Maximizing your outdoor living space starts with using your imagination. Sit outside on your patio and play the game of ‘what if’. What if there was a waterfall? What if there was a garden that evoked memories of trips to Italy or the south of France? What if you could cook on the patio or spend hours singing songs by the fireplace? Then, go inside and look out the windows to imagine what you would like to see when you look outside. This will help you identify the steps needed to achieve your landscape dreams.
Having separate outdoor living spaces allows you to create mini-landscape designs for each of them. But the more successful you are at physically separating one outdoor living space from another, the more flexibility you have to diversify without creating a hodgepodge. To reduce the field of design options, choose a theme and run it. You might prefer to take inspiration from a Japanese garden, closing the space with a bamboo fence and focusing on a relaxing palette of evergreens and mosses; a stone path and a dripping fountain complete the look.
Or, if you want to evoke the summers you spent in the English countryside, opt for a cottage garden lined with wildflowers, along with a campfire made of cobblestones and weathered wooden seats.When planning your outdoor living space, be sure to consider natural shade sources in your backyard. Existing cantilever trees are the perfect place to start. Additionally, accessories such as awnings and pergolas can provide shade in your garden. Outdoor fireplaces, electric heaters, and gas heaters are also great options for keeping warm until late fall and allowing you to resume your activities in early spring.A natural palette of neutral tones and touches of terracotta will work in almost any outdoor space and will have a calming and relaxing effect.
Larger trees, such as linden trees and oaks, are likely to predate your stay in your home and provide shade and maturity to your landscape. Think of your evergreens (boxwood, juniper or holly) as the bones in your garden, the plants that will stay green all year round and serve as the base of your spring and summer palette.Today, outdoor living areas include amenities such as seating areas around a fire pit, outdoor furniture and sofas, flat-screen TVs, and high-end kitchens with refrigerators, sinks, and grills. Expand your indoor space by dressing up your outdoor living area with thoughtful furniture and accessory options, such as armchairs and cushions.No matter the size of the garden, patio, or outdoor space you have, you want it to feel like an extension of your home while still having that comfortable, relaxing environment. Make the most of your outdoor living area by incorporating an element of shade in the garden.
With hard work done, you can sit back, relax and enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells of your little piece of outdoor space.