warm thoughts


Written on: April 17, 2023

This is the year of “backyard bliss,” according to a new report from Yardzen. The online landscape design service collected responses from more than a million homeowners across the country, making it the most “comprehensive outdoor design report available.”

Bliss includes more plants and more places to play, as many homeowners are postponing vacations in favor of creating relaxing retreats at home, thanks to rising interest rates.

“A throughline in many of these trends is a fundamental shift in outdoor style — the clean lines of modernism give way to organic textures and forms, heavy on habitat-supporting and pollinator-loving plants and trees. This is good for the planet and good for the psyche — the emerging field of ‘green care’ demonstrates the significant therapeutic benefits of being outdoors and around plants, further emphasizing the trend toward creating enjoyment at home through outdoor spaces,” the report notes.

Among this year’s hottest trends are outdoor features that are, well, hot. These are the items that not only increase enjoyment of being outdoors but boast health benefits, as well.

Fire pits. Nearly 60 percent of Yardzen clients requested fire pits. Likewise, fireplaces are in demand as homeowners translate indoor amenities to the outdoors.
Saunas. People want to get their sweat on. Saunas and cedar tubs are on the rise as those who work from home seek more opportunities to step away from their laptops and take a “digital detox.”
Plunge pools. Designed for quick, refreshing dips, plunge pools are an affordable alternative to full-size swimming pools, and they can serve as a sauna when combined with a heat source.
Accessory dwelling units (ADUs) are also surging in popularity. Looking for opportunities to expand square footage, homeowners are placing ADUs in backyards. These units — up 33 percent year over year — can be used as creative studios or guest quarters.

Clean-burning propane can be easily used to fire up these amenities or warm up ADUs. Even if the home is connected to natural gas, contractors can use propane as a supplemental fuel.

The full article and details are here.