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Creating a Backyard Oasis

Creating a Backyard Oasis

The summer of COVID-19 has felt both elusive and inescapable. The heat is definitely here, but with nowhere to go it feels as if the season just never happened. How do we take our favorite things about good weather–socializing, swimming, outdoor dining, recreation–and put them in our own space? Here’s how to create a backyard oasis that you can use in the fall and spring as well. 

Backyards should be for entertaining–both yourself and others. You want to create a space just as comfortable as your living room. The first step is to give yourself some shade. You can do this via gazebo, pergola, or covered porch. Now, build the conversation center around the shade. Bring the indoors, out–it seems strange to put a rug outdoors but it will give depth and warmth to the area. Make sure you’re choosing textiles for outdoor use as they will be exposed to the elements. Add cozy chairs around the rug, and even some decorations like flowerpots or statues. Add a fire pit near this area.

Elite Construction and Remodel

Set the mood. Put in a low maintenance water feature for the sounds of a bubbling brook. You can build this yourself by using a shell for an outdoor fountain. Put it in the ground, add water, then add a fountain fixture to move the water around. Stagnant water will give you mosquitos–combat this by using citronella candles. For more sounds, add a bird feeder further out in your yard. Now that you have the sounds, add the smells. Put in strong smelling flowers like Hyacinths, Magnolias, and Wisterias. Then, put in some plants that will attract butterflies for a picturesque look: Phlox, Butterfly Bush, Lantana, and Blazing Star Flowers are all good options. Finally, use solar lights to set a warm and welcoming mood at nighttime. 

Farm and Fleet

Now that you’re putting in flowers, add in a victory garden as well. Having fresh vegetables to grill up for an outdoor dining experience makes all the difference. You can create a victory garden. Use graph paper to plan the plot of the garden. Break up the hard ground and add some compost–if you’re starting from seeds, raise them in small pots indoors to avoid harsh weather. Once you have young plants they can be moved outdoors and planted. Water deeply each day so the soil is getting saturated with about an inch and a half of water per week. Continue to add nutrients and keep weeds at bay and soon enough you’ll be able to go shopping in your own backyard (garden inspiration)

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Architectural Digest

Now that you have the food ready, create a grilling area. All you need is a small covered area with counter space and a bar for people to sit at.This will be one of the more expensive parts of the renovation, but having a separate little gazebo with a bar space to store drinks and prepare food is so worth it for entertaining. Trying to cram it in your entertaining and relaxing space will make things cramped. Add some fresh cut flowers from your garden for the perfect al fresco dining experience. 

Finally, add in a fun fixture. It might be a treehouse or swing set for the kids, a hot tub, a comfy reading hammock, or a croquet set. After conversation then dinner and drinks everybody will be ready to have some fun. Look around your backyard and you’ll see it’s now a better space than you could go to anywhere else. Take a staycation every day. 

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