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07 May 2018

Garden Design: 8 quick tips to get you started on the right foot …

Let’s assume for a moment to find ourselves in your head, I see a place full of ideas (perhaps confused) and desire to transform your outdoor space !!!

Garden Design 8 quick tips to get you started on the right foot

What do you see?

Before you make any decision on how to tackle the path of transformation of the space of your dreams, today I want to give you some advice to start your adventure on the right foot.

WHAT NOT TO DO IN GARDEN DESIGN

  1. Let’s start from what you DO NOT HAVE to do if you really want to get an amazing result:
    Do not make the mistake of understanding the garden as a space made up exclusively of vegetation.
    In most of our surveys we noticed that the gardens are structured according to a very common pattern: a simple central lawn, randomly scattered trees and shrubs and perimeter square hedge.
    A successful garden is made up of a combination of several elements (plants, natural and artificial) that interact and interact harmoniously with each other.
  2. Do not start work without having a clear planning of the interventions to be carried out.
    You would spend twice as much time and three times as much money reaching an unsatisfactory result.
  3. Do not ask advice and advice to people or companies that are not really specialized in the sector.
    You would lose time and money in exchange for simple copy-paste of often incorrect solutions.
    Many of our customers have contacted us precisely to solve problems resulting from wrong interventions that have resulted in them only UNEXPECTED COSTS!
  4. Do not underestimate the importance of a correct execution of the irrigation and lighting system.
    An improvised and poorly constructed irrigation system will be the first cause of murder of your plants and your lawn. Moreover, an unplanned lighting system will represent the reason for the scenographic and functional failure of your outdoor space, every day, on time when the sun goes down.

WHAT TO DO IN GARDEN DESIGN

  1. Let’s see what you have to do if you really want to get an amazing result:
  2. Ask yourself first of all what you would like to do in your garden, as you would like to use it.
    It may seem trivial, but many people can not imagine all the possible functions that could take place in their garden or terrace.
    Evaluate estimates of supplies and processing required to “friends and friends of friends”. Often reclining on the convenience of requesting a service to friends or friend of the friend binds you to accept “emotional and courtesy” that are often detrimental to your pocket and to the success of the job.
  3. Go to the nursery to buy plant material only when you have clear ideas about what you need to buy.
  4. Very often it happens that when you go to most nurseries with unclear ideas, so without a detailed list of plants to buy, you only become the palatable prey of a seller who will try to elegantly dispose of the plant material to be disposed.
  5. Spend a few days to organize, plan and plan the work to be done.

Starting with the right foot means avoiding all the typical mistakes due to improvisation. Save TIME and MONEY and get a sure result.


Also read: IRRIGATION SYSTEM PROJECT: HOW TO REALIZE AN EFFECTIVE IRRIGATION SYSTEM IN GARDEN DESIGN

14 Apr 2018

A LIFE OUTDOORS

If you spend some time outdoors, then you need to consider getting outdoor furniture. Selecting the right outdoor furniture involves much more than just selecting something beautiful. You must take your time to select something practical that works fine.

A life outdoor

You must consider the use of the outdoor space that you want to furnish. Is the outdoor space open or under covers? How many people do you want the space to accommodate? Will the outdoor area be used for lounging or dining or both of them?

You must evaluate the space of the outdoor area before going to select furniture. It is easy to be deceived while you are in the showroom and select outdoor furniture that is too big or small for your outdoor living area. You also need to evaluate how regular maintenance will need to be done on the furniture. Furniture in open-air outdoor living areas will need to be maintained regularly. But if there is a roof above the space, you won’t need to do much maintenance.

Outdoor furniture is usually cleaned more regularly than indoor furniture. When cleaning them, they are moved a lot, so you should consider getting furniture that is light and not heavy to move.

With the right furniture and decor, you can create

STYLE

Most times, it is after the garden has been designed that furniture is selected. So, you need to pick the furniture that will blend and complement the garden. When selecting outdoor furniture, consider the fabric that will cover the furniture, the material the furniture is made of, the design and other factors that will complement each other. Timber can be paired with fabrics like cream/white but not with florals. Aluminum and glass work well in modern settings, but they may look out of place in a traditional, country setting.

Timber is good for outdoor décor and goes well with most settings. Teak is a good choice for timber. It can last in all weather conditions making it suitable for use in areas without roofing.

