There was once a time when Northern Irish gardens sat largely unused except for the sporadic BBQ upon the welcome sight of sun. However, Covid-19 brought a new appreciation for our outdoor space as we sought solace in getting outside and once again enjoying our gardens.
With the uncertainty around travel still firmly in place, 2021 is predicted to be the year of the staycation and so there has never been a better time to revamp your outdoor space and maximise your homes kerb appeal.
Ronan O’Dowd, Landscape Designer from AG Outside Rooms shares his top tips for making a great first impression of your outside space:
Despite our questionable weather, homeowners are now – more than ever before – embracing al fresco living and viewing their gardens as a true extension of their house, another room to eat, drink, play and relax in. However large or small your space is, here are some ways to get more out of your exterior:
Consider the house
Your house plays a critical piece of the puzzle when designing your outdoor space. The design and architecture of your home can help influence the space outdoors, for example a cottage style garden complements a country home whereas a minimalist garden helps set off a more modern or contemporary building.
Shine a spotlight on your garden by using hardscape elements to improve kerb appeal. Introducing curves and circles as well as different laying patterns and a range of colours and heights will add depth, interest, and colour to your garden. You could also give a new look to a border with tidy edging such as our bullnose kerb setts to retain your planting. If your garden is flat, plants will add more kerb appeal than small pretty flowers. Use repetitions (midsize shrubs to line a path or a row of shrubs) and choose pieces that are inspired by and complement the shape and size of the house. Choosing plants that reflect the shape and lines of the house will create an instant impact.
If the clean-cut look isn’t your thing then why not embrace nature. Gather stones and rocks in their natural state – jagged edges and all. Incorporating water features offset by large stones makes for an interesting addition to your garden. Something like our Country Cobble® paving water feature with an array of quarry stones at the base will give your garden a rugged feel.
Feast on nature
Edible gardening has grown in popularity – irrespective of whether you find yourself in an urban enclave or a country garden. Living walls and herbs in window pots are great if you are short of space and if you have a large garden why not try and grow your own vegetable patch. Not only do they look great, but they can also be used in daily living. Our brick and walling products can be used to complete the look.
Upgrade your BBQ area to a full outdoor working kitchen
Nothing says ‘wow’ like an outdoor kitchen area – and it means you won’t have to step inside and lose a moment of the fresh warm summer air, or the craic from a family gathering (when we are allowed those again!). At Outside Rooms, we can combine our walling and flag ranges to create fully functioning outdoor kitchens and bars. Our Kamden freestanding dry-build walling is a perfect choice and our TerraPave® flagstones create beautiful sleek countertops while the walling is ideal for workstations and storage.
Create a garden inspired by your favourite destination
Rest and relaxation doesn’t have to wait until your next holiday. Create a garden inspired by your favourite destination and you can escape all year round. Vanquish the stresses of everyday life with a tranquil zen paradise or opt for something bright with a striking Moroccan paradise. For a taste of Italy, our Canterra flagstones and Long Stone paving allow you to bring the feel of a beautiful Italian square to your own back garden.
Go grass free
If you want a low-maintenance approach then introducing paving, flagging and retaining wall systems may be the answer to your problems. These are easy to keep and provide a reliably flat surface to allow for family occasions. It also means children can play in all seasons without the risk of muddy feet!
If you want to revamp your outdoor space, then why not visit one of AG’s four Outside Room Centres in Northern Ireland.
To find out more visit: https://ag.uk.com/outside-rooms