When homeowners think about their home’s yard and landscaping, they often think of the most obvious elements — grass and flowers, for example. But a home that truly shines will have a variety of outdoor features blended together to create beauty, add practical uses your family can enjoy, and enhance the home’s value. That means planning for more than just greenery, but also stonework, lighting, and other features often referred to as “hardscaping.”
With the right combination of hardscaping features and greenery, your home will provide you with enjoyment and impress guests. So, let’s take a look at what hardscaping is and how hardscape elements help your home exterior stand out from the crowd.
What Does “Hardscaping” Mean?
Hardscaping — or hardscape — is one of two key elements of your landscaping. It consists of the elements of your landscaping that are not green and growing. (The greenery is called softscape, and it’s the other key part of your outdoor areas.)
Hardscape can include any features made of non-organic or static materials that don’t change, such as:
- Brick walls
- Stone pathways
- Wood decks
- Cement patios
Why Is Hardscaping Important to Your Home’s Outdoor Areas?
There are three ways hardscape elements add to your outdoor enjoyment:
1. Lovely Appearance
A beautiful landscaping design for a home includes a variety of features that balance each other and are visually interesting. And the human eye is drawn to notice things that are different. So, when you combine something soft, like a bed of flowers, with something hard and textured, like a stone wall, your eye is drawn to that area and finds it appealing.
2. Personalized Style
Hardscape also adds dimension, movement, and flow to your home, allowing you to design your yard to accommodate your needs and preferences. If you like flowing water, for example, installing a fountain is a great way to use hardscaping to bring your desires to life.
Often, your home exterior can benefit from features that improve the livability of your outdoor spaces. A deck or fencing, for example, can give you more enjoyment of your backyard, while pathway lighting by your driveway and front door can make it easier for guests to visit.
Different Hardscape Features to Make Your Outdoor Spaces Shine
When considering how to add to the beauty and usefulness of your outdoor areas, there are many types of hardscaping elements you can invest in. Here’s a quick overview of options you may enjoy:
Patios and Decks
These outdoor areas add living space to your home and allow for more comfortable ways to relax and entertain. You can customize the space in many ways:
- Building materials — concrete, brick, wood, tile and others
- Screening — closed-in, partially open, completely open
- Unique features — built-in grill, outdoor refrigerator and more
Walkways and Driveways
Enhancing your home’s practical use often comes down to adding features to where you park and walk. You might choose to add:
- Stone paths in garden areas
- Flagstones leading to your front entrance
- Stone steps in front or back yard
Retaining walls allow you to maximize sloped yards by keeping soil in place, preventing erosion and collapse of landscaping, and encouraging proper drainage away from your home foundation. They also:
- Come in many materials — decorative concrete, brick, dry-stacked stone, wood
- Can serve other functions such as seating
Flowerbeds and Terraces
Well-designed landscaping elements such as raised flowerbeds, sculpted bushes, terraces for different types of plants and more can elevate your home’s curb appeal.
- Consider other decorative features too. Pergolas add eye-catching variety to a yard, as do gazebos and other elements.
- Hire a professional landscaper skilled in creative designs that maximize your home’s layout and architecture.
Adding lights to your outdoor areas can create beautiful effects and also make your home more secure.
- Pathway and driveway lighting allows for safer walking at night.
- Bright areas around your home discourage thieves from sneaking around.
- Special features such as a water fountain, favorite tree, or unique entryway design can be illuminated with landscape lighting to capture attention.
Homeowners and guests alike enjoy the lovely sounds and dancing appearance of water flowing on a property. Some popular water features include:
- Manmade ponds or streams
- Decorative fountains
- Rubber linings can be installed to prevent water runoff
- Water features can stand alone or have plants growing in or around them
The Value of Working with a Professional Landscaping Designer
Incorporating hardscaping effectively and attractively requires some definite thought and planning. After all, it’s meant to be more than functional — it’s meant to add vibrancy and charm to your outdoor spaces. An expert in outdoor design knows how to:
- Create a beautiful, eye-catching style that enhances your home’s architecture.
- See potential in your property that you may not have realized, and help you craft a plan to bring it to fruition.
- Incorporate a variety of building materials that look great together and complement your greenery too.
- Install features so that everything performs as it should — such as proper drainage of water away from your home foundation.
- Give you expert advice on which features will work best for your area’s unique needs — such as tips on plants and hardscape products that perform well in Tulsa’s wet springs and hot summers.
- Accomplish the work swiftly and seamlessly, saving you time and effort.
- So, why not invest in consulting with a professional landscaper who knows how to help you get the best out of your home?
Invest in Hardscaping that Beautifies Your Home
A beautiful landscaping design elevates your Tulsa home to the next level, impressing guests and enhancing your enjoyment of your home’s outdoor features. So, why not call on the creative, detailed team at ProActive Landscaping? We’ll view your home and plan with you how to incorporate hardscaping, lighting, and any other features you desire to make your home exterior shine. Contact us for a free quote on your landscaping projects today.