Log cabin hardscaping is essential to creating attractive outdoor living spaces and curb appeal. The hardscaping plan should work in concert with the landscaping design. While landscaping covers all of the living parts of the yard, hardscaping includes all of the man-made elements such as walkways, seating, lighting, structures, fences and decorative elements. Here are just a few factors to consider when formulating your plan.
Plan Ahead – Start by drawing your plan out on paper. You might not be able to add everything at once, so it’s good to know where you’d like things to be in the future. It is important to match hardscaping with the style of the home. For example, Greek columns may look out of place at a log cabin. Consider what you are trying to achieve. Are you looking to mow less and relax outdoors more? A patio accomplishes that!
Get Grounded – Often the most noticeable log cabin hardscape elements are the ground surfaces of the driveway, walkway and patio. Many different materials are available to achieve the look you want. Gravel comes in different colors and is relatively inexpensive upfront but has ongoing maintenance costs. Gravel has an added security benefit because it’s impossible to make a silent approach while driving on it. Concrete can be traditional or enhanced with stain and texture. Pavers, which come in a plethora of sizes, shapes and colors really allow you to customize a look. Asphalt is popular throughout the northeast because it weathers the freeze-thaw cycles of winter better than concrete or pavers. As with most things in design, budget and personal preference will influence your selection.
Outdoor Living – If you want a protected outdoor living space, consider adding a pavilion or gazebo. Perfect for casual entertaining, these structures provide shade and some privacy. Will it be an additional dining area with grill, tables and chairs or more of a lounge with sofas and a television? If you are looking for something less structured, create a meditation spot by adding a bench or swing under a shade tree.
Looking for Privacy? Fences are a traditional way to establish privacy as well as keeping children and pets corralled in the back yard. Fences come in a variety of materials and styles to compliment your log cabin. Fences often require approval from local zoning officials, so check before you start your project. Privacy screens are another option. You can create your own little private oasis with the addition of a few paneled privacy screens. Like fences, they come in many shapes, sizes, colors and materials.
Decorative elements can reflect your personal style. Statues and sculptures can be whimsical or formal. Fountains introduce the soothing sound of flowing water. Add birdbaths if you want to welcome feathered friends. Pergolas are popular focal points that provide some shade without totally blocking the view of the sky above. An arbor can highlight the entrance to the garden or other special area.
These are just a few things to consider when formulating a log cabin hardscaping plan. Have fun with it and enjoy!