Leading up to the National Home Show, we had a chance to pick the brain of outdoor expert, Peter Bonanno, Owner, Curb Appeal Concepts Inc. In the spirit of this month’s “Love” theme and with spring in sight, we asked him questions about how families and couples can improve the outdoor space around their homes!
Newinhomes.com (NIH): What does a backyard need to bring a family together?
Peter Bonanno (PB): Love and affection. Key ingredients to life let alone a backyard. With these elements in place, the space around your home becomes a reflection of your family, its values, dreams and aspirations.
We work with homeowners to transform the spaces around their homes into dynamic places for entertainment, recreation and tranquility. How that works out exactly is different for every family.
If we begin with the idea that the backyard is part of the home versus an extension of the home, then we apply the same principles and incorporate the same creature comforts and conveniences that we do with our indoor space. This translates into separate and distinct outdoor spaces and rooms, as we enjoy inside. We incorporate light, heat, water, cover. We build areas for recreation, work, lounging, cooking and dining.
NIH: Have you noticed a difference between how couples and families redesign their backyards?
PB: In a broad sense, absolutely! They are very distinct demographics, with different needs and wishes. However, even within each group everyone should be viewed as being as unique as their fingerprints.
When we work with families, couples or singles alike we encourage them to view the investment in their backyard redesign as “Expressive Capital.” The space should reflect their personality, lifestyle and preferences. The essence of great landscape design is to marry the homeowner’s lifestyle with the natural landscape of the property – which can vary from a sprawling estate lot to a dense urban setting and everything in between.
NIh: Are there yard accessories every couple needs?
PB: Oh wow! This could be a long list! In a perfect world, you’d have, well, perfection. We encourage our clients to think about their outdoors in three distinct categories: Entertainment, recreation, and tranquillity. Again, everyone is unique, so different people will put different weighting on each category.
A couple with young children may put more emphasis on recreation – a pool or playground area might be must-haves for them. A more mature couple might place emphasis on entertaining and incorporate outdoor kitchens, pavilions and the like. An older couple may put more emphasis on tranquillity, incorporating water and fire features.
NIH: How about the single folks? What can they do to make their place perfect for outdoor entertaining?
PB: Make it fabulous! Whether you prefer sleek clean lines and rectilinear geometry for a modern look or more opulent, luxurious elements for a more classical look – do what you love! Inspiration abounds!
Furniture is a must-have – there are so many collections available with styles and fabrics to suit any budget. And a cozy water or fire feature for ambiance. And keep it simple – opt for low maintenance plant selections, bigger mulched beds and extra terracing to keep maintenance to a minimum and free your time to enjoy the space that much more.
NIH: Are there any property faux-pas that everyone should avoid?
PB: The biggest faux-pas to avoid is lack of planning. Create a file of pictures, words and descriptions of what you want your space to look and feel like. Establish a budget that works for you and what you want to accomplish.
Work with a landscape professional that you feel comfortable will help you achieve your wish list. Keep in mind that less is often more. Prioritize the wish list and address elements of it in sequence. You could always phase the work over time instead of doing it all at once.
NIH: You must have an amazing backyard and we understand you have children. What do they enjoy most about it?
PB: I can pinpoint exactly what my kids love most about our backyard – it’s not fussy! They enjoy the open and distinct spaces, the ability to go barefoot, the casual relaxed feel of the space.
Love and affection. I encourage everyone to find more pleasure in their own backyard!
Peter Bonanno has a strong passion for design and the outdoors – which inspired him to found Curb Appeal – a designer and builder of beautiful and functional outdoor living spaces. Peter is grateful every day for the scores of clients who put their trust and significant investment in his hands. Client appreciation continues to be his greatest reward.
Curb Appeal Concepts Inc.
Helping savvy homeowners enhance the pleasure of their outdoor living
Curb Appeal is a designer and builder of beautiful and functional outdoor living spaces. Their valued clients enjoy impeccable service and peace of mind from concept to completion. Experts in the natural surroundings of people’s homes, Curb Appeal is renowned for creating unique landscapes and structures that deliver what clients really want – years of fun and enjoyment for their family and friends in their own great outdoors.
Don’t forget to grab your tickets for the National Home Show, which runs March 9-18, 2018.