Come Join Us!

Are you an
Engineering professional?
Join Eng-Tips Forums!
  • Talk With Other Members
  • Be Notified Of Responses
    To Your Posts
  • Keyword Search
  • One-Click Access To Your
    Favorite Forums
  • Automated Signatures
    On Your Posts
  • Best Of All, It's Free!

*Eng-Tips's functionality depends on members receiving e-mail. By joining you are opting in to receive e-mail.

Posting Guidelines

Promoting, selling, recruiting, coursework and thesis posting is forbidden.


Link To This Forum!

Partner Button
Add Stickiness To Your Site By Linking To This Professionally Managed Technical Forum.
Just copy and paste the
code below into your site.

Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

This L.A I know mentioned that a P.E can actually desgn and sign a set of Landscape Plans. Keep in mind  this is Florida so the statutes may allow this.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Check with your Technical Board of Registration.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Check with the Florida Board of Professional Engineers
I am registered in Florida and it is my understanding that a P.E. cannot seal landscaping plans.  It is a separate license, R.L.A.
Please post back if you hear otherwise from the Board.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

An engineer can not seal Landscape Architecture documents. It is a separate discipline.

LA and LC - A "registered landscape architect" means a person who holds a license to practice landscape architecture in this state. A Landscape Architect may perform the following services, including, but not limited to:
  •  consultation, investigation, research, planning, and design;
  •  preparation of drawings, specifications, contract documents and reports;
  •  construction supervision;
  •  landscape management, including the use of Xeriscape, to the extent that, the dominant purpose of such services or creative works is the preservation, conservation, enhancement, or determination of proper land uses, natural land features, ground cover and plantings, or naturalistic and aesthetic values;
  •  determine the grounds and approaches for and the siting of buildings and structures, outdoor areas, or other improvements;
  •  setting of grades;
  •  shaping and contouring of land and water forms;
  •  determination of drainage and provision for storm drainage and irrigation systems; and
  •  the design of such tangible objects (retaining walls, gazebos, fences, etc) and features (waterfalls, ponds, etc).

Unlike landscape architecture, landscape design is not a licensed profession that is regulated by the State of Florida.


RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Interesting to note that of the nine items mentioned, a licensed Civil could do 8.

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

and there are a couple things such as retaining walls and storm drainage that I would not trust a RLA to do without help from an engineer

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

The Florida Landscape Architect Act seems to have been written by someone without knowledge of the practice of engineering and/or architecture.

Here is the landscape architect act from Illinois:

(f) "Landscape Architectural Practice" means the offering or furnishing of professional services in connection with a landscape architecture project that do not require the seal of an architect, land surveyor, professional engineer, or structural engineer. Such services may include, but are not limited to, providing preliminary studies; developing design concepts; planning for the relationships of physical improvements and intended uses of the site; establishing form and aesthetic elements; analyzing and providing for life safety requirements; developing those construction details on the site which are exclusive of any building or structure; preparing and coordinating technical submissions; and conducting site observation of a landscape architecture project.

I like the part that says "offering or furnishing of professional services in connection with a landscape architecture project that do not require the seal"

The Florida Act seems to be a paradox. The landscape architect should not seal plans for items like retaining walls because he has no expertise in that area. The landscape architect should not put his seal on plans prepared by another engineer either.

An engineer can not put his seal on a landscape architect's work either because the LA work was not done under his direction. In addition, the LA work is probably not worthy of sealing anyway.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

The engineering stamp and licence is not something to be taken lightly.

A P.E should not be stamping anything that is outside his/her field, for a number of obvious reasons regardless of similar discipline, simplicity, worth, etc.


RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

ryb01 - you are right but I think we are more concerned with an architect signing plans that clearly should be designed by an experienced engineer. I have no desire and am not qualified to stamp a planting plan.   

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

With my knowledge of the plants of this world, if I stamped a landscape plan, it would probably turn out to be either a pot farm, or a some remote location in southern Afghanastan.

In either case, it would not bode well for me.  I'll stick to what I know.

Mike McCann
MMC Engineering
Motto:  KISS
Motivation:  Don't ask

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

cvg, msquared48- agreed, just wanted to throw it out there.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Just tell them you thought it was water treatment "plants".

There's about 20 items there and I don't recall seeing one that a PE couldn't do, unless you're refering to "aesthetic".

I see reseeding, planting with all kinds of plants and many various reinstatement works on pipeline RoW details.  

"Being GREEN isn't easy" ..Kermit

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

He is my line of division as a civil engineer and PE.  I prepare site plans for permitting with a local municipality for zoning certificate.  Zoning requires review of parking spaces, setbacks, landscaping ... Landscaping is often "point" based, i.e. 10 pts for a 2.5" diameter tree, 3 pts per shrub, with a total point requirement equal to half the width of the lot.  I'll count existing trees and place proposed plantings to equal the required point count.  My proposals always state that my landscape plan is "points based" and for zoning purposes.

I suspect that is what your RLA buddy means.

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

Most state engineering and architecture laws allow the incidental cross practice of each in their respective professions. For instance, an architect can do both civil and structural "engineering" as a part of its architectural services for some buildings.  The same is true of engineers.  They may provide elevations and "architectural" details when doing the structural or civil design of a building.

In the Florida law, the cross practice between Landscape Architects and Civil Engineers is less clear.  The following provision in the statute seems to allow it:

(6)  This part shall not be construed to affect part I of this chapter, chapter 471, or chapter 472, respectively, except that no such person shall use the designation or term "landscape architect," "landscape architectural," "landscape architecture," "L.A.," "landscape engineering," or any description tending to convey the impression that she or he is a landscape architect, unless she or he is registered as provided in this part.

Chapter 471 is the Engineering Law and Chapter 472 is the Surveying Law.  The "Part I" reference is to the practice of Architecture.

BOTTOM several noted, check with the state board!

RE: Can a P.E. sign off on Landscape Plans?

BigInch...that's essentially correct.  Those terms are "protected", just as "engineer" and "architect" are protected.  That section doesn't allow just anyone to provide landscape architecture services, but seems to single out that if you are an architect, engineer, or surveyor, you would be allowed to do incidental design.

Red Flag This Post

Please let us know here why this post is inappropriate. Reasons such as off-topic, duplicates, flames, illegal, vulgar, or students posting their homework.

Red Flag Submitted

Thank you for helping keep Eng-Tips Forums free from inappropriate posts.
The Eng-Tips staff will check this out and take appropriate action.

Reply To This Thread

Posting in the Eng-Tips forums is a member-only feature.

Click Here to join Eng-Tips and talk with other members!


White Paper: Agile Product Engineering and Improved Product Outcomes
Today’s product development cycle is fraught with difficulties. Increased demands for complex functionality and reduced product development windows cause engineering teams to borrow practices from the IT industry, swapping outdated serial workflows for a more flexible and collaborative design method known as Agile Product Engineering. Download Now

Close Box

Join Eng-Tips® Today!

Join your peers on the Internet's largest technical engineering professional community.
It's easy to join and it's free.

Here's Why Members Love Eng-Tips Forums:

Register now while it's still free!

Already a member? Close this window and log in.

Join Us             Close