Earthworks and topsoil in relation to structures
Any sort of development that involves change to the surface of the Earth—whether roads, paths, pools, parking lots, or buildings—changes the natural lay of the land. The essence of landscape architecture is to ensure that such grading and earthworks fit in with the land and its ecology. Grading should be in sympathy with a natural setting. This is particularly crucial on sloping and hilly ground, but also applies in flat landscapes. However, this does not necessarily mean that the ground should follow the serpentine curves of the English Picturesque garden; it is also possible for formal features to respect the landscape.