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Hardscape Artistry

Written by Renee Dustman
Imagery by Nature’s Accents, Inc.

A house isn’t a home until it reflects the owner’s personality inside and out.
    To create the perfect outdoor space for you and your family, there is much you must first consider. A landscape designer can guide you through the process, but there will still be decisions only you can make.

What do you like to do outside? Do you entertain? Other considerations are cost and maintenance. It helps to be informed.

Know  Your Surroundings
    In particular, you should be familiar with the various types of hardscape materials your landscaper may suggest. Your decision will determine the aesthetics of the space, as well as the cost and upkeep of the installation.
    Popular among many today is landscaping that blends in with its surroundings to appear naturally forming. Various types of natural stone are often used to create this effect. This material is very durable but quite labor-intensive and costly.

Consider Your Choices
    A viable alternative is concrete. This may not sound very appealing but trained professionals, such as Nature’s Accents, Inc., can work wonders with the material.
    Hardscape artisans are able to replicate the look and feel of natural stone using specially formulated concrete as their canvas. The material is durable, versatile and customizable, requires little maintenance, and is comparable in price to brick and/or concrete pavers. It can be used to create retaining walls, waterfalls and other water features, walkways, patios, fire pits, and more. The finished product is every bit as beautiful as natural stone.
    If expediency and cost efficiency are your primary concerns, you might consider using preformed panels of concrete to construct much of your outdoor space. These panels are made to look like natural stone (boulders, fieldstone, granite, etc.) or wood, but eliminate much of the labor involved in on-site concrete hardscaping.
    Preformed or custom, concrete offers countless options and unlimited design possibilities for creating a picture-perfect outdoor space of your very own.   

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