Landscaping is recently becoming one of the most valuable avenues of home improvement. Homeowners everywhere are taking notice of the popularity of unique, interesting, and highly-functional outdoor spaces that can act to extend the use of your interior space and provide a place for your guests and family to enjoy the great outdoors.
These 7 landscape designs show what’s possible with the right landscape architect, and just the right amount of imagination. These designs go well beyond the traditional deck and a lawn that mainstream landscape culture has clung on to since the suburban boom of the 1950s.
Here are 7 beautiful landscape designs that are guaranteed to charge your inspiration in the coming year.
1. The Outdoor Room
For maximum functionality and protection from the elements, an outdoor room with a flat patio, a large, built-in canopy, and a few choice pieces of outdoor furniture is the way to go. What makes this design special is actually what is occurring beyond the living space. The flowers, plants, and areas of softscape provide the perfect counterbalance to the more harsh, well-defined design elements of the hardscape.
This type dichotomy is important in landscape design, and helps to create areas for occupying and areas for simply observing.
2. The Wood Pathway
The wood pathway is the perfect landscape design element if you’re looking to connect two zones of outdoor space with something whimsical, natural, and aesthetically different. Most people default to stone or brick for pathways, but the allure of a wood pathway adds something contemporary to your landscape design, which will help your yard stand out among the rest of your neighborhood.
3. Your Next Wood Deck
The wood deck of yesterday was a fairly simple affair – a nice place elevated from the rest of your yard where a few patio chairs, a grill, or maybe a hammock could be placed to provide a bit of exterior living space. Architects can now take your deck design to the next level. Decking is becoming more integrated with surrounding elements, mixed in with areas of grass, concrete pavers and softscape, resulting in an aesthetic that’s fresh, inviting, and unique.
4. The Outdoor Fireplace
Like to entertain during cooler months? Consider an outdoor fireplace. A fire surround itself, flanked by an L-shaped section of stone paved seating, resulting in a look that is something right out of your latest issue of Dwell, is perfect for your outdoor entertaining. Get creative with the space directly adjacent to your outdoor fireplace and give your rear yard a personality that is undoubtedly you.
5. The Wood Slatted Partition
Even exterior space should be divided, modulated, and strategically allocated based on function and potential use. And while trees, hedges, or rows of potted plants can help achieve this perception of defined space, something like a slatted wood partition can make even more impactful design statements and act to enhance the other aspects of your outdoor space.
6. The Interior Extension
Your landscape design can act as a physical, visual, and functional extension of your home’s interior. It starts with a large glazed door which can be opened to effectively eliminate the buffer between inside and out. Then, it requires a careful hand when designing an exterior that feels as if it’s part of the home itself. This is a tricky balance to strike, but when done well can result in a home that feels larger than it is, and a yard that feels more connected.
7. The Shade Canopy
Shade is one of the most important elements of a functional exterior space. A wood slatted canopy structure can help extend the area of a covered patio into the other landscape elements. Not only does it help keep your exterior spaces cool, it provides a focal point for the rest of your yard to be designed around.