When we imagine a court yard there are different pictures that we have in our mind. It may be a small and picturesque one or a vast and elegant one like in a royal palace, or as simple as an outdoor spot in front of your sweet home where you can have a fine time relaxing. If your house design permits space for having a courtyard then you can design its landscape so beautifully with various means. The overall design and beauty should be a shade different from a regular garden.
Having a properly designed court yard landscape is an easy task. You can make your imagination run wild on it, but first of all decide on a point of main focus then the rest is adding in plants and flowers that matches the size of your courtyard.
Courtyard represents a focal point in the landscape of your garden and designing it perfectly matters a lot. It is a wise idea to imagine the purpose of your courtyard before designing a landscape plan. Even plants that will suit your décor of the house and overall surroundings can be looked for before a design is finalized. A very thorough planning is required for landscaping the courtyard as it is such a spot of the house that cannot be changed like the color of a wall. So, to bring out the best design and add beauty to your home, consulting a professional is a wise approach.
After you think a design is finalized then it is time for the next task of selecting a focal point. There are numerous options that you can choose from to make your courtyard a center of attraction. A fruit bearing tree, a small fountain, a flowering weeping cherry, and many more. You can fit in other creative ideas like a small alley with small flowering plants around that leads to a nice and cozy sitting place. You can add in a small herb garden that will have a dual purpose for decoration and for the kitchen. Other features like a small water body, a koi fish pond perhaps may provide the atmosphere that you desire. Focal point can be anything simple to complex, like a humble hammock or a sitting place. For the final design and decision of a point of focus the designer may decide along with your added ideas and theme of the courtyard.
A courtyard remains incomplete without the greens. As a final task, the process of selecting and planting the right flora is the most enjoyable and important part. Putting all the components together and seeing the design that you have imagined come to form of life is the utmost beauty that one can experience while designing a courtyard. Designing a courtyard is fun, because there are a number of elements that you can bring in and give a look that is never expected with the design that you have in mind. Simple yet effective means such as planting some strawberries around a flower bed or a miniscule sized rock garden at one corner of your courtyard will certainly add a lot of visual appeal to the theme. Select out the largest plant that will remain in a spot and immovable first so that the rest of the plants can be selected based on its location and space. Potted plants should always be included in the design so that it can be moved to preferred locations whenever desired or when a little alteration is required.
Top 3 Courtyard Landscape Design Ideas
1. The Modern Courtyard Design
A modern style courtyard is designed for beauty as well as usability. It can be a good means to add on those values that your home deserves at the same time provides ample space for a large gathering that you may sometimes have. This type of design presents maximum space utilization capacity and yet the elegance that a modern home should have.
Modern courtyard design is installed with minimal designs. Its feature allows the utilization of space efficiently. Modern courtyard has an overall look of openness with lots of light and space making it ideal for a nice place to sit and relax. It presents a beautiful, functional set up with very little management and maintenance required.
If you want to install some tiles for the ground or the walkways you should possibly look for light colors rather than dark ones. Colors like whites, cream and light greys presents a look of cleanliness and openness whereas dark and bright colors can be a detrimental color combination for modern courtyard. The material for your tiles can be a royal looking elegant marble or simple yet sturdy concrete. Adding patterns and prints to the tiles will give a more luxurious and arty look to your courtyard. This tile design not only add a visual appeal but also provides a good means to make your tiles look clean even when it is dusty. Adding shades and different designs will definitely bring in an interesting look of your courtyard, but again an opinion of a professional designer is always a must.
Maintenance of the modern courtyard is easy because of its minimal design feature. For the tiles a frequent inspection is advisable so that it lasts long and remains as beautiful as ever. A regular check and maintenance will prevent it from damage and small damages that it may develop. A smart way to prevent potholes is to plan for an underfloor heating which is a modern concept and very practical.
Your modern courtyard will remain incomplete without a sitting place. This is for you and as well as for your guests. Imagine a beautiful evening spent on a nice bench in your beautiful courtyard lost deep in a book of your choice. Sounds good? Well then select a sitting place that is durable for the outdoors and can accommodate some of your guests that may gather at your place once in a while. But make sure that the design is modern and it is comfortable for sitting.
For a focal point of the courtyard you can select a feature that interests you and that matches the design of your courtyard. A fountain or a statue which can be picked from a design without life or a livelier decorative plant or a tree can be selected for the purpose. A fountain or a small pond is a good choice as water, by nature infuses a sense of purity and cleansing feeling to the design. Moreover the sound of water is soothing to listen to. For a more decorative approach you can use mood lighting which will work best in conjunction with the water bodies. If you have an all glass door or a glass wall of the room that faces the courtyard then you can enjoy the beauty of it right from your room.
2. The Cool and Shady Courtyard Garden
House design which are inspired by the Southwestern architecture as well as adobe homes can never have a complete picture without a courtyard. The shady, cool and garden courtyard is very popular with homeowners of Arizona. It has an open outdoor layout with shady regions and beautiful soothing water bodies dotted with beautiful flowers. In Arizona, where a mild climate prevails, this kind of design can be a comfortable and feasible one as the weather can be almost un-disturbing throughout the year that permits enjoyment of the outdoor beauty.
