How to Create a Great Outdoor Space

steps through garden

Here are several specific techniques for creating spaces to enjoy the soothing effects of nature in different ways.

Create a courtyard. Look for any opportunity from large compounds that wrap around inviting exterior gathering spaces to dense, urban infill sites where a pocket courtyard works to bring natural light deep into a home and presents a private outdoor space for occupants.

Add curb appeal by creating a magical journey to the door through elongated steps that can double as seating, plantings that reveal the path slowly, splashes of color, secret nooks, unexpected but easy-to-navigate twists and turns and blending the garage with other hardscapes between the street and house.
Provide a balance of hard- and softscapes. Hardscaped outdoor spaces provide a level of comfort and low maintenance, which means they will be used more often. But a healthy dose of plants and gardens complements those exterior spaces with the serenity of nature.
Furnish your outdoor room with an indoor attitude to make your exterior space functional and comfortable year-round. Add fans; artificial lighting; cozy furniture; and fireplaces, especially those that double as stoves.
Reserve a budget for bridge spaces. Home entry and exit design aspects often get overlooked or cut when a project runs over budget. How someone enters a house or the way an interior room opens up to the outside can make the difference between an outdoor area that is used every day or not at all.

Terri Parsons, Allied Member ASID, NKBA, Principal Interior Designer
Anne Parsons Interiors 760-525-2501 |

Categories: Gardening