Spectacular Spring is upon us in the Okanagan!
Spending time enjoying your outdoor space is one of the luxuries of calling Kelowna ‘home’! Feeling like you have an oasis of your own comes down to one simple thing – privacy. I am excited to share some creative ways you can create privacy and maximize the use of your personal outdoor space this season.
Natural Privacy Enhancements
If you have a yard and are permitted to landscape, you have the luxury of being able to add natural privacy enhancements in the form of trees, tall grasses or shrubs! Plants have the benefit of blending in with the natural landscape and can be strategically placed in certain areas that need additional privacy or you can create a hedge surrounding your property, if need be. Start by getting an idea of the spaces you need to fill in order to get the level of privacy you want. Think about whether you want trees or bushes or climbing plants and if you want to add colour or to stick with something green. I recommend having a landscaper or local nursery assist you in selecting the best plants to suit your needs and to ensure you can enjoy your natural privacy enhancements for many years to come!
Fences and Walls
Depending on the rules and bylaws in place for your home, erecting a fence or wall may be an option to increase privacy around your Kelowna home. Fences come in many materials and designs to suit different tastes. A wall might sound cold at first but you can customize to include cool features like vertical herb gardens or decorative tiling so they don’t feel so institutional. Whatever style you choose, using fences or walls can definitely be a great way to make your home more private for you to enjoy! (If you aren’t able to install a permanent wall or fence, check out my tips below to “Privatize in Zones”).
It may be the case that you need to muffle undesirable noises like traffic or the conversations of nearby-neighbours. This is a great reason to install a water feature of some kind – a fountain, pond or simulated babbling brook. If installing a permanent water feature isn’t an option, there are many portable fountains available. It’s been proven that the sound of moving water has a calming effect on the human brain so I encourage you to include soothing water sounds in your secluded paradise, if at all possible.
Privatize in Zones
Sometimes it simply isn’t an option to make your entire outdoor space private. If you find yourself in this situation, don’t fret - privacy structures and plants don’t have to border your property or even be permanent to be effective! Look for locations on your property that offer natural privacy and find creative ways to enhance them. You could use portable screen dividers beside a patio table to create an intimate space to sit and read or sip iced tea. You could add lattice to one side of a deck and perhaps add a climbing vine to section off an area for hanging out with family and friends. You could add planters to a balcony or make a curtain out of outdoor fabric to create private getaway locations throughout your property. All of these can be achieved without too much effort or expense and will definitely add to the quality of your private time!
As you can probably tell, I have lots of ideas about how to modify your outdoor space to maximize privacy and enjoyment for you and your family. If you are struggling to find peace in your Okanagan oasis, or if you are still searching for your slice of heaven in Kelowna, get in touch with me – I’d love to talk more about what you want and need from your home!
Written by: Karen Borring-Olsen for the Meeting of the Minds Blog