PLACEMENT

Another important factor that needs to be considered is the placement of the furniture. You must consider the space and the surroundings of your outdoor living area. You might position the furniture to benefit from the wind that blows in from a direction. You might also want to accentuate a panoramic view. When placing furniture, you must also take great care that it doesn’t obstruct doors and other access points. If your outdoor living area will be used for dining, then furniture can be conveniently placed close to the barbecue. If people are going to gather around a firepit or table, then you need to select two-seaters or single seat lounges. But if you are going to place your furniture against a wall or facing a view, you can go for a long lounge.

If you need furniture that can be moved a lot, you can go for ottomans or outdoor beanbags. This can be moved from garden to pool to lawn as you desire. You can also move them based on the direction of the sun. They are perfect for providing casual seating when they are needed.

COMFORT

Comfort is a very important factor when selecting outdoor furniture. You need to consider how comfortable people will be when they sit on the furniture. You must consider the use of soft furnishings and the ergonomics of the furniture. Chairs with cushions will be used more than chairs without cushions. When scatter cushions are used on lounges, users will be more comfortable. Chairs with a slightly angled back will be more relaxing than chairs with upright backs.

There are various scatter and seating cushions available that will help you add variety to your outdoor décor. There are a lot of outdoor fabrics and options available. You just need to take your time and select the right options so you can have more comfort and bring refreshing colors to your outdoor décor and furniture. Things like outdoor rugs can be added to give warmth to bare feet, provide better comfort and make the outdoor space cozier.

With a well-designed, furnished and comfortable outdoor living space, you will have more entertainment and relaxation options. It will also make your house look better. Guests will enjoy barbecue and drinks there. You can also have two outdoor living areas if you wish. You can have one for dining and one for an outdoor lounge room where you can watch TV, relax and warm yourself with an outdoor heater.

outdoor garden design

A TOUCH OF OUTDOOR ART

With outdoor sculptures, you can have focal points add color and character to your outdoor living space. You and your guests will enjoy the garden art and other outdoor décor you decide to place in your outdoor living area. Today, more people are placing great emphasis on outdoor décor and putting the same effort into decorating their outdoor living area as they do for the interior of their homes.

SCULTURE TO CREATE A FOCAL POINT IN THE GARDEN

You need to consider the size of your garden before selecting a sculptural piece for it. Small pieces can create an intimate look in small gardens, but they will look out of place in a large garden. Large sculpture can serve as good focal points but beware of selecting a piece that is too large.

Vase decor garden

You don’t need to buy from stores. You can opt for one of the many talented artists available. You can work with any of them and come up with creative designs appropriate for your outdoor living area. This way, you can customize and finetune pieces to your tastes. This way, your garden will look better, and you will enjoy it more. Your visitors will also love it, and it will create a better impression on them. You might like this option better than buying an already-made piece. You and the artist can decide on a placement spot that will fit your outdoor space most.

DECOR AND MORE

Wall art is a clever way to add some decorator flair, especially in small gardens as the art sits on the vertical plane rather than claiming valuable floor space. Popular choices include metal plaques with simple graphic images or wording and laser-cut metal screens. If set slightly off the wall, the cut-out patterns can cast shifting shadows on the wall. Mirrors are another great decorator item when you don’t have much space to spare, or when your goal is to give a space as much of a room-like feel as you can.

“A comfortable, well-furnished outdoor area will

Pots are another decorative element you can introduce. These are available in a huge array of styles, materials and colours, including, at the premium end, pots that incorporate lighting and those that have been designed to look like modern sculptures. And if you want to delight two senses — sight and sound — add a designer water feature.

The knack to furnishing and decorating an outdoor space is to observe it, taking into account such things as viewing points and thinking through how you and your family want to use it. Measuring up is important, too, but, once you know what you want and where you want to put it, be confident in your choices. You can then just sit back and enjoy.

Match your decor and furniture

RECYCLED STYLE

Long gone are the days of mass-produced cement statues. Today, people want pieces that express who they are. Rather than getting cheap nick knack-type pieces, they want quality and they want pieces that they are proud to show off to their friends and family.

“The big looks at the moment are bright, fun colourful pieces and those made from recycled materials. By choosing something made from recycled materials, it brings all of the visual elements and energy that the material had in its original form. Wood will have aged and often changed in its look, developing an interesting patina, and pieces made from disused metal objects speak of their history.

One of our most popular ranges is a series of sculptures and decorative pieces made from old oil drums that may have been used by up to six companies so display a variety of colours and logos — this ensures the finished piece is utterly unique.

As to what design you pick, Just choose something you enjoy and that calls out to you. That way, it will keep on giving you that joy each time you look at it.

