Fundamentals of Landscape Design
Image by F. Muhammad from Pixabay
Landscape Design

Fundamentals of Landscape Design


Landscape Architecture 101 – Fundamentals of Landscape Design is a strategic and bibliographic research guide to UC Berkeley library and web resources for UCB students taking LA 101. Here you’ll find research techniques and sources for your precedent study. For additional assistance, please consult the Environmental Design Library reference staff, 210 Wurster Hall.


DECONSTRUCT your precedent to uncover its complexities, to focus your research, and to increase your search vocabulary (for example, the more ways you have of describing and thinking about your precedent, the more likely you are to find a plan or section). Add to your ‘deconstruction notes’ as you learn more about your precedent.

Do your best to answer these questions. Remember to include alternative spellings or variant names.
Example: Olmsted or Olmstead; parc or park or parque; Nationsbank or Nations Bank or National Bank

  • Write down your precedent.
    Example: Golden Gate Park
  • Ask the 6 journalist’s questions about your chosen precedent: Who?, What?, Where?, When?, Why?, How?
    Who designed it? / Who built it? / Who paid for it? / Who were the intended users?
    What kind of park is it? / What were the design constraints?
    Where is it located? (city, state, neighborhood, country)
    When was it built? (date completed, century)
    Why was it designed?
    How did the city approve the project?
  • Pay attention to the questions you can’t answer about your precedent. Look for for the answers in the specialized reference sources in the following section.