Trends, arrangement, artful details and logical design all factor into the most ideal use of space.

It’s all about planning when creating an ideal outdoor living area that meshes latest trends with smart design. Both of these featured projects prove that enjoying your patio can be a year-round endeavor. Here are a few tips to consider.

Create privacy with strategically placed landscaping and retaining walls. Take best advantage of vistas such as rolling hills, ponds and wooded areas, to help highlight the best attributes of your location. Consider logistical aspects such as placing the fireplace undercover, so it can remain usable year round. Or, position a barbecue pit just far enough away from the house so that it is safe yet still accessible for use during colder months.

Mixing paver patterns on retaining walls, walkways and patios are popular trends. For instance, tumbled Canterbury Hill Paver mixed with the rugged look of a natural flagstone paver called Castillo, fuses together design elements of rock and Roman-style materials. These two opposing patterns offer clean lines with a rustic appeal.

Yes, opposites do attract and can have a balancing effect. There is nothing like the relaxation you experience while sitting in front of a massive block fireplace. The warmth is permeating. Small fires offer romantic lighting during the summer months and crank it up for function when the cold rolls around. Consider adding waterfalls on each side, and the effect is bliss.


Secluded by trees with an open field on the horizon, the layout and placement of the space allows only the best part of the lot to be seen.


Using a trendy tumbled Canterbury Hill Paver product and a tumbled Simplicity block gives an old-world look to these manmade materials. Placement of the tub is far enough away from the house yet close enough for darting inside after a soak when the weather turns cold.


D.J. Drury is vice president of Stockman’s located at 3918 Stockman Ln. All featured design and installation is by Stockman Landscaping where 90 percent of materials used are from Missouri.


Photography provided by Full Spectrum Photography