Patios and Pathways:
Developing Hardscape In The Residential Garden
Whether creating a simple pathway or a lush outdoor living space, having a good “ground game” is important in ensuring your hardscape project is a success.
Your Santa Barbara hardscape contractor can help you choose the right materials, design a layout that is appropriate for the space, and install a project that will be gorgeous and functional for the long term.
Like any element in the garden, paving is integral to the design–a crucial part of the overall picture and style. Select a material to enhance your design and address the architecture of your home. Draw perhaps from the look of your home itself, such as its brick or stone, or choose a more rustic material—perhaps in a muted shade—to allow flowering and accent plant material to stand out. If visualizing the final look is difficult, contact a paving representative—or ask your contractor—and request samples that will give you a better idea of the materials’ size, texture, and colors.
Be sure, too, that the layout is well designed. Study the way you move about your property and how you anticipate using the outdoor spaces.
Consider these questions:
• Will the layout allow you to access key points efficiently without giving way to shortcuts through your planted beds?
• By the same token, is the “journey” along the path interesting, opening views to surprise focal points as you follow the path?
• Is it wide enough to comfortably allow one to two people to pass through?
• Have you considered the mobility of your anticipated guests and does this consideration beg a smoother paving material?
• Is your patio space large enough to comfortably fit your outdoor furnishings and can it seat the maximum number of guests you might like to entertain?
Ask your hardscape contractor
which is the right installation method for your use. Share with him or her the “programming” of your space, such as whether you plan to place a hot tub upon it, or eventually build a pergola. Special base preparation or footers can be included in the design to accommodate these features.