Incorporating the outdoors and indoors into one harmonious living space is more challenging than most people think. Too often, the garden is an add on around the house and maybe even an afterthought.
If you are lucky enough to have a garden, it could be a handy extension to your home if you applied some of these hints and tips. Creating a cohesive flow from the house to the garden can offer you much joy, contentment, and socialising opportunities. Here are just a few ways to achieve this.
Try undercover growing
One way to blend the indoor and the outdoor is to have an indoor space where you do your gardening. A greenhouse or a polytunnel can offer an indoor area where you can grow all year round.
Obviously, you can position these close to the house and create a link between the two, but that is not necessarily the point.
The idea is that your garden then becomes a usable space all year round and one that you enjoy as much as your home.
It might be that you can create a walkthrough to this indoor garden space with a partially covered pathway. For instance, you can use a pergola to connect the outdoors indoors, acting as an ornamental border between the two.
Blend the seating area with your indoor area
The seating area in your garden is the place that allows you to use this space as you would your home. It is a place for relaxation al fresco.
How you connect this zone of your garden to your home goes a long way in blending the indoors and outdoors. You can put the seating area close to the house and create a flow with pathways between the two.
Even if the balance of light and shade in the garden means you must site this seated area somewhere further into the garden, you can make exciting walkways that connect this area to the house in a cohesive way.
This can be a great trick to make better use of small gardens too
Try using garden rooms
Garden rooms do not need to be indoors, though you can have covered over areas attached to your house too.
Garden rooms are a means of splitting up your outside into chunks, and these different areas encourage the visitor to explore and seek out the different experiences.
You can easily create wonderful hidden moments behind a fence, hedge or wall that can surprise and delight visitors.
These garden rooms are also a way of extending the experience of your home into your garden. It goes without saying that you have an area to eat, relax, play and more in the house – but how about recreating this in the garden.
You can easily have a space for growing food, an open area for play and a seated area for relaxation. How you border these areas depends on how large the garden but could be as simple as some flowers separating the two zones.
Bonding the garden to the kitchen
Quite often, the garden and kitchen live side by side in a house – and this was by design. Historically, this connection allowed for the bringing in produce from the land to cook in the kitchen.
Why not recreate this historic bond between the soil and the plate? You can, for instance, create a herb garden close to the back door, so you can pick fresh from the garden to bring taste to your dishes.
Alternatively, you can strive for sustainability by planting a veg garden and then creating a washing area outside, so the food can be readied before coming into the home.
The way to expand the kitchen into the garden is to have your barbeque area.
Imagine building a brick barbeque and including an area to plant up your herbs and salad that can support the griddle food straight from the coals.
Whatever way you choose to connect the garden to the kitchen, remember to create those pathways between the two. There should be a visual connection in the garden’s design and how it connects to the house – so it looks aesthetically like a cohesive space. Imagine having a wooden floor in your kitchen that leads to your decking that obviously connects to the area where you grow food.
Merge your planting
It is not only pathways that can connect the garden to the house, though this is important. You can also create this cohesion with a clever planting scheme, with the indoors mirroring the outdoors.
Whatever planting you have inside in pots could be mirrored in the containers you have outside, so there is a definite blurring of the two areas. While there are plants that can be indoor or outdoor that can be used here, you can use your imagination with colour schemes to be more subtle than this.
In short, there are many ways to blend the indoor with the outdoor. It can be a way to utilise the garden as another room in your house and make it more usable. It might even add more value to your home if you come to sell.