Patios have evolved from the past’s simple square stone or brick platform on which to place a table and some chairs. Today’s patios extend your home’s living space to your outdoor area, adding to your property’s value and, most importantly, to your own personal enjoyment. Practically speaking, patios can be more cost-effective than adding a deck to your home due to their inherent durability and low maintenance. From small meditative corners tucked under a canopy of trees to fully-functioning outdoor kitchen and entertainment areas, your patio can be anything and everything you want it to be.
The challenge with so many choices, of course, is where to begin. This is where a professional landscape design company like Farmside Landscape becomes invaluable. We can help you create a patio that suits your needs, your budget, and works with the topography of your property.
Patios for Problem Yards
Often, areas that present themselves as “flaws” can turn out to be wonderful opportunities for creative design solutions. For example, a steeply sloped yard can be terraced to become both functional and attractive. For oddly shaped yards, a free-form shaped patio or even multiple smaller patios may make more sense.
The style of patio you decide upon should be the culmination of numerous factors, such as its intended use, the physical shape of your property, natural elements such as trees, yard orientation (does it face the sunny south or shadier north?) and personal style (formal, casual, modern, traditional).
For example, if a kitchen or entertainment style patio is something you want, we can help with functionality and flow, ensuring your patio is easily accessible to your home, and that foot traffic remains unencumbered when toting food from your interior kitchen to your exterior space.
A serene space to read or meditate would benefit from a destination patio – a patio further away from the home, in a quieter spot on your property. Destination patios can also make sense when considering elements such as air flow (better away from the walls of your home) as well as natural shade and attractive views.
Ideas for Planning for Your Patio
Some things to think about (and we’ll help you with!) when planning your patio:
- Determine how you want to use your patio. Do you want to use your patio as an extension of your home or more of an escape? Will it be used for cooking? Entertainment? Family time? Relaxation? Leisure? A combination of all of these things?
- How many people will use your patio? Will your patio be a gathering place for family and friends? A restorative retreat for one or two?
- When considering size – go larger than you think. A patio can seem large when viewed with the expanse and spaciousness of the outdoors. Add furnishings and people, and the reality of size constraints becomes quickly apparent.
One way to get a sense of the amount of space you’ll need is to mark off the size of the patio you’re considering, then place your outdoor furniture (or use sheets of newspaper if you don’t have furniture yet) within this space to see how much room this will occupy. Figure on 2-3 feet of space to maneuver around furnishings.
- Consider breaking up your patio into multiple spaces and functions, much like the various rooms inside of your house. Beautiful walking paths can also complement your patio and your home’s exterior.
- Views – does your property have a natural view you want to see or one you don’t? Is there a natural focal point in your yard? (This could be a man made element such as a pool).
- Consider including planting zones within your patio. Flowers, shrubs and trees soften hardscapes and add a beautiful aesthetic to any type of patio you choose.
- Fire pits add light, warmth, and ambience to your outdoor space. They’re natural gathering places for people and can extend the time you enjoy your outdoor space into cooler weather.
- Budget – once you have some ideas of what you’d like, we’ll work within your budget to help you achieve the patio of your dreams.
We’re here to help you design the patio that’s perfect for you. We’ll advise you on all the elements you want for your patio as well as provide you with our expertise on design, material selection and all the many options available today for maximizing your enjoyment of your outdoor space.