Has anyone used landscape design software? I am considering several programs but want one that allows me to choose the specific trees and shrubs I want to use in my landscape. Some of what I want to use are not considered common so I want to purchase software with a robust set of trees and shrubs from which to choose. Any experience?
If you've got less common types of things, I think you'll have a hard time finding software that has the plants you want. Some programs have better lists than others, but none of them are going to include uncommon plants. There was a series of articles here on DG a while ago about the pros & cons of different software programs--they're the first 4 articles listed on this search page http://davesgarden.com/guides/articles/search.php?q=software&submit=Search+articles
I use Realtime Landscaping Pro 5...database of over 30K plants, even has containers, arbors, mulch, grass,rock, hardscape items etc..import your photo and mock up everything...creates a buying list for you to go by once you are done...I've enjoyed it, user friendly, easy to learn
I cant think of any program / software that covers everything one wants while planning our gardens, however, the friend I know who have used this design program have been able to adapt either design details, plants, trees etc and just add there own names to the shopping lists, sizes, colours etc, as far as I know, these programs only give you guidelines, hints, ideas information etc and at the end, you still need to adapt to your own needs. hope you find something that will help you out, I always end up sketching on paper with my own measurements, it works because I can use tracing paper and place this over the measured area I want to plan, I did find some of these software programs expensive and too complicated for an amateurs gardener so look carefully before you spend money on them, I would think some books are available that would help you plant and lay out a garden, I've used them in part myself and they can be read in bed, on the porch or where ever you have the time to open the page.
Good Luck anyway, hope you Can find what you need. WeeNel.