This type of courtyard is bounded by stucco or stone walls providing a sense of security and privacy while in your courtyard. The courtyard can be accessed from the house or from a well-decorated iron gate from the outside. In this type of courtyard stone pavements are a common feature. The pavements provides a walkway path that can lead to the main entrance of the house. This type of courtyard is ideal for regions such as Arizona, because of the harsh desert sun. The region without so many trees to provide shade from the sun, the Ramada is the best option for finding comfort and hides from the scorching sun.
A pergola, as it is popularly known in most part of USA, is the roof at the patio with an open shade. The pergola has a roof design that has gaps in between the slats of board lumbar. The gaps depends on the choice of the house owner and the design. It is especially to provide shade as well as allow light to pass in. The pergola fails to offer a complete protection from the harsh sunlight so another architectural design called the Ramada is introduced. The trellis Ramada, like the pergola provides open shade to a patio. It is more rightly designed for the Arizona landscape and is a design that has roots at the southwestern region of U.S as well as Mexico.
The complementing effect of the Ramada and the soothing view of small water bodies around your courtyard is a sight to behold. It is like an escape from the scorching heat of the sun with the shade of the Ramada, the stone pavement and the running water around you. It is scientifically proven that a soothing view of water results in release of serotonin in our body which elevates our feeling of wellness. So, faster movement of water and amount of water is in direct proportional relationship with the production of the hormone and thus the better one feels staying in the courtyard.
The water bodies can be placed in a central prime location or may be kept at one corner of the courtyard. It can be a fountain or a small decorative pond with aquatic flowers. The material for construction of this type of structures can be chosen from a number of available options. It may be rough stucco, unpolished stone or tiles or may be the naturally available stones that are untouched. The materials that are used for construction represents rough and hard outlook, to minimize the rough look you can always use an assortment of plants around the edges of the water structure. In a traditional Arizona courtyard, many types of plants will be seen adding to the scenic beauty. While choosing plants a careful decision must be taken for species which love the bright sun and that likes shades, because your courtyard is going to have both the spots. Plants which will bear flower and others that will have rich foliage can be mixed for an added interest.
The rough look of the wall made of stucco or other stone masonry works can be made more appealing to look at by employing various colors of flowers. Plants that are vine like will suit best for this kind of décor. Bougainvillea, Climbing roses, Snail Vine, morning glories are few plants that can be used for the purpose. The vibrant blooms of these plants will not only add a range of colors but will also give a softened look of the walls and the courtyard. Small shrubs and plants that grow throughout the year with minimal water and in the harsh climate of Arizona will best survive. Having done the décor to the last inch of your courtyard, your friends and family will love to find an oasis in your courtyard in the harshest month of the year.
3. The Mexican Courtyard
A Mexican courtyard theme is based on the various landscape which can be seen in Mexico. Based on combination of flora rich tropical forest, a vast open desert and the naturally rich coast which can be all seen around Mexico the courtyard theme represents the colorful diversity of the land.
Apart from setting a general idea some Mexican theme courtyard may be based on a specific spot of the land which gets set so well in most cases. So if you have visited Mexico and have seen some unique traditional aspects then you can definitely add in the feature into the courtyard design. This will be a kind of memories enliven in your own home.
While designing the courtyard few things need to be kept in mind. A central open area for formal gathering is an indispensable feature that should be implanted in the courtyard. It is a place where a formal or informal environment can be set for a celebration and a relaxation zone. To give an authentic feel of the design, certain components that are prevalent in Mexico can be added like terracotta and some greeneries of the land. The aim of the design, after all, is to get a feel of Mexico.
After setting the central area for socializing, the next task will be to set the tiles in accordance with the natural landscape of Mexico. Tiles fabricated from naturally available materials and have a coarse and earthy look are the best to choose from. Along with the materials designs of traditional nature can also be incorporated.
Just setting the stage is not enough you need to put those decors for a more appealing look. Therefore, adding in those extra features that will cheer up the mood during a social gathering need to be looked into. Why not add the most useful component? The handmade brick oven or a barbeque. For a group dining spot you can choose a sturdy wrought iron table, benches and other sitting items. Add in a candle stand of wrought iron for a serene candle light dinner.
After setting all these and if you still have space to spare then you can think of a water body, small enough just to add in a relaxing component. It can be a water reservoir made of terracotta or a small pond with lively fishes.
Talking of terracotta, you can also use some vase for beautiful flowers or cactus to give an authentic look.
Mexican desert can be replicated in your courtyard by planting some cacti and plants that are prevalent around the region. If you are a perfectionist then plant some orange, lemon or banana trees which will definitely enhance your design. You always have a good option of planting some vegetables for your kitchen and also make it organic so that it is tasty and juicy. Try some well-maintained flowerbeds and some hanging baskets. If the space and landscape permits you still have choice for other plants like agave, aloe vera etc.
Other accessories like Aztec style cushion and fabrics for the table or ceramics and pottery and a large frame wrought iron gate are components that will go well with the design. For a covered overhead that gives comfort in the evening gathering you can go for thatched roof of the central gathering spot. Make sure the pillars for the roofing are firm and durable so that you can enjoy a nice Mexican evening. Don’t forget the guitar…