Talking about all the BBQ essentials you need for your backyard bash!
This past weekend I was once again honoured to be a judge for Canada Blooms, our country’s largest gardening event, held in Toronto. This year’s theme was Canada 150 and the gardens were designed to reflect a definition of the Canadian backyard.
While the designs might not have reflected Canada as a whole, there are definitely some commonalities in the gardens that I think work for every Canadian backyard.
Moving water resonates in any well-designed backyard and it was apparent from the designs that having some form of fountain, waterfall or bubbling stream is a trend.
The question of the day is how much does landscaping really impact the value of your home? When it comes to the outdoors, spending money on renovations has never been so important or so confusing. So where should you spend your outdoor renovation budget?
The Front Yard — the Seven Per Cent Factor
To make it simple, think about your property like a three course meal. The front yard is the appetizer. It sets the stage for the dinner and hopefully leaves your guests anticipating more. The house is definitely the meat and potatoes of your property. It is the substance of the meal. Finally the backyard, like the dessert course, finishes the space. When you are trying to impress potential buyers, focus on the front yard because people naturally start forming an opinion of your home from the moment they see it. You only get one chance to make a first impression. For years, we were told that first impressions were made at the front door or at the front hallway. This is definitely not the case. Your front yard is the very first thing people see when they come to your home.
I am one hundred percent committed to the belief that an amazing backyard is built around the useable space. For all of the gardeners out there, I will concede that plants are an important ingredient to a harmonized yard but if you don’t have a spot to sit outside with family and friends and enjoy them, then those blooms are a wasted opportunity.
When it comes to creating useable space, I tell homeowners that while there are so many options out there, it ultimately comes down to one of two choices: Deck vs. Patio.
In 2013, the Bank of Montreal went on record stating that almost 50% of Canadians would be moving in the next 5 years. I’ve officially joined that half of the population.
I sold the cottage and bought a farm! Now, I use that term very loosely as it doesn’t have a barn… but one day it will. What it does have is 6.5 acres of opportunity to create the gardens that I’ve always dreamt about. My retirement home!
The farm is quickly replacing the cottage as the second home for a lot of Canadians.
When I think about getting back to my roots, I envision having to build an urban/suburban escape room to wall me off from the rest of the world. Unfortunately, having a private moment in our own backyards is getting harder and harder these days, and this trend shows no signs of slowing down. With larger homes on smaller lots and developers trying to maximize building space, having neighbours visually sharing your backyard is becoming an accepted way of life.
So how do we change this? How do we take back our privacy and create a home oasis?
Before you read this article, I am apologizing in advance. Summer is over and I am going to talk about fall. I know it’s hard to read the truth so bluntly laid out but it’s time to move forward.
This also happens to be the perfect time of the year to start some outdoor projects or to hire a landscaper. Traditionally homeowners think about outdoor renovations in the spring so they get finished before the summer weather hits. Unfortunately, this also results in high traffic for the landscape companies, garden centres and building material stores.
Conversely, September and October are perfect months because there are less people in the market also doing renovations. You also have lots of time before the ground freezes to get plants in and let them get established. Before you rush out and start buying things on sale, there are five questions you should ask to better understand the scope of your project.