Yard/Landscape Design

Yard and Landscaping Design Ideas

It doesn’t matter if your yard needs just a few new plants or a total refresh, redesigning the landscape can be quite overwhelming. Since this is the case, it is essential that you have a few yard and landscape design ideas to help your dream outdoor space come to life. Rarely does landscape design get the time and effort it deserves.

If you have ever taken on a landscape design project before, you may be overwhelmed by all the choices that are available. However, if you begin to think of this as a room inside your home, it makes it much easier. All the same principles that guide the room setup in your home should be used to guide your outside designs, as well. You know the right way to put together a room, which means your landscape should not be a huge issue. Some tips to help you along the way are found here.

We will offer a few novel ideas that most people do not readily think of when preparing to landscape their yard. For example the type and color of siding on your home might have some influence on shrub and plant choices. A good friend who owns a siding company in Richmond, Va. advised me of a number of things to consider. Here are a few of them. If you have wood siding, you need to be very careful to select shrubs that do not grow out as much as they do up because branches touching the wood will cause it to rot quicker. Wood siding is more maintenance anyway, so you want to preserve it as much as possible by not causing any additional issues. He also said brick tends to be more formal looking, particularly red brick, so if your house is red brick then more traditional plants like small evergreens with straight line mulch beds are far more popular than more modern looks. And finally you can choose flowers that complement the color of your house. Sidings come in dozens of colors, so picking plant and flower colors that work with the color of the siding adds a beautiful touch.

Determine What You Want and Need from the Outdoor Space You Have

Create a list of wants and needs. Do you want an area for your kids to play? Do you want to have a garden? Do you want a patio for friends and family to gather? Create a few rough sketches of your yard and think about where you want to put everything. It is a great way to ensure you get the landscape design you really want. You don’t have to create a “master plan” just get your ideas on paper.

Consider Location

Get to know the wind and sun patterns. You may want to put a patio on the west side of your home, but it will get a lot of sun, which means spending time outdoors in the summer may not be comfortable. Take some time to consider the wind and sun trends at different times of the day and months of the year. Another thing to consider is whether you are on city water and sewer or have a septic system. If city, you are good to go as no one will be digging around in your yard to find the tank. But if you are on a septic system, you definitely need to consider how to do the landscaping above the tank, and also keep in mind that the drain field could also be an issue, though that is much less likely than the need to access the tank. My friend, who owns a septic pumping and installation service tells me they now sell green or brown metal lids that you can use to cover the tank that blend into grass or mulch, preventing the need to have the ground dug up above the system every few years to have the tank pumped. This is a must if you are going to be doing high quality landscaping. The last thing you want is a big ugly patch of bare dirt that your well-manicured lawn now has to grow over again.

Get to Know Your Landscape

You should live with your current space for a while. If you try to come to a fast conclusion about the yard and garden area, it may lead to decisions that just don’t work. After you spend some more time outside, you will be able to find the areas where you would like certain elements.

Outdoor Kitchens and Fireplaces

Another fantastic and popular touch, albeit expensive, is an outdoor kitchen or fireplace, or even a fire pit. If you have the space, you should seriously consider adding such a thing. All three of these items are gaining in popularity, partly because folks are getting so sick of being inside. With so many businesses closed and outdoor activities curtailed, even being in the yard seems like a vacation to many. So having a great focal point where friends and family can gather is a huge plus.

Obviously, kitchens are much more popular in the warmer climates, where fireplaces and fire pits are better for cooler places. A large swath across the middle of the country, like where we are in Richmond Va, see all three gaining in popularity. The kitchen takes up the largest area of the three, though if you account for the distance you need to keep the chairs in front of the fireplace, it is not that much more space. Even a fire pit, which you can sit all the way around rather than in front of, takes a lot of room. Also if you are using wood as fuel rather than propane or natural gas, the smoke can blow all over the place requiring even further distancing from the fire.

But if you have the room, these things are great additions. If you are interested, a site where you can find a lot of info is this one from a company that builds outdoor kitchens, fireplaces, and fire pits in Richmond.

Start Out Small

If you are fond of TV home and garden shows, you have likely seen massive outdoor areas completely transformed in a matter of days. This isn’t real life. Even if you hire a professional a complete transformation can take weeks – or longer. Be sure to put time and effort into the most important changes first. As you make these changes you will begin to see other areas to make improvements.

If you are ready to design the perfect outdoor space, be sure to keep the tips and information here in mind. Doing so will help ensure you achieve the look and functionality desired and that the design works with your lifestyle and needs. Being informed is the best way to approach any design project.

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