Garden Design Tips: Outdoor Rooms

Creating a luscious garden as a compliment to your outdoor space will easily influence any reservations you may have regarding staycations. Skip the luggage and long distances by simply stepping out your back door. Along with providing your outdoor space with natural beauty, gardens provide shade, accent an outdoor room and bring a multi-sensory experience to your time spent outside.

With these garden design tips, you can turn any outdoor room into a personal oasis of relaxation.

Creating Outdoors Rooms with Your Garden

Define and emphasize any outdoor space with a variety of plants and shrubs. Depending on the design of your space, it is possible to cover an entire space with vertical shrubs. Growing upwards of ten feet, pergola plants can create an evergreen wall by installing lattice along the side of the structure or atop the roof. Place a few upright plans, a short hedge, or potted miniature tree along the perimeter of your space to define the area and its entrances. Planted containers make ideal dividers because they can easily be moved. Vines can be planted on an arbor to designate an entrance to an outdoor room.

“If I ever go looking for my heart’s desire again, I won’t look any further than my own backyard.”

– Dorothy, Wizard of Oz

If you are looking to create a more secluded, relaxing space, place a pair of Adirondack chairs under the shade of a tall tree. Use flagstones and plant moss between the stones to add ambience and colour. Add planters, big or small, nearby to enjoy the smells of growing flora as you kick back and relax.

Using Your Garden to Create Shade
Garden Shade
Harold Leidner Landscape Architects

Without shade, outdoor rooms can become unbearable heat traps on extremely hot summer months. Plant deciduous trees near your outdoor space to provide shade. These trees are ideal since they lose their leaves in the fall when the warmth of the sun is desired. Be sure to plant trees on the south and west side of your outdoor room, prune low branches to provide natural ventilation. Tall shrubs and hedges can also provide shade, increase the comfort level, and provide evaporative cooling.

Using plants to accentuate and define an outdoor space will have ample benefits to both cost and look. If planned properly, accessories such as curtains and fans will not be necessary while annual up-keep on the facade of your space can be minimized with climbing vines and plants. Incorporating these two simple elements into your outdoor space will not only have you relishing summer days but have you convinced ‘there’s no place like home’.