A patio is a great way to expand the usable space of the house and connect the indoors and outdoors. The appeal and usability of a patio are not only dependent on its size, although that is important. The design, layout, access and the look of the area around it, all impact the utility and feel of the patio. These are the key factors in making a great patio that a professional landscaping company will always keep in mind:
- Size: Homeowners with limited outdoor space often make the mistake of designing a patio that is the wrong size. If it is too small, its utility and the comfort of those spending time there will be compromised. But making it too big can be just as bad. If this happens, the patio will not blend in with the house and will stick out like a sore thumb. Not having enough green area around it will also detract from the appeal of the patio. The right design can often compensate for a small patio.
- Walkways: If the yard is large, then walkways are a good way of connecting the patio to the more distant parts of the yard. The material used for the walkway need not be the same as the patio paving, but it should not present a glaring contrast either. Keep the width of the walkway in mind –3 feet is normal but if 4 feet is possible then that makes accommodating wheel barrows, lawnmowers, garbage cans, etc. easier. Using the same style of lighting for the patio and the walkways will add a feel of continuity over the area.
- Piecemeal Work: Creating a large patio takes time and money. For this reason, those with large open areas often think of starting small and adding on to the patio when time and money permit. This sounds like a good idea but making a patio in stages may end up costing more than getting the whole job done in one go. However, if this is the way you want to go, ensure that you have an overall patio design in place so that each stage of the work fits seamlessly into the whole and the completed patio does not have a haphazard, disconnected look.
- The Wrong Plants and Shrubs: The type of foliage around the patio is a matter of personal taste. However, a common mistake is to place oversize plants around the patio to give it a “green” feel. This will not work. It will only serve to isolate the patio from the rest of the open area and make it feel less open. Finding the right foliage for the open space around the patio is critical for the overall look and feel.
- Connecting Indoors and Outdoors: There should be a seamless connection from the interior to the exterior. While the feel of the patio will be different from the indoors, it must also feel like an integral part of the house. Using flooring and colors that connect the inside with the out is the simplest way of providing continuity between the indoors and the patio.
Also Read: Choosing a Picnic Table for Your Patio
The key to creating a great patio is to remember that this is a place not where you have to spend time, but where you want to be. If you want the most attractive and appealing patio as part of your home, the right way to do it would be to use the services of a professional landscape designer who includes paver installation among his specialization. This, coupled with beautifully landscaped surroundings, will make it a patio that you will hate to leave.