • Pool house.
  • Covered outdoor dining area.
  • Cabana.
  • Pergola or gazebo.
  • Children’s playhouse.
  • Garden shed.

A green roof can make your structure truly unique and be energy efficient at the same time.

Green roofs work by reducing energy consumption. During the summer/hotter months (when you are more likely to spend time outdoors), green roofs provide extra insulation and cooling.

Whenever it rains, green roofs release oxygen into the atmosphere. They also cut down on storm water run-off (water that would end up in conventional eaves troughs is absorbed by the roof instead).

Other benefits include:

  • Overall ambient temperature reduction by absorbing up to 50% of sunlight and reflecting away 30% of it.
  • Cuts down on noise pollution by acting as a sound barrier.
  • Green roofs can double or triple the lifespan of a roof. That is because the organic material protects conventional roofing materials (i.e. shingles) from heat, rain, wind, sun, etc.

Outdoor landscape lights

Use energy-efficient landscape lighting

When you turn on your landscape lights at night, you do not want to contribute or generate unnecessary light pollution.

Nor do you want to get an unpleasant surprise once your monthly hydro bill comes.

Eco-friendly bulbs and technology can help on both counts:


  • LED: These are 10 times more efficient than incandescent lights. Use LED bulbs to illuminate large estate landscaping areas or direct attention on smaller, more defined locations.
  • CFL: To get the most from your lights, install CFL bulbs that are rated for outdoor use only. These are 4 times more efficient than incandescent lights.


  • Sensors and timers: No wasted energy as sensors can turn on your lights once it gets dark outside (and not before) while timers lets you control when they shut off.
  • Solar lights: These lights do not impact your energy bill, nor do they require wiring. The free power of the sun charges these lights during the day and activates them at night.
  • Motion activation: When you are enjoying your property at night, these lights will stay on. Once you go inside and motion is no longer detected, they shut off.

Proper irrigation

Proper irrigation

Once your new energy-efficient landscaping features are in place, sprinkler systems can help with lawn care and garden care.

Of course, when that sprinkler system is designed and installed correctly, it minimizes water consumption while maximizing effectiveness.

If you’re thinking of just using the hose to water your property, this is why you should think again:

  • The average homeowner can use up to 50% of a home’s total water consumption for irrigation (and over-irrigation).
  • One of the biggest causes of water waste is misdirected hose water targeting areas which don’t require it, such as stonework, driveways, and walkways.
  • It is much easier to set and modify an irrigation schedule based on seasonal water needs of your front yard landscaping trying to guess/estimate using a hose.
  • A hose cannot water your landscaping while you are away on vacation. Should you return to a yellowed lawn, you will need to use more water to restore it to health.

Want beautiful, energy-efficient landscaping? Contact the LEED Certified team at Lawrence Park Complete Garden Care

Did you know Lawrence Park Complete Garden Care was Toronto’s FIRST Platinum LEED Canada Certified company?

This is what LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) means:

  • Our designs are water-efficient.
  • We use eco-friendly resources and materials.
  • Our plants are drought-tolerant (meaning they don’t require much water).

So, if environmental sustainability is an important aspect of your landscape design, we have got the experience and certification to deliver energy-efficient landscaping.

Contact us with your questions or comments. Or request a consultation  if you already have something in mind for your project.