It’s a classic homeowner habit everyone can relate to: pouring lots of dollars and many hours into the interior of your house and barely giving a second thought to the outside. New cabinets for the bathroom, lights for the kitchen…yet you barely have time to cut the grass!
I may sound like a broken record here but I’ll say it again: do not overlook the potential of your backyard. After all, when summer hits, our backyards become the social hub for any household. Warmer weather (and no chance of frostbite!) means more opportunity to spend with our families and friends in the beautiful outdoors. So why not give you backyard aesthetic a little thought, care and attention?
It’s not as hard as you think. You don’ have to be professional landscape architect to create a backyard oasis… you just need some crafty thinking and a bit of innovation.
Here are my top three tips for making your lawn as “lounge-y” as your living room…the perfect spot for unwinding without sacrificing on design or comfort.
1. Rethink the fence
Let’s face it, sometimes living in an urban centre leaves you wanting to put some distance between you and the folks next door. Unfortunately, fences just aren’t cutting it anymore. It’s time to think outside the box. I recommend planting small trees instead of big ones as small roots mean you can plant them closer to your deck to minimize exposure. If you’re looking to add a bit of extra style, I love up cycling old doors or fence panels to a fun retro piece.
When it comes to boosting your backyard potential, I’m a huge fan of useable space. Whether it’s enjoying a coffee and the morning paper in the sun or hosting a long weekend barbeque, a deck is an ideal way to achieve that even surface perfect for dining furniture. For outdoors projects, my go-to is MicroPro Sienna, a pressure treated wood that’s not only eco-friendly and durable, but has a gorgeous rich-brown hue that doesn’t require initial staining. Plus, it minimizes the runoff of chemicals, so I have peace of mind that my flower, herb or veggie gardens will stay healthy!
3. Add different textures
Adding a variety of fabrics is an easy way to give your space depth, personality, and texture, while also creating cosy outdoor space that allows you to treat your deck like your favourite room. Worried about dirt? Browns and dark colours feel like safe options, but patterned fabrics are also great because they hide grass stains well, but still give that extra touch of style.Carson Arthur is an international landscape designer with a focus on environmentally friendly design. His HGTV series, Critical Listing, teaches homeowners how to raise the value of their homes through outdoor renovations. Visit him at www.CarsonArthur.com