Each year, new trends emerge – from fashion, to cars, to food. The same can be said about landscape design. While in years past trends may have pointed to topiary art or expansive lawns to be gazed upon, this year’s trends are all about maximizing the potential of our gardens and landscapes to spend more time in them. After all, as much enjoyment as we get out of perfecting our outdoor space, there’s not much that can beat a functionally beautiful yard.

Dual-Purpose Landscape Elements

Landscape elements have traditionally been added for their own contribution to the design or functionality it would bring to the landscape. This trend is instead all about creating a duality in purposes – or killing two birds with one stone. Not only are you adding an element that will contribute to your overall design and aesthetic, but you’re also adding one that will be functional in your space, too.

Perhaps you need a retaining wall, but you’d also like more seating or growing space. Why not transform your wall into a bench or a raised garden? Maybe you are looking to add more privacy, but also want to maximize your growing space for growing edibles. Consider a trellis with vines of tomatoes or beans! That is what this trend is all about – getting the full potential from your design elements and making the most of the space you have. Instead of compromise, it’s about getting the best of everything you want.

 

Landscaping for Low-Maintenance

As our schedules become increasingly filled and the days seem to never be long enough, it’s only natural to want to save time anywhere that we can – especially saving time so that we can take a step back and enjoy taking a deep breath for once. Thankfully, our landscapes are becoming one of the easiest places to shed time-consuming tasks both naturally and with the help of technology.

Low-maintenance gardening is one of the easiest and most natural ways to save time in the yard. By planting plants that won’t only work for you, but with you, you’ll spend less time nurturing your landscape, and more time enjoying it. For example, using more perennials will help to save on year-to-year replanting of annuals, while drought-tolerant plants will require less watering throughout the season and tend to be hardier. Native plants are also an excellent choice for saving time in the garden, as they are already naturally conditioned to withstand our Alberta climate without our help, meaning they grow without much interference from us at all. Plus, they also have the added benefit of creating a small ecosystem for pollinators, which are desperately on the decline and a benefit to our garden.

Automation is another time-saving effort that has grown in popularity in recent years, and it only makes sense. Everything from our light switches to our front door locks can be controlled from our digital devices nowadays, and as our homes become increasingly smarter, it only makes sense that our outdoor spaces at home would, too. Programmable irrigation systems can save us precious time with the hose on a hot day, while integrated lighting and electrical wiring can help us modernize and actually use the space we have access to, but without the hassle of cables and set up.

Creating an Oasis with Landscaping

In recent years, the backyard has been a space for extending the comforts of our home into the outdoor realm, with outdoor kitchens and dining areas stepping into centre-stage. Why not make the entirety of your property somewhere you want to live and enjoy, instead of just the indoors? However, this year’s trends have shifted that need for modernizing toward taking full advantage of the relaxation that can be found in nature.

Water features are a popular way to enhance relaxation and tranquility in the outdoor space. The sound of a trickling fountain has a way of just easing the mind. Staring at a reflection on the surface of a pond can give us pause and a sense of wonder. Alternatively,floating in a pool and staring up at the sky instead can give us the much-needed mindlessness we seek to become more mindful and energized the rest of the day.

In order to fully take advantage of our oasis, though, the need for privacy seems to come hand-in-hand. It can be hard to retreat into your natural space if you feel as though you are on display. Hedges, trees, and shrubbery make for a fantastic, natural solution to reducing exposure so you can find your inner peace while exploring nature in your own backyard. You’ll be safe from prying eyes, but without feeling fenced in.

This year’s landscape design trends are all about combining both the natural and unnatural to maximize our ability to use our outdoor spaces – to make our outdoor spaces somewhere we can spend more time enjoying. To explore these top trends or to discover more, speak with one of our landscape designers about how you can transform your space today!