Professional Landscape Design Software
Realtime Landscaping Pro Landscape Design Software

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Adding a Plant

One of the key features of Realtime Landscaping Pro is its immense plant database. Thousands of plants are included that are used in landscape designs across the world.

To add a plant:

1.   Click the Add Plant button found near the top of the screen under the Landscape tab.

2.   Click the image of the default plant that appears to the right of the screen, and then select the plant you would like to use.

3.   Click on your design where you want to place the plant. Hold the Ctrl key to add more than one.

The picture below shows a landscape design using a variety of different plants.

landscaping plant

Plant Types: Models, Pictures, and UltraRes Plants®

Three types of plants are available: models, pictures, and UltraRes Plants®.

Plant Models are 3D models used to represent trees, shrubs, and other plants. They are not as realistic as pictures, but can be viewed from any angle.

Plant pictures are 2D photographs of real plants. These are look more realistic at a distance and in screen shots, but since they are flat they are not as realistic during a realtime walkthrough or in movies.

UltraRes Plants® are an exciting new technology developed exclusively by Idea Spectrum for our landscape design software. Our artists use a proprietary computer program to design the "seed" for each plant, and the UltraRes Plant® Engine grows the plants dynamically based on the desired age, season, and plant-specific growth characteristics. These plants are much more realistic and can be viewed from any angle. However, they do require a more powerful video card due to the additional level of geometric complexity.

Using the Choose Artwork dialog

The Choose Artwork dialog appears when you want to choose a plant from the plant selection. Plants are organized by categories, such as Shrubs, Tropical, and Trees, and also by planting zones, common names, botanical names, mature ages, and mature heights.

If you want to search for a specific plant, click the Search button. For details, see Searching for Plants.

Setting a Plant’s Starting Age

The starting age of a plant is set to a default value when the plant is first added to your landscape design. The starting age can be changed as needed to modify the height and width of the plant. In the picture below, a Pyracantha is shown at 3 and 4 years.

landscaping plant starting age

The actual age of a plant is the sum of the plant’s starting age and the Plant Growth setting. For example, if a landscape design has an existing arborvitae that is five years old, the Starting Age property should be set to 5 years.

To see how each plant will grow over time, use the Plant Growth setting. For details, see Setting Plant Growth.

Note: The plant growth is estimated based on plant growth formulas, the plant’s mature age, and the plant’s mature height. Since other factors influence growth, such as soil conditions and climate, it is recommended to contact your local nursery for more exact sizing information.

Setting the UltraRes Plant® Season

UltraRes Plants® can change their appearance based on the current season. By default, UltraRes Plants® use the global season as defined in the environment settings dialog. However, you can override the season for each plant as needed using the Season property.

To set the current season:

1.   Click Setting and Environment Settings.

2.   Click the Season tab. The following dialog will appear:

3.   Click the button next to the desired season and then click the OK button.

Tips:

      Only UltraRes Plants® with their Season property set to Use global setting will be affected.

      Not all plants have a different appearance in all seasons. For example, most evergreens have the same basic appearance all year.

Below is a Japanese Flowering Crabapple shown in each of the four seasons:

Automatic Level of Detail

When viewing plant models and UltraRes Plants® from a distance, they automatically show less detail the farther away they are. This helps your computer run faster when working with large designs. However when you take a screen shot, create a movie, or print your design, all plants will be drawn at their full resolution regardless of their distance to the viewpoint.

Creating Custom Plants

The library of plant models and pictures can be expanded using the Picture Import Wizard. To create a custom plant variation based on the currently selected plant, use the Plant Creation Wizard. Note: Due to their complexity, you cannot currently create custom variations of UltraRes Plants®.

See also:

Plant Properties
Searching for Plants
Picture Import Wizard
Model Import Wizard
Plant Creation Wizard
Model Creation Wizard
Editing Materials
Setting Object Properties
Selecting Objects
Editing Objects
Setting Plant Growth