DOUBLE DUTY

Heating and lighting may be functional elements in a garden but they can be decorative, too, enhancing the look and feel of an outdoor space. If your outdoor area has an industrial feel, you can enhance it with bunker-style wall sconces with a brass or nickel finish.

Similarly, you can use sinuous spike lights to give a contemporary space a modern, arty look. Then there are floor and tabletop lights designed to look just like indoor lamps. Firepits and ethanol-fuelled outdoor fireplaces are often works of sculptural art as much as a means of warming yourself and guests. Firepits range from clean-lined architectural creations boasting modern matt black finishes to those of more rustic mien, with rounded forms and a rust-effect finish. Ethanol fireplaces can range from those that look like smooth cement pots to laser-cut metal lanterns.


Also read: Garden Design Inspiration: 8 Awesome Ideas for your Garden.

 

28 Mar 2018

Decks to adore

When the nights are balmy and the days long and warm, there’s nothing more relaxing than lazing an undercover deck transforms the backyard into an outdoor retreat that can be enjoyed year round, connecting the indoors with the garden.
If you want to build a deck, take time to do some research, to find the size and style that suits your home and choose a material aligned to your budget and lifestyle. Be sure to check building codes and bushfire zone regulations for your area, too. Timber was once the only material used for decks but these days there is a range of composite, resin, metal and cement products that look smart and modern, and they need little maintenance.
Unless you have other shady spots, you’re going to need a roof to shade the deck in summer, so factor this into the construction costs. Make the deck more inviting by styling with bright cushions on the furniture, outdoor rugs and potted plants. Buy some self-watering pots, and use a double saucer for big plants if you have timber decking, as water leaks stain the wood.

Garden desing materials deck

Timber decking

People choose timber decking because it’s a natural product with a warm, traditional ambience. It comes in a range of widths, and is a good choice if you enjoy going barefoot in summer, as it stays cooler than many other materials. It’s also good in wet climates and for pool areas because, although it absorbs some water, it does not get too slippery.
Timber’s biggest downfall is that it weathers when exposed to the elements and needs sealing, usually yearly, depending on its exposure to sun and rain. Sealers enhance the natural colour and stop timber splitting, cracking and rotting. Decking products can only be used on seasoned timber, as unseasoned hardwoods containing tannins need to be treated to remove these before sealing.
Timber decks are not as suitable for fire-prone areas and can be attacked by termites and borers, although hardwoods are more resistant. When you are shopping around, ask about the source of the timber, to check on sustainability. The tropical hardwoods are mostly felled in South-East Asian rainforests. Here are some options to consider.

Garden desing materials deck

Manmade decking

For a non-fuss, practical and modern finish, consider composite, polyurethane resin, aluminium and cement fibre decking, as they keep their good looks with just an occasional sweep and mop. Fibre cement and aluminium are the best choice for fire-prone areas, and any wood composite that has a fire-retardant coating. Some have a Bushfire Attack Level rating of up to BAL-40.

There are some manmade decking boards that are made from recycled materials, which add to their ‘green’ credentials, but most of them are more expensive than timber.
One advantage of manmade boards is that they resist stains, mildew and scratches, and do not splinter or rot. Some products stay cool and are anti-slip. Many have finishes that resemble timber, such as the quality resin and composite products, which look reasonably authentic and are less likely to fade than cheaper versions.
Most manmade decking is easy to lay, as all the boards are straight and the same length.
Most types are manufactured with a groove along the side and are fixed with a clip or similar concealed fastening system, which saves on labour costs as installation is relatively quick.
Some aluminium products can be laid flush, so there are no gaps between the boards, which can be useful when you want to use the area beneath a raised deck for storage.

Modular decking

Composite, pine or merbau modular decking is widely available. The prefabricated, modular project kits include a base frame, deck panels and fixings that you use a drill to assemble. Some of the systems have interlocking deck tiles that snap into place, and these can transform an existing concrete patio or balcony.

Garden desing materials deck

Cleaning & resurfacing

While hardwood timber decking can be left to weather to a natural grey, it’s usually oiled to protect it, and to show off the beautiful colour and grain of the timber. To clean the boards, pressure wash them or use a hard broom and water jet, then allow to dry before sealing. For decks that are very weathered, use a specialist wood cleaner to brighten the timber before re-coating. Marks on the boards may need sanding to erase them.
Transparent coatings show off the natural timber characteristics, or you can stain them to a more intense colour. After our experience of a lurid burgundy pine deck, we now follow the product instructions carefully, and stir the can well before applying. Use the brush or roller recommended by the manufacturer for the best result. Choose either an oil-based or water-based formula, and stick to that type of product for the life of the deck. If you want to change, you have to strip the timber back to bare wood and start again. Oil-based coatings penetrate the wood better. They also give the timber a ‘wet’ look and are more durable. Water-based coatings are environmentally friendly, have less odour and dry more quickly.


