Landscape Lifestyle:Four Tips to Creating Your Customized Backyard

(ARA) - Want to expand your living space without the cost of adding on? A great place to add living space is right out your back door.

Through creative landscaping, homeowners are discovering the benefits of turning under-used yards into another "room" for entertaining or relaxing. These economics support the idea:

  • More livable space at a fraction of the cost of adding rooms
  • Increased resale appeal and value
  • Turning unused space into a valuable asset

The possibilities are endless, says Robert Allan Gravier, landscape expert and president of Minnesota-based Allan Block Corporation. "Many of our customers are converting wasted space into extensions of their homes", Gravier said. He shared four ways forward-thinking homeowners are transforming their outdoor space.

  1. More than a patio. The days of throwing a few pavers on a sand bed to create a patio are gone, according to Gravier. Rather, homeowners are asking for multi-tiered backyards featuring seating areas, flowerbeds, an area for the grill and even an outdoor fireplace. "With decorative, easy-to-install block, homeowners find that they can add dimension and style to their yards at a very reasonable cost", Gravier said.
  2. Conquer that hillside. For some homeowners, their yards present landscaping challenges such as steep hills that steal space and compromise utility. Block walls with terraced gardens can tame hillsides and create more useable outdoor space, Gravier said. "While you may need a landscape contractor to help you with a job like this, a terraced wall constructed of beautiful decorative block can turn an eyesore into a remarkable asset."
  3. Timber! A favorite landscaping tool for decades has been treated wood. But after a few years, the timbers become discolored and begin to rot - not to mention, they pose a threat because of the wood treatment chemicals. Homeowners are switching to lasting and environmentally friendly decorative block walls as a solution for replacing timber walls, planters or flowerbeds, said Gravier.
  4. Outdoor oasis. Many homeowners are seeking a quiet sanctuary for escape from the rat race. The yard can be the answer - an outdoor oasis with a personal, cozy cove to relax and rejuvenate. According to Gravier, the options for customized landscaping have never been greater. "Incorporating decorative walls easily adds character and can personalize the space in your yard", he said

For complex landscaping jobs such as building tiers and multiple sets of stairs or walls greater than six feet high, homeowners will want to work with a landscape contractor. For more basic landscaping jobs, such as walls less than six feet, homeowners can look to their landscape supply store for products and installation instructions.

Allan Block has more advice to offer homeowners considering enhancing their outdoor living experience. For additional information, send an email to or visit our Web site at Courtesy of ARA Content



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Allan Block Corporation
Phone: 952-835-5309 Fax: 952-835-0013