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Extraordinary Landscape Design

Where design and craftsmanship artfully converge

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Landscape Design /Garden Design 

Outdoor Rooms: 9 Powerful Ways 
to Enduring Elegance

Your starting point to insightful landscape design ideas that make home feels more special and blissfully inviting. Rewarding to all those fascinated with form, function, and materials. This article and its examples encapsulate the dynamic process  of integrating diverse elements into a unified and splendid whole. Read on to discover some of the most amazing designs that exude enduring elegance.

Published on JULY 8 20212 6:58AM
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Nothing says "welcome" like an inviting entrance. A gate offers visual appeal and so much more.

The Role of a Gate in Landscape Design

A gate serves as a stunning addition to complement one’s home or landscape. There are many reasons why homeowners choose to invest in a gate for their property—from an entryway to various parts of a landscape to safety and privacy and curb appeal. Whether made of wood, steel, or wrought iron, the visual appeal of a gate leaves a memorable impression, certainly a way to artfully announce that you are about to enter a very special residence. 

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Iconic estate with over a century of historic and architectural significance seems to have every bell and whistle a family could imagine. Out the kitchen's swinging screened door is a sprawling courtyard equipped with the luxuries and conveniences of modern day life—with lawns and patios for lounging and alfresco dining, kitchens under overhead roofs, grills, cabinets, sinks, pool, a pool house, and a custom natural stone fireplace to create a wonderful indoor/outdoor living experience in the fresh air—making outdoor space as important as the interior. 

The Outdoor Room Concept

Much like indoor rooms, for dining, entertaining, relaxing, working, or playing, the outdoor room is as much architecture as it is garden. Courtyards, of course, are the most familiar and oldest type of outdoor room. The homes of ancient Greece and Rome, for example, were frequently designed around a central open space, as were medieval castles and the palaces of Moorish Spain. During the fourteenth-century, however, the outdoor room “escaped” the courtyard. The Renaissance Italian Villa was encompassed by its garden—a series of enclosed compartments used much like an annex to interior living spaces. Even so, the villa was a house within a garden. The modern outdoor room eliminates this separation and forms a total living space where house and garden merge. Because it is the most architectural of garden styles, the outdoor room is best described in house-like terms. As with rooms inside a house, these garden counterparts have walls, floors, ceilings, doors and furnishings. Sometimes these are structural elements, or they may be adaptations of the gardening palette.

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The harmonious atmosphere of this blissfully inviting Landscape is defined by its informal, organic design movements and sweeping open spaces. One way to approach a garden plan is to think of the styles that most appeal to you, but they themselves developed in response to the sense of place.

A Compelling Narrative Through Harmonization
of Precise Details

In landscape design the intention of a space dictates meaningful ways to engage the user by providing the framework for design resolutions, including dictating forms, design gestures, delineation of uses, and how movement through the spaces is choreographed. A well-defined concept, often thought of as a theme in landscape, is key to creating aesthetically pleasing outcomes—rendered through precise harmonization of proportion, order, repetition, and unity. It's indeed a layered, complex and nuanced process. One’s adeptness in the dynamic process of integrating those diverse elements into a whole contribute to the total impression of charm, thereby demonstrates the quality of attention manifest there. The lack thereof prevents a clear and simple template for any project at hand, therefore can prevent a unifying and cohesive impact on the overall harmony between the dwelling and the land. 

A small fountain allows the sound of trickling water to evoke relaxation.In planning a fountain, think of sight---how high the water should rise, how wide the basic should be, how many different levels and layers there should be, and at what angles the jets should be set. Also consider sound. Water can be "played" with lovely results, but it produces a very persistent noise, and in most circumstances shouldn't be encouraged to drown out all the surrounding sounds.

Water Feature in Garden Design

Water is captivating: it grabs our attention and lures us to its cool edges. It is usually far more compelling than any other garden feature, and its treatment is therefore one of the most important details of a garden's design. Fountains are emphatic and commanding focal points in the bodies of water from which they arise. They can have one or two elements: Always, there is the water itself, which can be forced into powerful jets or allowed to gurgle gently; often, there is some form of sculpture, which may serve as the water's source, or be purely decorative. The most ornate fountains are spectacular affairs with multiple tiers of water and monumental sculpture, like the Basin of Apollo at Versailles. Some of the most humble and understated fountains are found in Japanese gardens, where a rock with a depression on top may catch water dripping from a bamboo pipe. In between the two extremes there are fountains in every conceivable size and shape. The best ones work in the context of the body of water with which they are associated and the character of the surrounding garden.Elaborate waterworks are most effective in very simple spaces, generally; where the plan or planting is complex, on the other hand, the water feature should be relatively simple. Any fountain with a towering jet should be placed so that the jet falls between the sun and the spectator, at some time of day, creating a scintillating, luminous scene. 


There are plenty of ways to maximize small-space landscaping ideas. Limited space indeed is a garden pain point but certainly does not mean it’s impossible to create an aesthetically pleasing and meaningful design. Therefore to connect at a deeper level with nature----engage the senses by way of touch, sight, hearing, smell, and  taste. People are sensory beings, we communicate and interact with the natural environment through our senses.

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A pergola articulates the transition between house and garden, merging interior comforts with outdoor pleasures. It is an ideal place for alfresco dining. Overhead, a pergola can be filled in to make a solid, waterproof roof, or left as a series of beams, suggesting (rather than creating) a protective canopy. Climbing plants and vines bring the garden onto and into the pergola, and soften the structure's lines.

