patio and garden

Designing Your Patio And Garden

Having a patio and garden is a surefire way to enjoy outdoor living at its finest. What else is better than sitting with family and friends enjoying a cold beverage right outside your backdoor? Well, let’s see… Maybe if you’re also grilling some fresh vegetables picked that morning from your own garden. Patios and gardens come in all shapes, sizes and designs… and we can take advantage of them, weather permitting, almost all year ‘round in North Carolina. But one thing is certain: People with patios and gardens swear by them. Once you have one—or both—life just wouldn’t be the same without them. 

If you have a patio, maybe it’s time to redesign it. Don’t have a garden yet? The options are endless. It doesn’t take a design degree to start thinking about your dream patio and garden. Just bring your imagination. 

Heritage Block provides a few simple steps to help you design a patio and garden with your own special touches.

Everything Starts With Purpose

Before you begin designing your patio or garden, first consider what the purpose will be. Do you see yourself and significant other sitting side-by-side enjoying coffee outside? Maybe your patio will be a quiet place for you to do some bird watching. Perhaps a big family gathering with a buffet style cookout is more your speed. Big… small… open… secluded… Decisions, decisions.

Designing a garden is also limitless. A simple flowerbed garden is much different from having a 1/4 acre vegetable garden… Are you really ready to do that much weeding? Perhaps even a combination of flowers, vegetables and herbs. 

Whatever your heart may desire, thinking about the purpose of your patio and garden is the first consideration when designing one. 

Location, Location, Location

Now that we can set aside the dream of riding a harvester through acres of corn… The location of your garden or patio is a one-time decision. Choose badly, and you could end up with sweetgum balls covering your pavers… Or worse. 

Most patios are adjacent to the house. But a location away from the dwelling may provide a welcome secluded hideaway. Do you want a shady or sunny spot? Clearly if you’re using the space for eating outside, you might want to be close to the house as possible. You should consider whether the location you select is level or sloped. The drainage and ground soil may also be factors. Finally, any underground features or structures should be taken into consideration. For example, do not build your patio on top of a buried septic tank.

The location of your garden is a little less involved, depending on the type. The first thing to consider is sun optimization: Which areas of your yard receive the most sunlight? Or maybe you want to have a garden of plants that don’t need substantial amounts of direct sunlight. The second thing to consider is drainage. Planting a garden in a poor drainage area is a no-go. You don’t want to end up with rot or fungus on your carefully planted plants. 

A garden with a retaining wall or raised bed may require additional considerations such as soil type, slope, curves and adjacent property structures. 

Also, before you start breaking ground, make sure there are no cables, gas lines or water pipes in the area. 

Size Matters

The purpose of your patio and garden will govern how large you want them to be. So once you select the location, make sure you have enough space to create the landscape you desire. For gardens you may want to consider a raised bed, retaining wall or a bordering component. Measuring the size of both the patio and garden will help determine the amount of materials necessary to complete the job. 

Choosing Your Patio And Garden Materials

Patios are usually made of concrete, bricks, pavers, slate, tile, cut stone and pea gravel—to name a few materials. The materials you choose will be based upon your personal preference, location, purpose and budget. Each material has unique benefits such as ease of installation, maintenance, durability, colors and design capabilities.

The colors of a patio or garden should complement the colors of the house and the surrounding environment, thereby providing a natural and consistent color flow to the property. 

Be Creative

After selecting the materials, the fun part begins. The possibilities are yours and yours alone. Just like a home, the fixtures and accessories for your patio or garden may be an extension of you and your own style. There are many other features and items that can make your patio or garden pop. Accessories of your choosing will turn it into a place you where you want to spend more time outside with family and friends.

Have you considered whether you want a pergola, patio cover or a ramada? A firepit, raised patio or retaining wall? Lights… fountains… a grilling station? Planters or a garden wall? How about an underground watering system? A fence or barrier to keep out the deer? A raised flowerbed? 

For some additional ideas, here are some patios from our collection.

Choosing A Contractor For Your Patio And Garden

There’s probably no need for a contractor if you are only building a casual vegetable garden. A little sweat equity is all that’s warranted. In contrast, building a patio can be time consuming and a challenge for even the most skilled DIYer. Hiring a contractor to construct the patio you desire is quite possibly the wise choice.

One final note: You may also want to check your local building codes for any setback or other regulations concerning building a patio or retaining walls.



Our blocks can transform any outdoor space into a unique masterpiece… The options are truly LIMITLESS. For everything you need to plan, design and build the perfect garden or retaining wall for your next project, contact us today: (919) 562-5005

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