While beautiful grass is often considered to be a homeowners pride and joy, today we’re seeing lots of alternatives in landscape design that offer more dimension, better mixed-use opportunities, and less maintenance than the traditional green that we’ve come to know and love. With so many planting options and warmer weather stretching well into the later months of the year, now might be a great time to start planning a few refurbishments to give you a new look and better use of your outdoor space. Here are some ideas:
No More Mowing: For people who love the look of grass but can’t stand the maintenance, no mow “smart lawns” have begun cropping up as an option for residential spaces. Products such as Eco Lawn and No Mow Lawn Mix offer fast establishing grass that then grows slow, requiring only a few mows per year if any at all. Many of these products also thrive with minimal water and their deep seeded roots are able to grab nutrients, meaning less fertilization and chemical treatments.
Play Space: The rec room has always been a popular option for young families, but why not designate a place in the yard for fun too? For people who don’t like weeding, creating a designated area to enjoy games is a great way to entertain guests and keep kids occupied for hours. Popular choices include long sand or stone pits which can be used for horseshoes or cornhole, or paved areas that can double as a croquet or bocce court.
“Hygge” Time: One of the big trends of the year is creating a space dedicated to comfort, coziness, and mindfulness. “Hygge” (pronounced hue-gah) is a Scandinavian term that’s used to describe the feeling of comfort and coziness, which has become popular indoors in the form of meditation rooms and dedicated reading nooks. That concept is now making its way outside, with homeowners embracing the longer seasons of comfortable weather by building cozy fire pits and stone wall enclosed zen gardens for quiet contemplation.
Contained Gardens: Everyone loves the idea of homegrown fruits, vegetables, and herbs, but few of us have the time to prepare and look after a large garden. For a lower maintenance approach, try potting your favorites in large planters that you can place closer to the house. Tomatoes, herbs, peppers, and beans are all space savers that can survive and thrive in smaller containers.
Outdoor Living: Probably the biggest - and most expensive - ongoing trend is creating an additional living space outside of the house. From synthetic decking to full blown outdoor kitchens, more and more people want to come home and relax outside after a long day in the office. Pizza ovens, barbecue courtyards, and the ever famous outdoor bar are just some of the options that homeowners are continuing to invest in to enjoy now and add value potential to their home when it comes time to sell.
Bob O’Donnell is the owner of O’Donnell Bros. Inc., a Bristol-based home improvement company established in 1975. Email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Ask the Pro.” All questions may be considered for publication. To contact Bob for your remodeling needs, call O’Donnell Bros. Inc. at (860) 589-5155 or visit http://www.odonnellbros.com. Advice is for guidance only