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Basic Landscaping Concepts

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A. Create an Inviting Entrance

A paved entrance wide enough that you can walk around an obstacle like a parked stroller, a walkway marked out with lines of coloured pavers, a low wall topped with potted flowers and inviting and well positioned steps are some of the many ways of creating a welcoming entryway.

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B. Define Different Spaces for Different Functions

Define your landscape according to its various functions by erecting a wall or, with the help of different pavers or slabs, by creating a coloured line, pattern or texture on the layout. Divisions around quiet areas and paths should consist of subdued materials. Areas destined for vehicles should be spacious and uncluttered whereas service areas should be more discreet.

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C. Create a Multipurpose Area

A well-conceived landscape can solve your need for extra space by including areas that will have multiple uses. For example, a wall can ingeniously and safely become a bar at cocktail hour. Another way of creating extra space is by laying a row of pavers a good distance from the barbecue to mark off a dance floor.

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D. Seek Balance between Colours and Textures

For a successful and personalized landscape, opt for pleasing colour schemes rather than a single hue. Let yourself be inspired by the different ambiences that textures, colours, shapes, divisions and vegetation can create. Also, follow the suggestions in the table prepared by our experts at Permacon to contrast, match and get creative as you tailor the colours of the pavers and slabs to your outdoor environment.

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E. Ensure that Transitions between Different
Levels Are Smooth and Safe

In a landscape that is characterized by different elevations, being able to safely and easily go from one level to another is essential. Consider using the shapes and colours of pavers as a way of guiding the movements of people. Also, consider installing steps of equal height and depth, or stairways where the top and bottom steps are made of differently coloured pavers. Laying pavers in a different direction or abutting steps against a wall can also contribute to creating a sense of comfort and safety.

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F. Ensure Good Drainage

To avoid the formation of puddles in summer and the build-up of ice in winter, give the areas of your landscape that are covered with pavers or slabs a 1% to 2% gradient to ensure quick drainage of surface water. Providing for proper drainage will ensure the gradient remains forever unchanged and will prevent surfaces from buckling.

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G. Plan for Utility Areas

Your landscape design should include spaces for miscellaneous items. For example, the space behind a wall could serve as a screen to conceal a wood pile or garbage and recycling bins. It's important that the blocks in the wall match the pavers or slabs that you have chosen for your ground covering.

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H. Design an Inviting and Functional Doorstep

Make sure that your landscaping plan includes an inviting and functional doorstep in front of your house's entrance. The height, width and length of the doorstep should be such that visitors can easily cross the threshold of your doorway without rain or water from the garden entering into your house.

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I. Create Links between the Landscape
and Your House

The distinctive ambience that you will create in your landscape should be inspired from architectural details on the exterior facing of your house, or from elements relating to its shape, colour or texture. In so doing, you will establish a relationship between the environment and your home, and give your landscape greater harmony and cohesion.

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J. Mark off the Boundaries of Your Entryway

In your landscaping plan, make sure to clearly mark off the boundary between your private space and public access areas. That boundary can be created by using landscaping accessories such as columns or by laying, at the entrance to your property, pavers or slabs having a different texture, pattern or colour. You can also highlight the entryway by covering it entirely with pavers which will convey the impression of a larger property and thus increase its value.

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K. Take Advantage of Your Property's Topography or Create a Natural Looking One of Your Own

On naturally sloping terrain, the transition between your house and the different spaces on your property can be eased by using stones or pavers to create steps and walls that blend into the landscape. On flat terrain, earth can be moved to create small mounds and landscaping components can be positioned to hold them in place, such as a wall supporting a terrace lookout.

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L. Create a Transition between Two Areas
within Your Landscape

If your landscaping design includes separate areas or an area having different functions, make the transitions between them clearly evident by incorporating steps or walls. A more subtle approach can consist in arranging pavers with contrasting colours to form a line on the flooring or, in the case of a continuous surface, using a different type of material to achieve the same effect. When two spaces within your landscape are very different, soften the transition by borrowing features from both spaces thereby creating a distinctive style.

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M. Choose Materials According to their Intended Use

For an attractive, relaxing and safe landscape, use the right material at the right place. For example, along your pool edge, consider installing rounded, non-slip, easy-to-grab capping. Smaller and smoother pavers are preferable for walkways and pathways whereas more rugged pavers should be reserved for areas where there is vehicle traffic.

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N. Mark off Different Areas with Boundaries

The final step that will bring out your landscaping is the finish work. Your finished project will reflect the hard work and effort you used to create a functional and aesthetically-pleasing design of your landscape. Be consistent to the very end of your project by installing invisible or concrete curbs, topping a wall with capping, or creating a harmonious link between two surfaces.

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