How to create an all-family outdoor lounge

A family turns its unused backyard into a place to eat, drink, and play all year

A plain, old yard

Jennifer Cheung

A plain, old yard

For Darren and Sheila Burris, life’s sweetest moments unfold in their backyard over dinners with their children, Sierra, 13, and Reef, 5. That wasn’t always the case; before the remodel, “there was nothing to go out to,” says Darren. “The yard was spacious but plain, without much personality.”

After: Space savored

Jennifer Cheung

After: Space savored

To help entice the family outdoors, Los Angeles landscape designer Steve Siegrist halved the lawn—leaving enough for the kids to play on—and ditched the family’s old hot tub. Then, inspired by the couple’s love of the tropics and the beach (they’re surfers), Siegrist built an open-air lounge and dining patio, separated by a cooling lily pond. Now, says Darren, “we spend as much time outside as we do inside.” Design: stevesiegristdesign.com

Soft lighting

Jennifer Cheung

Soft lighting

Low-voltage fixtures set the wall and fence aglow, helped by votives hung from the fence and Indian lanterns in the schefflera tree.

 

Recycled seating

Jennifer Cheung

Recycled seating

Bench seats are concrete slabs, recycled from the demolished back half of the driveway. Backrests, made of mangaris (red balau) wood salvaged from the hot tub, are just the right angle for reclining.

 

Bold color

Jennifer Cheung

Bold color

An existing stuccoed concrete wall, painted orange and capped with stained redwood, visually warms the space. Falling Leaves paint, S-H-240; behr.com. Dark Slate stain; cabotstain.com.

Tropical plants

Jennifer Cheung

Tropical plants

Aeoniums and echeverias add tropical heat, on little water. Sedum nussbaumerianum fringes the firepit.

Natural fencing

Jennifer Cheung

Natural fencing

Clumping ‘Alphonse Karr’ bamboo hides the neighbors’ roofs while string lights play up the plants’ yellow-green foliage.

 

Vintage touch

Jennifer Cheung

Vintage touch

A 1970s wood-burning fireplace, which Sheila found on Craigslist, is seldom used to heat the space, but it enhances the dining patio’s cozy feeling.

 

Lily pond

Jennifer Cheung

Lily pond

Cannas and water lilies grow in a pool of water. The frame, made of treated lumber stained to match the fence, has a pond liner inside.

 

Modern firepit

Jennifer Cheung

Modern firepit

With the turn of a valve on the concrete firepit’s side, the flame dances to life. Crushed glass inside won’t spark as it heats.

Clever trick

Jennifer Cheung

Clever trick

Sedum fills gaps at the base of the bench, eliminating the concrete-city effect.

Printed from:
http://www.sunset.com/garden/landscaping-design/outdoor-lounge-00418000082998/