The cold is the main thing that drives us indoors during the winter, with early sundown and shortened days being the second reason. Shivering and freezing do not make for comfortable outdoor enjoyment of your landscape. To maximize the use of your outdoor areas, a few modifications to your landscape design can enhance the warmth of your Warwick, NY, patio. Don’t allow the ravages of winter to hold your downtime hostage and indoors; consult a landscaping professional about making a few winter-friendly tweaks to your landscape master design plan.
Block the Wind and Conserve Warmth
One of the clearest ways to make your outdoor patio space warmer during the winter is to block cold breezes while holding in warmth. With some well-placed patio screening or other wind barriers - obstacles like walls, roll-up screens, or even shrubs and trees, you can effectively hold in warmth and keep out the cold, enhancing the comfort of the space. In placing these items, make sure that you consider the potential fire hazard involved, placing an adequate amount of distance between heat sources such as fireplaces and fire pits and flammable screens, using fireproof materials as appropriate, and allowing for ventilation of the area.
Warm the Area
With the cold air blocked out, warming up the area should be the next step for keeping toasty this winter. Introducing heat into your social outdoor spaces can be accomplished in a variety of ways, from a fire pit or outdoor fireplace, to an outdoor space heater fueled by either propane or electricity. Each has its own characteristics that you might prefer over others.
The fire pit option encourages conversation and allows accommodation for larger groups while the fireplace option is more appropriate for intimate gatherings. Bringing in outdoor space heaters provides convenient and efficient heat without the aesthetic enhancements of permanent fire features. Combining the the two options can also be a good idea if the space is large and requires wide, even heat distribution.
As you choose the right additions for your warmth-promoting winter landscape, weigh the benefits of convenience, appearance, risk, and permanence to guide your decision.
Brighten the Mood
Staying physically warm during winter is also enhanced by the typical accommodations made during this season. Handy blankets, hot chocolate, and a warm fire are all ways that you can enjoy the outdoors and remain warm. The cold of winter is also psychological, however. Banish this negativity by incorporating bright colors into your landscape design, bring in cushions to keep bottoms off of freezing cold seats, and offer brightly colored fleeces or lap blanket to guests. A bright, cheery environment will go far to bring positivity and warmth into the experience of your outdoor space.
In the same way, having ample lighting in your patio space is another way to create a comforting environment. Consider switching out white lighting with warmer colors to emulate the visual warmth of sunshine. Remember to have light fixtures fitted by a professional who can ensure an efficient, well-distributed and layered lighting plan.