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PRO
K&D Landscape Management

Your points on site advantages, basic function and privacy are insightful. Those come into play on every back yard environment we are involved with. How each space is developed for individual clients varies widely based on those factors and the others you listed.
Here is a small space urban environment versus a larger space suburban environment, contrasting how designs vary from project to project based on needs and available space.


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PRO
David Thorne Landscape Architect

A must read! All of these factors must be considered before crafting a unique landscape design.

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Cora

In the southwest we all want a patio. This is a great article as it points out a lot of practicalities such as electrical, sources, drainage, coverings. I'm in a small city and have a small yard and there weren't that many choices about it. But mine is right off the kitchen-practical for alfresco dining. It has one power outlet. You are generally going to need rain and moisture protection for that outlet or face expensive re-dos. Experience speaking here. Power also allows you to plug in a fan as well as a lamp. It has a canvas awning cover which is attractive and cool. Another advantage of having it right by the back door is as a staging area for bringing the groceries in, using the table as a potting bench, bringing the Chromebook out to read the N Y Times in the fresh air, paying bills ditto. My family and friends have spent many happy hours there. With a full covering-awning as opposed to lattice , children can still be outdoors in the rain. I find I do not so much need a mudroom either as shoes can be removed out there when need be. A remote patio is nice if you are on a ranch under the stars but most of us don't have the acreage. All of the pictures were pretty.

   

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