Design a Garden Shed for Comfort and Functionality

Garden sheds are popular these days, and their purpose can range all the way from storing garden tools and supplies to creating a comfortable spot for rest, relaxation and reading. Some garden sheds can also fill the role of a “she shed” for the lady of the house, or they may focus on storage and function for the gentleman gardener. The great thing about creating your own shed is that it can be designed to meet your particular needs and desires.

The first step in building a garden shed is determining the size, location and function. Whether you build the shed yourself or hire a contractor, you will need to have a detailed plan. If the purpose of the shed is simply to support gardening activities, you will need adequate and appropriate storage for garden tools. These tools may include everything from tillers, wheelbarrows, shovels, rakes and hand tools. Proper storage for a supply of small hand tools and electrical cords will also be needed. Counter space is also necessary for potting plants, starting seedlings and other activities that require a work space. Shelves built above the counter can hold items used only occasionally such as books, extra pots, etc.

Garden sheds that double as a “she shed” are likely to focus less on gardening than a comfortable place to read, visit with friends or enjoy a cup of tea. Some women decorate their shed as their own little get-away space, but they may also use it as a work area for growing and maintaining flower gardens in the landscape. The area should include a couple comfortable chairs, lighting sources and cabinets and counter space for storage and working on various projects.

The exterior of a garden shed should add to the aesthetic appeal of the landscape no matter what purpose it has. There are various plans homeowners can choose from, or the plan can be created by whoever intends to use it. The shed should have enough windows to provide good light within, and a simple front porch adds to the design. Wiring the shed for electricity makes operating electrical tools very convenient and can be a source of light and heat on cool and cloudy days.

Some homeowners have the knowledge and ability to build their own garden shed, but others may be wise to hire a contractor to make sure the project is done properly. Small garden sheds that simply provide storage space for garden tools and perhaps a lawnmower do not require electricity or plumbing, but running water and electricity are convenient in a “she shed”. In this case, the services of an electrician and plumber will be required. It is also possible to purchase a pre-built garden shed at the local builders supply store, and this is probably the best idea if the purpose of the shed is simply storage. However, planning and building a more elaborate garden shed offers an enjoyable place to spend time, and the building will also increase the value of the property.

Five Steps for Designing Your Patio Garden

Patios are outdoor spaces that typically belong to a residence and are often paved. You’ll find patio’s attached to homes, businesses, and apartments. Sometimes the areas are big, and other times they are small, as is often the case with apartment patios. No matter the size, a patio garden is designed a bit different than regular gardens. Here are five steps for designing your patio garden.

1. Examine the Size of Your Patio

As we mentioned above, patios come in different sizes. Is your’s a large or a small patio? The size will play a big part in your design choice. Take a piece of paper and map out the size of your patio and where you would like plants and flowers. Or choose a template to perform such a task online.

2. Include Plants in Containers

No matter the size of your patio, plants or flowers in containers are a favorite design choice. Go with large pots with a variety of flowers within for large patio spaces. Choose smaller versions for smaller patio spaces. Small patio spaces, for example, can benefit from a multitude of potted plants. In fact, they can represent the bulk of your patio plant life.

3. Focus on the Quality of the Plants Rather Than the Quantity

Even though you may be able to buy a multitude of plants for your patio, the quality of the plants is more important than the quantity. Choose only healthy plants from reputable dealers. Don’t choose plants that look dull and dry, even if they are on sale. Always focus on choosing plants that are healthy and thriving.

4. Determine if Your Space Requires Sun, Shade or Both

Some patio spaces are covered, others are not. Before you choose your plants, you’ll need to determine how much sun your patio gets. Plants that are intended for the shade are typically suited for covered patios or patios that get enough shade. Plants that are intended for the sun may not do well in sheltered conditions.

5. Choose Plants in Your Zone

No matter whether you choose plants for sun or shade, you must select plants only suited to your zone. A hardiness zone or zone is your location’s climate in relation to plants and flowers. For example, some plants that grow in San Diego, California (10a/10b) may not grow in Chicago, Illinois (6a). Go online and locate a hardiness zone to determine the zone for your area and then buy plants accordingly.

In San Diego, Agave and Jupiter’s Beard, for example, are hardy. In Chicago, hostas, and tulips, for example, are hardy. Most plants come with a zone indicator when you purchase them. Also, if you are buying your plants at a local plant store, they will sell plants that correspond with your zone.

Having a patio garden is not only beautiful, but gardening and maintaining your patio garden can turn into a fun and calming hobby. Plan everything out and buy the correct plants for the highest chance of success.

9 Beautiful Backyard Ideas for Small Yards

Have a small back garden? Don’t worry. There are plenty of beautiful outdoor designs that can not only make your yard look double the size, but also stun quests with cool settings.

The secret to designing for a small yard, is to take into consideration how important space is. Space is limited, so its best to use every bit of it in the best way possible.

Furniture is also vital, too much can make it look cluttered and too little can make it look un-homely. Here with have listed 9 backyards that have perfected using up small space to look good.