An Outdoor Room Designed For
a Sensory Experience

Throughout time, pergolas have served many purposes. And understandable so! They seem to beckon you in. It’s only natural that the pergola is a favorite for defining an “outdoor room.”  intricate or as simple, pergolas are available in many shapes, sizes, and a number of customizable elements to perfectly express one’s idea of the ultimate “outdoor room”—with design details carefully chosen to create an intentionally design space—a pergola that is unique as your needs will integrate seamlessly with the look of your home.

Intentionally designed "outdoor rooms" provide a source of great enjoyment for many—a pergola with a fireplace to provide warmth when it’s cool with a hint of chill provides an ideal setting not only for alfresco dining but also for vining plants to flourish while providing shade and cozier private spaces for the guests below. Favorites include climbing roses, wisteria, honeysuckle, climbing hydrangea and grape vine. Considering it is often our other senses especially touch and smell—that provide us with the most meaningful and memorable experiences, if you apt for something truly marvelous, adorn your pergola with rose and crab apple. The latter among the most prized of ornamental trees and the scent of these two in bloom is magical—after all, nature’s way of creating things are very magical—so prepare to be entranced by the magic of nature.

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An extended rose arbor suggests a long, low tunnel, providing a sweetly scented, shady canopy from which to admire shrubs and perennials in the adjacent beds.

An Impactful Structure to Lend
Charm and Character to Outdoor Spaces

Another structure commanding equally visual interest wherever it stands with climbers trained to climb up both sides and tumble over the roof, the arbor provides maximum exposure to the sun. Grapes and roses are the classic clothing for arbors, but the possibilities are limitless. Vining plants range from the sublime to the commonplace: Wisteria, passion flowers (Passiflora spp), morning glories (lpomoea spp), and scarlet runner beans (Phaseolus coccineus) flourish on arbors, and even tomatoes and squashes can be trained to climb overhead. Arbors, being linear, are logical canopies for garden paths, where they provide a cool, fragrant shade embellished by clusters of ripening grapes or views through backlit sprays of pastel-colored  Free-standing garden structures are more fanciful and can be treated as sculptural elements in terms of form and placement. They belong in pleasant settings---a promontory with a commanding view, the edge of a brook or pond, or a sunny clearing in the midst of a dark stand of trees. Ideally, the addition of an architectural feature further defines and enhances the picturesque setting.

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Atmospheric setting defined by magnificent sculptural trees, strong lines, and refined proportions.Statues are often associated with pools, and they do add interest. In this example, a pair of handsome stone urns are every bit as striking.The character of the space depends largely on the form of enclosure. Walls and fences, for example, give a formal highly architectural effect, as do tall chipped hedges. An untrimmed hedge, on the other hand, creates a softer, less precise effect. Lines of trees may also frame the edges of an outdoor room, much as a colonnade defines the limits of a porch.

An Impactful Focal Point in Landscape Design

A pool is another beautiful example of a compelling narrative through harmonization of precise details as reflected by show-casing a clear shape, strong lines, refined proportion and stately softscaping. The power of a rich collection of lush trees enlivened by soothing color and texture can help to maintain a calm, tranquil and beautiful atmosphere—a sure way to add visual intrigue to a pool surroundings. Conceptualizing this degree of cohesive design reflects all of the personalized elements that create a truly distinctive experience for the homeowner. 

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The power of magnificent evergreen enlivened by soothing color and texture help to maintain a calm, tranquil and beautiful atmosphere. 

Idyllic Landscape Designed to Evoke Serenity 

Contrast and harmony, color, balance, line, proportion, repetition and rhythm are pretty much incorporated here to create a refuge of exceptional quality, privacy, and beauty of this wine country estate. Elegantly groomed grounds with pool/spa and gazebo adorned with the inspiring beauty of Italian cypress----boasting its narrow and elegant silhouette----second to none when it comes to landscape luxuriance.

Color sensations affect the unconscious mind and most people are less aware of the great influence color has on them. A person may be unconscious of the colors around and yet be profoundly affected by them in regards to mood, temperament, and behavior. Where does the power of color originate and why it plays an important role in our daily lives? Possibly this feeling results from our contact with nature. The flowers appear in a thousand hues, and the hills are of ever-varying tints. What a barren world ours would appear, were the ground, the hills, the trees and the flowers, the sky and the waters all of one color! Form we should have, and that in its richest variety; light and shade we should have, with ever-varying intensity and change; but color would be gone. There would be no green to cheer, no blue to soothe, no red to excite; and, indeed, there would be a deadness, although the world be full of life, so appalling that we can scarcely conceive of it, and cannot feel it.

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The virtues of nature positively impact our health and wellbeing.

The Use of Gardens, Landscapes as Therapy
is Ancient

It comes as no surprise that the virtues of nature positively impact our health and wellbeing—from calming and motivating us to improving sleep patterns and regulating serotonin levels. There is evidence that shows correlation between engagement with nature and health and wellbeing. After all, landscaping was used in the past as a therapeutic instrument before the advances in medical technology. Additionally, recent events in alternative medicines have once again introduced the use of gardens as a healer. Scholarly research carried out to promote the therapeutic benefits of gardens found that viewing natural scenes or elements foster stress recovery by evoking positive feelings, reducing negative emotions, effectively holding attention interest, and blocking or reducing stressful thoughts (Ulrich, 2000 in SULIS, 2006

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