Spring is Here! How to Create an Outdoor Oasis of Any Size
Spending time outdoors has countless known health benefits, including reducing stress, helping your mind "reset" for faster brain processing, and of course soaking in that vitamin D we have depleted during the winter months. And with the temperatures rising, it's the perfect time to start spending long Saturday mornings and weeknights in the fresh outdoors. There's nothing quite like a warm evening spent grilling and relaxing in your own outdoor space, whether it be your large patio area or your tiny apartment balcony. However, if you in the latter group, you may think that creating an outdoor oasis is out of reach. But fear not! With a little creativity and some clever design choices, you can create a cozy and inviting outdoor area even if you have limited outdoor space. Here are some tips to get you started no matter what you are working with:
Determine your space
It may seem obvious, but the first step to creating an outdoor oasis is to determine your space. This can be a balcony, a patio, or even a small corner of your yard. Once you know how much space you have to work with, you can start planning.
Choose the right accessories
Even on the tiniest balcony, you can likely fit a small charcoal grill, which is the quintessential summer outdoor accessory. Choose a grill that fits your space and your needs. If you are lucky enough to have a large outdoor space, you can get more elaborate with what you include in your space. There are countless options ranging from outdoor sinks, range hoods, and even outdoor pizza ovens! Note that if you go this route, you will likely need a contractor or expert to help you plan optimal flow. If you do have a large space, consider making focal points for other outdoor activities such as corn hole, tetherball, or croquet.
Plan your seating
The next step is to plan your seating. If you don't have a lot of space, consider using benches or built-in seating that can be tucked away when not in use. You can also use foldable chairs or stools that can be stored in a small space. If you are lucky enough to have more space, this is the perfect place for an outdoor fire pit to roast after dinner s'mores with the family. Be sure that if your furniture is not mobile it is weather-proof for those pesky afternoon thunderstorms. Investing here in something that will not rust is a good idea. Additionally, you should consider a large umbrella or retractable awning to shield you from those harsh elements (including the deep south sunshine!)
Add some greenery
Even if you don't have a big yard, adding some greenery can create a cozy and inviting outdoor space. Consider using potted plants or hanging plants that don't take up too much space. You can also use a trellis or wall planter to add some greenery to your space. If you have a small semi-private balcony consider using artificial ivy walls to help create an oasis like feel and creating full privacy.
Finally, adding some lighting can help create a cozy and inviting atmosphere in your outdoor space, especially at night. You can use string lights, lanterns, or even solar-powered lights to create a warm glow. Be sure to keep citronella candles on hand to deter mosquitos and other critters from encroaching on your hangout spot.
Creating an outdoor oasis is easy and can be affordable depending on how much available space you have. You can always start small with a few details and then continue to add on as your budget and time allows. The idea is to spend time outside away from smartphones and the chaos of everyday life and simply enjoy the great outdoors. It doesn't have to be picture perfect. So go ahead and start planning your outdoor oasis today!