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How to Design a Courtyard That Actually Works?

If you’re thinking about adding a courtyard to your home, there are some things you need to keep in mind. They will help you design a space that actually works.

A courtyard can feel more like an extension of the living spaces inside your home rather than a separate room, making it ideal for multigenerational homes, fitness studios, guest rooms and many other types of house plan.

1. Keep it Simple

Whether it’s a small courtyard or large space, a well-designed garden breathes new life into an outdoor area. A simple mix of greenery, including grasses, ferns and evergreen shrubs can be a great start for a courtyard design idea.

Plants are essential for softening the hard surfaces that tend to be dominant in many courtyard gardens. They can add visual interest and depth to the bare walls or fences, as well as balancing tall boundary structures and retaining walls.

2. Create Levels

When designing a courtyard, it’s important to keep levels in mind. This will help the space feel more like a room within the home.

Creating levels can also help to increase natural ventilation in your home. It’s also a good idea to try and maximize cross-ventilation so that the air can flow from one side of the home to the other without going through each individual room.

Plantings and trees are a great way to add structure, shade and privacy to a courtyard garden. These can be planted to a height of around a metre, or shorter if you’re working with a small space.

3. Think About the Light

If you’re designing your courtyard with optimal daylight in mind, it will make a huge difference to the way you use the space. In fact, it may even influence the layout of the room itself.

Whether you are looking to relax, entertain or connect with nature, a well-designed courtyard provides a welcoming space for all these purposes. And with a little bit of effort, it can also turn into an excellent visual focal point for your home.

4. Create a Focal Point

One of the best ways to make your courtyard more than just a garden is to find a focal point. It could be a piece of art, a well-positioned pot or even a small water feature.

Using low groundcovers and planting narrow hedges at the end of paved pathways to soften the long straight lines is also an effective trick. Adding a few large trees to the mix is also a clever idea for creating the image of a much bigger space.

5. Add a Fireplace

Adding a fireplace to your courtyard can add warmth and ambiance to the space. But it also requires careful planning to ensure it is situated in the best spot for its intended use.

For instance, the fire feature should be close to the kitchen door so it doesn’t need to be lugged over a long distance when cooking or entertaining. Moreover, it should be in an area where it won’t cause safety issues or be visible to neighbors.

6. Add a Pergola

Adding a pergola is a great way to add shade and privacy to your courtyard. It will also extend your living space and increase the amount of time you spend outside.

Pergolas come in a variety of styles and can be custom-built or purchased as a kit from a landscape professional.

Pergolas can be made from natural wood such as Western red cedar or other durable, chemical-free species. Or they can be made from reclaimed wood, which is a great choice for those who like an eco-friendly option.

7. Think About Water

Water is one of the most important substances in the world. We use it for everything from cleaning to power generation to transportation.

It’s a liquid made up of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. This jumbled bunch of molecules clings together because of a chemical bonding force called hydrogen bonds.

Using this understanding of the molecular interaction in water has helped researchers to create a new way to explain why it behaves so differently from other liquids.

8. Add a Seating Area

One of the most fun ways to add dimension and focal points to a small courtyard is by creating a seating area. This could include a few chairs, a sofa or even a hammock!

The key to making this happen is the right mix of furniture. It’s best to go with smaller pieces that won’t take up too much space or clutter up the space.

9. Add a Fireplace

An outdoor fireplace can add a lot of warmth and comfort to your courtyard. Whether you choose to have it fueled by gas or wood, you’ll be able to enjoy it year-round.

Adding a fireplace requires an experienced bricklayer or builder to create the firebox, flue and chimney. This is a highly technical and precise task.

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