California Architects

Newsletter Logo for California Architects

2018 Edition, Issue 3


A Publication of the California Architects Board ■ Public Protection Through Examination, Licensure, and Regulation

Landscape Architecture Scope of Practice

Landscape Architects are licensed by the California Landscape Architects Technical Committee (LATC), which operates under the purview of the California Architects Board. Business and Professions Code (BPC) section 5615, within the Landscape Architects Practice Act (Act), defines the practice of landscape architecture as a professional service of landscape preservation, development, and enhancement inclusive of consultation, investigation, reconnaissance, research, planning, design, preparation of drawings, construction documents and specifications, and responsible construction observation. Only persons licensed as a landscape architect may use the title "landscape architect" or advertise themselves to provide landscape architectural services in California.

Landscape architects offer an essential array of talent and expertise to develop and implement solutions for the built and natural environment. Based on environmental, physical, social, and economic considerations, landscape architects produce overall guidelines, reports, master plans, conceptual plans, construction contract documents, and construction oversight for landscape projects that create a balance between the needs and wants of people and the limitations of the environment. The decisions and performance of landscape architects affect the health, safety, and welfare of the client, as well as the public and environment.

Architectural Exterior
Architectural Exterior

It is noteworthy that the Act does provide exceptions and exemptions to the scope of practice of a landscape architect. For example, BPC section 5641.3 grants exemptions to licensed architects, professional engineers, and land surveyors with regard to scope of practice. However, these exceptions and exemptions do not permit anyone but a licensed landscape architect to use the professional title, "landscape architect".

For more information about a landscape architect’s scope of practice, you may refer to the Act. If you have any questions about the scope of practice of a landscape architect, please visit the LATC’s website or contact the LATC at 916-575-7230 or email.

For additional information about exemptions or the practice of professions related to landscape design services, you can refer to the LATC’s "Permitted Practices in California" document.