By the Division of Professional Licensure

Board of Registration of Landscape Architects

Landscape architects provide services to consumers as defined by the statutes and described in the regulations. The Board of Registration of Landscape Architects protects the public through regulation of the practice and the title of Landscape Architect in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in accordance with the statutes.

Each board of registration administers and enforces its regulations regarding licensing requirements. The boards receive, investigate and adjudicate complaints against the respective licensed practitioners.

Landscape Architects

Landscape architects design the outdoor spaces in which people live, work and play. They design and plan areas as small as private gardens and as large as entire cities. Their goal is to create environments that are beautiful, functional and in harmony with ecological principles. Landscape architects must understand the design process, plant and soil science, ecology, construction practices, engineering principles, and environmental psychology. This range of knowledge is essential to the landscape architect's task of shaping and protecting the outdoor environment to accommodate the work and recreational activities of people.

When Would I Need a Landscape Architect?

The planning of the use of property is as important as the design and function of a building. Landscape Architects are trained and have the experience to work out the problems of a site to best meet the functions as outlined by the consumer.

Anyone who has property, or wants to purchase property, that has unusual problems such as drainage, grading, wind considerations or who has oceanfront property, special gardening desires, site planning needs for swimming pool, spa, terraces, parking, walks etc. would be wise to inquire about services of a licensed and experienced landscape architect.

Who Do Landscape Architects Work For?

Landscape architects work closely with their clients to plan and shape the land and solve environmentally related problems, for small sites or several thousand acres, most often resulting in increased land value. Everyone benefits from the varied expertise of individual landscape architects, however, some who frequently use landscape architectural services include:

  • Municipal governments planning improvements such as streetscape revitalization, creation of zoning regulations, traffic planning and site plan review
  • Land or property management firms planning for development of property, a change in land use, or management of a land resource
  • Parks an recreation departments in preparation of comprehensive plans, site analyses, site selection, planning and development of parks and recreation facilities
  • Conservation and preservation organizations and agencies planning for the preservation of delicate, cultural, historical or natural resources
  • Owners of private residences planning a new residence, or shaping the environment of an existing house
  • Members of the business community planning and developing new business locations or expanding and refurbishing old facilities
  • The mining and extraction industry planning new facilities, or in reclamation
  • Real estate developers on all types of land development projects
  • Industry in planning and design of new and expanded facilities, or assessing environmental impact and planning environmental mitigation action
  • Utility companies in planning for new facilities including assessment, impact and routing of utility lines
  • People planning for land use in or near wetlands for delineation, preservation and mitigation plans
  • Community groups wishing to influence proposed development
  • Real estate professionals assessing land use potential
  • Owner or managers of farms, estates, or equestrian facilities when master planning or improving the grounds or gardens
  • Architects, engineers and allied professionals needing professional land planning expertise

Landscape architects design outdoor spaces that interpret our history and national heritage. Landscape architects design outdoor spaces that complement the form and function of adjacent buildings. They plan and design pedestrian and vehicular circulation. And plan for public and private preservation of rural lands and cultural landscapes.

Trade Associations

  • American Society of Landscape Architects
    636 Eye Street, NW
    Washington, DC 20001-3736
    Telephone: (202) 898-2444
    Web Site:
  • Council of Landscape Architectural
    Registration Boards

    12700 Fair Lakes Circle, Suite 110
    Fairfax, Virginia 22033
    Telephone: (703) 818-1300
    Web Site:

Filing a Complaint

While the majority of licensees conduct themselves as true professionals, the Division of Professional Licensure will take action against those who fail to maintain acceptable standards of competence and integrity.

In many cases, complaints are made by dissatisfied consumers - but, dissatisfaction alone is not proof of incompetence or sufficient grounds for disciplinary action.

If you have a serious complaint against a licensed landscape architect, call or write the Division's Office of Investigations and ask for a complaint form. Or download a copy of the complaint form pdf format of Application for Complaint Form

Division of Professional Licensure
Office of Investigations
1000 Washington Street, Suite 710
Boston, Mass. 02118
(617) 727-7406