It’s that time of year to reflect back on the year past and look forward to the newness of the year to come. I’ve scoured the web, reviewed the latest surveys and analyzed my clients this last year to come up with this fun list of the Landscape Trends for 2019. Judging from the beginning of this year that started with a government shutdown and a hot new series on Netflix called Tidying up with Marie Kondo. I’m thinking this year we’ll be aiming to simplify life just a little bit from finances to all the stuff. Our daily interaction with our outdoor landscape spaces will see this change as well. Check out what’s on trend for 2019 below.
The Top Landscape Design Trends for 2019!
1. Low maintenance yards (same as 2017)
Low maintenance: always a winner in these busy times where most families have two working parents with a lot on their plate, or a retired couple who is DONE with keeping up with their yard. (they tell me they are literally so over that.) Low maintenance is just what is sounds like, it’s the idea that you plant a well designed garden that needs little upkeep. One tried and true way to do that is to choose plants that are from your area. Ones that are meant to thrive in your US plant hardiness zone (http://planthardiness.ars.usda.gov/PHZMWeb/) Low maintenance allows you to plant plants meant for this location, native plants that need no care in their native landscapes and therefore need little care in town. Plus, I honestly want you to spend more time relaxing and using your garden then cleaning and deadheading. One thing that I always mention to my residential clients is that sometimes maintenance is what you make of it. Your impression on (that has been built over many years) what a landscape should look like may need to be changed. Seed heads left on all winter might have made you cringe a few years ago but that was before you realized how sculptural they look in winter and how useful they are for foraging birds. Perspective my dear.
2. Retreats in your own yard, places to meditate, be mindful and even do yoga.
Marie Kondo teaches homeowners the art of Tyding up by using a method of asking the question, Does this spark joy in your life? It is a simple reminder to be mindful of your living environments. Homeowners are seeking this out not only indoors but outdoors. The trend we’re seeing for this year is using our outdoors spaces as places we can go to retreat, meditate, and be mindful. This might take the form of small seating areas with a lovely view, peaceful patio areas large enough for yoga or even a sacred space where you keep a statue. These spaces may be little retreats and places of reflection specific to the homeowner. It could be as simple as setting up an outdoor chair to observe a view or hanging wind chimes from a tree. Using the outdoors as a place to retreat from daily life with little things that spark joy in your life. Now this is a trend that could be transformational.
3. Growing vegetables is still a winning trend.
Whether it’s due to saving money, health reasons, environmental causes, or just wanting to connect with nature; homeowners are still heading outdoors to grow their own food. Most of my clients this past year had something edible in their yards. Some grew herbs in containers, while others harvested pounds of produce from their fruit trees. This trend is not slowing down. There is something innately satisfying about growing your own food. Classes on how to grow vegetables are found in towns all over the country. Check out local state and county extension services to learn more. Local libraries also tend to be a magnet for learning more about gardening whether it’s via their books or classes held in their buildings. Start small by trying out some herb gardening today.
4. Native plants that can be adaptive to climate change.
The world is getting hotter according to the scientists and it’s only going to continue. Homeowners are noticing, according to all the research, and are asking for more adaptable plants. Which typically means planting native plants that are locally found in the area or adapted to the local climate. This is old hat for us landscape architects who have been designing with native plants for over 20 years. But three cheers to hear homeowners have caught on. As someone who moved from a very wet climate to the Southwest 20 years ago it was hard to learn an entire set of new plants but growing plants meant for your climate just makes sense. It’s much more low maintenance than trying to make a plant that is used to 40″ of rain a year grow with only 10″. If you are wanting to start transitioning to native plants in your yard you’ll want to start at the local nurseries (not the big box stores). Local nurseries are stocked with local plants and knowledgeable staff. It’s a great place to start, they’ll also be able to point you to the best plant resources in town.
SO what’s on TREND for you this year? What will you be doing in your yard? Will it involve plants, furniture or will it be a large undertaking? I’d love to hear from you. Drop me a message in the comments below……….
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