Design Tips for Outdoor Spaces

Have a bare wall or a barely there landscape? Take some pointers from the pros.

Have a blank wall? Consider this treatment: A pergola, trellis and planting bed transform a blank wall into a three-dimensional art piece. Designed by Heather Hardcastle.

The restful quality of this outdoor oasis stems in part from the complementary color tones of furniture, stone columns and patio floor. Designed by Bruce Meeks.

Take advantage of natural terrain contours to add dimensions to the landscape. Here, stone stairs draw the eye up to a second, higher seating area in this multi-level outdoor space. Designed by Dan Berger.

A dry creek bed and whimsical children's fort transform a potentially dangerous drainage area between houses into an attractive and practical play area. Designed by Pamela Berstler

Symbolism is an integral part of Asian garden design. Here, a winding pathway leads to a Buddha statue and a mirror, symbolizing finding oneself at the end of a journey. Designed by Pat Wagner.

Scale is key to a good design, says landscape architect Kerry Burt. The eight-foot cedar posts add substantial heft to this arbor.

On sloped lots landscape designer Scott Cohen often builds spas to a height of three feet, maximizing the use of available space and enhancing the outdoor room feel with multiple levels. Laying tile in a diagonal pattern helps turn the spillway into eye candy.

Smart planting of only a few containers means that you can dress up any outdoor space with a seasonal display of annuals, perennials and even vegetables.

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