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Designing Your Outdoor Living Area

The winter snow and cold weather are holding many of us captive in our own homes. While cabin fever is tightening its grip, you can do more than just dream of living outside. You can begin planning a patio that’s an extension of your indoor space – an outdoor living room and kitchen that contain everything you would want in an outdoor living area.

Outdoor kitchens and living areas continue to be among the most popular landscape features. As a result, our installation crews will be busy, starting as soon as winter breaks right through until Old Man Winter starts breathing down our necks again. To assure that you’ll enjoy a full season of outdoor living, it’s important that you make decisions now, during the winter.

Here’s a recommended process for deciding what you want in your outdoor living space:

• You are indoors surrounded by all the comforts of home in both your kitchen and living room. Who wants to go out in this weather? Take your mind off the weather outside by making a list of the appliances and furnishings you absolutely can’t do without in your new outdoor space. Then make a list of those items that you don’t have indoors that you want outdoors. A wood-fired pizza oven and a fire pit are two items that come to my mind immediately.

• Jot down what style of furniture you like best – modern, traditional, upholstered, rattan. Do you prefer more individual seating or group seating on couches? Remember, your goal isn’t to recreate your indoor living room outside, it’s to complement the inside room by extending the style across the threshold.

• What other outdoor living items would you like to consider? A swimming pool, a hot tub, a sauna, an outdoor gym, or amenities that are uniquely yours?

• Schedule a meeting with one of our landscape designers and bring your lists. Give the designer copies of the lists so they can develop a budget based on your selections.

• Plan on a follow-up meeting to review the budget. Depending on the size of your lists and the amount you’re willing to allocate to this project, you may have to cut some items out or, better yet, prioritize. Have the space built as the funds become available.

We can design your outdoor living space to be built all at once or in stages. If you select to build in stages, the space will be designed so that it looks complete after each stage.

Our outdoor living season is short. You’ll want to spend every minute you can outdoors. For that to be a reality, however, you need to be ready to build as soon as spring arrives. Minimize the time that your precious patio space is under construction by planning ahead.

One comment on “Designing Your Outdoor Living Area

  1. As a horticulturist, much of what gets added to landscapes now baffles me. I want to leave most of it inside. When I go outside, I want to be ‘outside’. I live a very primitive lifestyle anyway. That is why I am a horticulturist and not a landscape designer!

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