- Landscape Features
Patios are often the main social gathering place in your landscape. The concept of an outdoor room finds its fullest expression with the patio as it can be an extension of your families functional living space for the better part of three seasons each year. The truth is that not all patios are created equal because not all patios are well designed.
Here are a few of the common problems we see with patios that are under used:
1. The patio is too small — We see this all too often. Sometimes this is the unfortunate result of an attempt to save money and sometimes it is the result of underestimating the space actually needed to entertain. Either way, you will not be inclined to use a patio that is too small for your needs.
2. It lacks a strong connection to your kitchen — If you have to travel through several indoor rooms to bring food from the house out to the patio chances are you will use your patio space less. Even if you’re cooking food outdoors, chances are, you are still preparing food in the kitchen.
3. It has settled and is uneven –This is often due to an insufficient structural base under the surface. Another cause can be due to improper drainage causing the patio to be subject to seasonal freezing and heaving.
4. Wrong material choice — This is often an overlooked detail but if your intention is to do some formal entertaining then you need to install a paving material that is amenable to formal footwear. It is difficult navigating across even stone in heels while trying not to get stuck in the spaces between especially in the reduced light of the evening (this task gets even more challenging after several cocktails!).
5. It’s lacking privacy - Nothing is worse than feeling like your on public display every time you go out to your patio to eat a meal, have a conversation or even read a book.
6. No space for your grill — If we had a dollar for every awkwardly placed grill we’ve seen due to lack of planning, we would have enough money to treat you all (or at least many of you) to a delicious barbecue.
The good news is that if you’re considering adding a patio you can avoid these common pitfalls by investing in landscape design. The end result will be a higher return on your landscape investment through greater use and enjoyment of your outdoor spaces.
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