The Outdoor Room Concept.

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Dear reader, I come to you with a lot of warm wishes even as you look forward to the new year. I guess new year resolutions are in the kitchen cooking and just about to be served. That is it.
Well, I have something sweet for you here.
In landscaping, there is a concept we call the outdoor room concept. Understanding this concept will increase your skills in landscaping. This is because under this concept you will be able to view an outdoor area to be landscaped as one would look at an indoor room which contains a floor, walls and roof.
You are now beginning to see the mental image form in your mind. The first question we need to ask ourselves is; what are the functions of a floor in an outdoor room concept?.The second question we should be asking ourselves is what materials should we use in an outdoor room concept.
The floor is the ground or earth we step on in the outdoor environment. It is the horizontal plane. It therefore;
-Bears all the traffic within a landscaped area
-Guides or directs movement within the landscape.
-On the floor grass occupies over 70%-80%
Materials that we may use on the floor include:
-Grass/turf
-Ornamental ground covers.
-Concrete pathways
-Water such as ponds.

Another aspect of our outdoor room concept is the walls. Walls form the vertical plane in a landscape.
Functions of a wall include:
-Marks the boundary of a landscaped area.
-Separates between areas within a landscape providing privacy.
-Provides security from stray animals or strangers.
Materials that can be used for walls in an outdoor room concept include:
-Concrete walls or fences
-Shrubs as hedges
-Vines when provided with support.
-Sides of buildings.
The last aspect of an outdoor room concept is the roof. In an outdoor room concept, the roof is simply the airspace above us. When landscaped, the roof;
– Provides shelter from direct sun
-It provides privacy from people in storeyed buildings near the landscape site.
Materials used in an outdoor roof include:
-Trees
-Vines, if given proper support.
-Tent roofs
– Verandah over-hangs and
-Building extensions.

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Ornamental plants and building materials  in a landscape should therefore be arranged in a manner that satisfies the desire of the client.

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