Also read: A GUIDE TO OUTDOOR DECORS.

 

21 Mar 2018

A GUIDE TO OUTDOOR DECORS

Outdoor living areas are finding more and more uses these days. They are much more than just extensions to an area. They can bring enjoyment to a home and provide a unique place in a home. Outdoor entertainment is a way of utilizing this unique area. Beautiful, well-constructed alfresco spaces close to entertainment areas serve as extensions to a home and create more value to a home. Outdoor extensions for indoor areas have existed for a while. But some interesting additions to these areas can create the perfect entertainment area that everyone will love.

OUTDOOR DECOR — SMART IDEAS

With outdoor spaces, you get more benefits from your home and you enjoy it more. In the past, outdoor spaces were only used once in a long while to entertain people. But there are ways, you can integrate your outdoor living area to your home and make them part of you. The best outdoor decor ideas merge the outdoor, indoor and landscape in a seamless blend. The outdoor decor must match the architecture of the house, the needs of the family and it must be easily changeable to meet various needs. A nicely designed outdoor space will meet the needs of a family and add to the resale value of a property.

A great outdoor living area makes a good impression on a home. The following are some outdoor decor ideas that will make a home look fabulous.

HEATING IN OUTDOOR DECORS

In the cold weather, it is hard to stay outdoors because of the blistering cold. But these can be changed with the addition of outdoor heating options that are now available. An outdoor space can be warmed easily with all the heating options available. There are various electric heaters that can be placed in braziers, chimineas, outdoor fire replacement, ceilings and walls mounts and other outdoor decor heating ideas. There is a need for cooling and heating to ensure that outdoor spaces are used efficiently regardless of the weather.

OUTDOOR DECOR — HEATING

OUTDOOR KITCHENS AND BARBECUES

Great furniture can transform a basic outdoor setting into a sensory-rich dining destination that makes
outdoor living even sweeter. Begin by thinking about how you would like your outdoor space to function and go from there Furniture style can range from one off built-in daybeds to very elaborate and expensive conversation pieces. Consider furniture styles and how they match the surroundings, as well as how comfortable and durable they are.

OUTDOOR DECOR — FURNITURE

OUTDOOR KITCHENS AND BARBECUES

Food from a barbecue tastes great. You can customize your outdoor kitchen and barbecue as you wish, selecting from various options. You need to decide how often you will be cooking outdoors and the type of foods you wish to cook. You will also need to select the extra features that you want. There are some outdoor decor ideas that involve recreating indoor kitchens outdoors with nice counter tops, sinks, warming trays, cabinets, dishwashers, outdoor grills etc.

OUTDOOR DECOR — BARBECUES & OUTDOOR KITCHENS

POTS, & PLANTS AND PLANTERS

You can beautify your outdoor living area with the use of outdoor decor like pots, plants and planters. Their shape, material and color make them nice for outdoor areas. They can be decorated nicely to transform a dour outdoor living area to a masterpiece. You can select any kind of plant. You just need to make sure that the plants fit in with your home. For those that don’t have much time, it is good to select low maintenance plants. Apart from decoration, plants can also serve other uses like privacy, windbreak, space definition and outdoor shades.

OUTDOOR DECOR — POTS, PLANTS & PLANTERS

 


Also read: TYPES OF GARDENS: Productive garden design.

 

07 Mar 2018

The right approach to create a Perfect garden design

Follow the rules
When you’re making any major changes to your garden, there’s one important guideline to consider – if in doubt about planning, check. One of the most common issues is removal of trees. If you want to cut one back or remove it, ask your local tree officer if it’s covered by a tree preservation order (TPO). If you’re in a conservation area they will be protected and you’ll need permission to fell or prune them. Front gardens have more restrictions than rear ones. For example, fences along a path or road are limited to a height of one metre without planning permission. Elsewhere, the boundary between you and your next-door neighbour can’t be higher than two metres. It’s always worth talking to your neighbours before commencing work to ensure good relations.
Finally, new houses often have covenants limiting what you can do, from putting up features to planting against a neighbour’s wall, so it’s worth checking it out before making a start.