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Here we have a small garden which looks far bigger than it actually is. The utilisation of a table and chairs with circular tiling gives the area an element of exclusivity. This means the rest of the garden looks much more spacious with stepping stones, steps, and even a green area. The divide also makes it look like two separate yards – again, making it look larger.

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A small, simple but effective garden. The blue stones already make this yard a showpiece – but it has to be done right! Luckily they have done just that. The tiles flowing through give it a unique impression and the flowerbeds enhance this perception. The way the bed wraps round as a border makes it seem as if there is more space and the garden is longer and wider.

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This is a very small area. But, they have utilised every tiny part of it. The three pieces of furniture are vital to make it seem homely despite be so small. The plant plots also give it a warmer impression, to show that people actually live here.

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I’m a big fan of this one. They only have a tiny amount of space, but they use it really well. The sleek, neatly trimmed grass gives it a modern feel, and the two sun loungers help this impression. The small tree rounds the whole scene off really well and the matching wall is just as impressive.

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A more extravagent design for a small backyard. The red sofas and chairs make it stand out from the others, and the grey tiles and black furniture only help this view. The BBQ means this yard is summer-ready and the wooden fencing makes it seem exclusive.

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Imagining that this small area with the outdoor furniture is the only part of the garden available, they have done a pretty good job with the space. Simplicity is key, as I said earlier, and this often means some furniture, some greenery and tiles – and they’ve constructed it perfectly.

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Another very small space, but it shows what furniture can do. Although this might not be the most stunning example, it portrays the element of simplicity and how it ties in with small yards. To make it better I would re-tile the landscape, and re-plant to have flowerbeds instead.

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This is a personal favourite. Imagine guests arriving, expecting a mundane furniture/tile combination, and arriving a this gorgeous waterfall which wouldn’t look amiss as a landmark. Water features are vital if you want your yard to stand out and this is the holy grail. However, there would be significant costs and maintenance to build and keep up such a beautiful feature.

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There’s been a lot of talk about brick tiles, however, when done properly wood can be the most effective material for a garden. Not only does it look sleek and modern, but it ensure the yard ties in with a naturalistic feel. The furniture in the middle matches perfectly with the surrounding colours and plant life, while keeping natural space to enhance the perception of size.

5 Cool Backyard Fire Pit Ideas

Backyard fire pits aren’t just aesthetically pleasing. They are handy too. Their versatility means that one day you could be inviting friends round for a summer barbecue, then in the winter having a bonfire with family and blankets.

When done right, a fire pit with matching furniture or surroundings can really be beautiful. And mix this with the heuristic image of burning wood, can create a surreal attraction.

Whether you are going for a modern, antique, rustic or even wood panel look, a fire pit could be the extra touch you need to make your backyard the staple of the american. Bit too far? We don’t think so. Here we have listed 5 cool backyard fire pits as examples.

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This rustic feel fire pit is large and powerful. As you can see, the fading tiles are the same all around the surrounding landscape, and tie into the classic feel. The blues and oranges are more natural shades and really complement the wood chairs.

Can’t you imagine yourself coming home from work after a long summers day, and chilling next to the fire with a glass of wine in hand? We definitely can.

This owner seems to have a lot more land than he knows what to do with, with the forestry area in the background. However, this could be intentional. The contrast in infrastructure and nature creates a peaceful effect. (Unless you’re scared about wild animals coming up behind you as you sip your red!)

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My personal favourite, contemporary design mixed with old traditional values. The modern feel is enhanced by the clean, black and blue fire pit in the centre. The sleekness of the two-colour showpiece allows the retro shape to be noticed.

Not only is it attractive, but the blue stones make the fire pit stand out from the surrounding black and white furniture. This is most likely a restaurant area, but the feel could definitely be snatched and placed in your own backyard. The only costs would be the seating area and fire pit, as long as your floor landscape is all matching and neat, or wooden.

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Similar to the first one, this fire pit uses rustic techniques with large bricks. It creates the antique feel that contrasts the modernity of a fire pit. The plants can divide opinion. Although there definitely is a need for some flower landscapes in this garden, you could argue the owner hasn’t thought to carefully about which ones and where he plants them. A better alternatives could be plant pots scattered around the area.

As you can see, there is padding on top of the surrounding wall, meaning guests can sit around it in summer. This also matches the stone flooring and wooden walkway. All the colours are in similar shades and complement the whole scene quite well.

Ignore the hot dogs, okay look if you want, this fire pit is unarguably one of the most surreal looking designs. The wonky-modern tiling creates a stunning feel. It looks like this one is in a field somewhere, but would not look amiss in your back garden. The wooden benches are also an important part of the scene as a whole, as they add to the natural look.

I can imagine countless summer nights huddling round this fire with friends and family sharing burgers and hotdogs (I’m hungry now!). A pit like this would cause envy in your inner circle, so be aware!

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An extremely unique yet modern design. This fire pit is inside a whole in your garden. As long as you have the space underneath, it can be an easier task to create. However, just make sure you don’t fall in!