Tag Archive for: Backyard Ideas

Take Your Property Look to a Whole New Level With the Right Turf Solution

The right turf solution can take an outdoor space to a whole new level. Not only can it elevate a space’s design, but it can improve its functionality all while providing a lower-maintenance alternative to grass.

But, with so many turf options to pick from, how do you know which solution is right for you? That’s where we come in. As outdoor experts, State of the Art knows the ins and outs of turf options.

That’s why we’ve outlined the best solutions below and how they can enhance your property.

1. Gravel

For a fluid and low-maintenance option, gravel is your best bet. Gravel provides owners with a quick and simple tuft solution that’s super easy to install.

Gravel also seamlessly meshes with a bunch of design styles; fitting in easily with both traditional and contemporary looks. However, we recommend it’s best to keep it to small and enclosed areas. That is because large open spaces filled with gravel tend to be boring and impractical.

So, for best results, we recommend using it in smaller garden areas (such as front yards), or areas where mowing can be difficult. We also suggest adding plenty of plants and flowers to the space so there will be some color and interest.

2. Bark

If there are areas of your yard that struggle to get sunlight and end up dry and dying, consider adding bark. That’s because bark won’t die even in the darkest corners of your yard (such as under trees, or in between structures). So, for a natural-looking option, we suggest choosing a natural stripped pine bark and adding as much greenery as possible.

To install, simply spread eight to ten centimeters over the soil. But, keep in mind that bark does require regular maintenance as it will likely need a topping up every year.

3. Artificial Grass

Artificial grass is a favorite when it comes to a turf solution. That’s because this option provides a natural look without all the hassle that comes along with maintaining real grass.

Just remember that all varieties of artificial grass aren’t made the same. So, be sure to shop around for color and style that works for your space as the shades can vary.

It might also be a good idea to consider what the space will be used for and how much direct contact you might have with it as many find it less comfortable underfoot.

If you do decide to proceed with the installation, it’s important to note that the larger the space the more likely you will need to hire professionals to help. That’s because bigger spaces require the ground to be leveled and paved.

4. Smart Paving

Another turf solution that owners may want to consider when redoing their space is smart paving. Materials like stone, brick, or even concrete make a great alternative when it comes to traditional grass. That’s because these alternatives can make a great base for a courtyard. In turn, drastically changing the space to be more functional by being able to put down more seating areas, gathering spaces and dinner tables.

Given how many paving options there are, owners can match the building material to their unique sense of style; choosing a design that works for them. For traditional patios we suggest opting for more natural textures like sandstone or limestone. Whereas more modern properties can experiment with different styles by using things such as concrete and quartz.

Regardless of what you end up choosing, we always suggest avoiding the use of multiple materials in a single space. Otherwise, it can end up looking busy and cluttered.

5. Decking

The final tuft solution to consider is decking. Not only is decking a great way to define a space and create a more livable area but it is actually a perfect solution for sloping or awkwardly shaped lawns. That’s because it can help to level out an area without all the hassle and money it takes to do it to the ground.

Instead, installing a deck is a cost-effective and quick way to create a usable surface that’s perfect for dining, lounging, or gathering. Plus, there are plenty of decking materials that owners can choose from ranging from hardwoods to no-maintenance composite lookalikes.

Ultimately, whatever turf option you decide to opt for, it’s guaranteed to transform your space. If you’re an owner and are considering upgrading your space, speak with a member of our team today by calling 703-421-3666 or emailing admin@stateoftheartlandscape.com.

The Ultimate Guide to Perfectly Designed Pergolas & Pavilions

Whether it’s to host events, get some quiet, or BBQ a pergola is a great addition to any space. These features offer owners an extension of livable space that can be fully customized to suit unique needs and style preferences. 

But, there are some key things to consider before installing. That’s exactly why we’ve come up with the ultimate guide to designing one below.

The Position

 It might seem obvious, but choosing a position for a pergola or pavilion is critical to its function. This is especially true if it will be added to a feature already in the yard (like a pool, dining area, outdoor kitchen).

Also, consider things such as privacy, and what the position means for it. For example, if you are looking for a space to get away, consider moving it further from the home.

Otherwise, installing the feature without thinking of its position can ruin the entire function of the backyard.

Building Materials

 There are a number of building materials that pergolas and pavilions can be built with. From something modern and sleek like aluminum to timeless and natural like timber; the material can have a serious impact on its appearance and longevity.

When picking a material, we always suggest figuring out the budget, intent of use, and weather concerns. All of these factors will likely have an impact on what material is chosen. For example, places with harsh winters and strong winds will likely need a more durable material to withstand the elements.

Lighting

 A feature of pergolas and pavilions that is often overlooked is the lighting. But, lighting can make a space seem more inviting, safer, and usable. So, consider adding features like the ground or overhead lights. These simple upgrades will really amplify the space and make it usable regardless of the time of day.

Roof Options

It’s not only the building material that you’ll need to think of when designing a pergola or pavilion but the roof of it as well. The roof is a key part of its design that cannot be overlooked. After all, roofs for these features come in all types of designs and styles.

For example, owners can pick a simple flat roof for a timeless aesthetic. Or, they can opt for a pitched roof with a more decorative and custom-edge to it. If neither of these seems like a good option, owners can even choose a retractable or fully open roof. That way, sunshine, and natural light can be enjoyed all year round.

Regardless, it’s best for owners to explore the many options that are available to them when it comes to the roof. Otherwise, agreeing to a design before scoping your options can leave you with serious buyers’ remorse.

Layout

One of the first things to do before selecting a pergola or pavilion is to think of what you want to use it for. For example, it might be intended as a dining area and used to host guests. Or, you might want to use it as a place to get some quiet and privacy.

Regardless of what you want it for, the intended use will likely alter the size and layout of the design. For hosting parties and dinners, it will need to be big enough to fit tables and chairs. Plus, you may even want to take it a step further by adding a BBQ or kitchen element to it. Whereas a pergola meant for privacy will likely be smaller in size with enclosed walls and a roof that is big enough to fit a single lounge chair and table.

Permits for Pergolas and Pavillions

The final thing owners should think of before installing anything on their property is if it is permitted. This means owners should be checking with their local building authorities to ensure that what they intend to build on their property meets the code. Otherwise, it could be in violation of local bylaws. This is especially true for owners who are installing a structure with electricity as these typically require a special permit. So, be sure to contact your local board to confirm if the pergola you want is allowed.

But, if you don’t want to go through the trouble of contacting the board on your own, consider partnering with a professional like us at State of the Art Landscaping. We can assess, customize, and build you the pergola or pavilion of your dreams.

If you’re interested in seeing how your property can benefit from one of our designs, consider getting in touch by contacting us today.