Fix on finance

Having a budget really helps to focus the mind. Gardens, like any building work, can eat up housands of pounds. ‘Remember that it doesn’t all have to be done at once; staging the revamp can help to make it seem more do-able,’.But whatever job you decide to do first, always have a contingency of 5-10 per cent, just in case!

Wants and needs for a perfect garden design

When planning your job, it’s always best to begin with the simple question: What do I want? Maybe seating… If so, for how many people? Does it need to look good from the house? Perhaps you want
somewhere to store things to keep it tidy. Or do you need to create an area that’s safe and
appealing for children? ‘When you’re thinking about your priorities, be as specific as possible and you’ll limit and define exactly what you need to do. The clearer you are about what you want, the better the result will be.

Gather inspiration

Search through pictures in magazines, books and the internet for ideas. Pinterest is a great source and you can make your own boards of images that you like. Once you have a good selection, examine them closely so you’re able to identify two things – the overall theme and then the details. There will probably be some random choices, but are they mainly country or modern in style, dark
or light, cluttered or pared back? And then really focus in on the specifics. Take a close look at the materials, the shapes, the lighting and colours.
Flooring options
Careful detailing really makes a difference. If you’re creating a sitting area, think about both the look and the cost of paving – the price of the material itself and the cost of manpower to prepare the ground and lay it. Smoothand symmetrical paving looks more modern than riven, random shapes and patterns. Natural materials such as stone and timber work better in gardens than porcelain tiles and will look good over a longer period.
‘It pays to get the best quality materials as they have to last year after year. But it’s worth the investment. If you get the garden right, you’ll have an additional room to your house to enjoy. If paving is too expensive, consider gravel. Again, the details are important – gravel comes in different sizes, colours and shapes. Too big and it’s difficult to walk on, too small and it travels everywhere. Too dark and it will look dowdy, too pale and it doesn’t look real.

Zone in
Often the revamp will boil down to creating different areas in the garden, such as a place to sit, or a place for children to play. Make sure each space is large enough for the activity it will be hosting. A dining area, for example, will need to be big enough so that chairs can be pushed back from the table; a swing or slide for children will need a long clear area. Get hold of the dimensions of the tables, chairs or play equipment before you start work and mark them out on the ground to make sure you get it right.
Set the boundaries
These spaces would often benefit from being enclosed with plants such as shrubs or bamboos. However, a quicker way to divide the garden into different areas is to put up trellis screens.
Think about what sort of trellis to use. Consider the style of your surroundings; does your quaint country cottage call for something traditional such as diagonal trellis? Or perhaps your super-modern new-build requires something a little more contemporary, such as slatted panels.

Clear the clutter
Often a reason for gardens getting messy is lack of storage, so think about putting in a shed
that will work well in your space. It doesn’t have to be an eyesore to hide away. Some can
be beautiful given the right treatment. Give yours a lick of paint to complement your garden and this will extend its life too.
Add shelving inside to really get organised and make the most of your space.
Light your way
The key with lighting is Always to focus on what is being lit rather than the light itself. So light a tree, skim a wall,highlight a feature.
Draw attention to new elements you’ve included in the garden by lighting them up – whether it’s a water feature or a line of pots. Solar lighting is getting better but often the best time for garden lighting is on dull winter afternoons, and for that you’ll need conventional power. It’s always advisable to use a qualified electrician to install this.
Safety first
As children grow up you don’t need to worry quite so much about safety, but whatever their age, having standing water is a worry. Even if it’s very shallow it’s best to fence water off or put a sturdy grill at surface level. Another consideration in gardens is what material to use beneath play equipment: grass will wear out quickly; bark chippings will get kicked about.
Rubber tiles, mulch or bonded rubber are other options for safer landings. 
Essential extras
Don’t forget the finishing touches – pots, water features and ornaments. These can help draw the eye to a far corner of the garden, bring a sitting area to life and give structure. Always try to use them for a purpose, so three or five pots in a line will break up a wall and give a repeated pattern. A water feature next to a sitting area will visually give a reason for the seat to be there. An ornament at the end of a path acts as a view stopper, to prevent the lines of the path just fading away.

MAKE IT LOOK LARGER
Top tips on how to create some magic in tiny spaces:

  • Stick to pale colours for plants, paint and furnishings to bounce light around the garden
  • Avoid using small plants or materials. Larger paving stones, for example, will help to give a cleaner look
  • Try to make sure walls or fences look the same or work together so the space feels coherent and not cluttered

Also read: Adromischus (Crassulaceae).