As masters of their craft, Unilock Authorized Contractors utilize a number of techniques to customize and tweak landscape designs to create outstanding effects. Here are a number of small details that can completely transform a landscape design by adding contrast, warmth and, in some cases, even additional durability:
Borders and Accents
Adding borders and accents to your hardscape is one way that a landscape contractor can accentuate or contrast the primary pavers that you’ve chosen for your patio and outdoor areas. It’s also a way to create subtle separation between the areas, by marking off the beginning of one outdoor room and the start of another without using vertical dividers. For example, you might choose to have your outdoor kitchen distinguished from your outdoor dining or lounging area, or demarcate your outdoor fireplace area by using a contrasting material, such as that achieved by pairing Richcliff primary pavers with a Courtstone border or Copthorne pavers with a Brussels Block border in the Sandstone color option. In addition, accents can include inlays of various kinds, such as large compass point inlays in driveways and courtyards or simple paver rug inlays in outdoor lounge areas. The overall effect of borders and accents is remarkable and can help to tie in various elements of a hardscape design.
Related Read: Why Unilock Natural Stone?
Banding for Vertical Features
Similar to bordering, bands of color along the vertical features of your hardscape is known as banding. This effect can help to visually unite your low walls, seating walls, fire features, and retaining walls with the patio surface. For example, by adding Copthorne banding to the low Brussels Dimensional System walls enclosing your patio, a landscape contractor can help to accentuate an inlaid paver rug that has been used to anchor your outdoor dining room design. Alternatively, the color of your banding can be used to unite vertical systems with other elements in the landscape, such as water features, boulder arrangements, or even the color of your home.
Matching Materials to the Home’s Architecture
To create a unified design, your materials can be chosen to ensure that your home and hardscape conform to a similar design style. For example, a home with modern architecture can be matched to a paver with a similar modern style such as Artline pavers, while a home with a historical style can be matched with pavers with a corresponding aesthetic, such as Town Hall pavers. Texture and color can also be repeated in the pavers and wall units chosen for the hardscape. For example, the texture of natural stone cladding used on the exterior of a home can be repeated by using a richly textured paver, such as Beacon Hill Flagstone or even a wall unit with ultra-realistic detail, such as Rivercrest Wall. Unilock wall units and concrete pavers come in a wide range of styles and colors so that you can find the perfect match for your home.
Reinforcing Hardscapes with Unilock DriveGrid
While this detail is invisible once the project is complete, by incorporating a Unilock DriveGrid as part of your hardscape’s foundation, a Unilock Authorized Contractor can extend the lifetime of your project, reduce material costs, and provide greater stability to areas that will see extensive vehicular traffic. A Unilock DriveGrid can also be used to stabilize soil types that are more prone to shifting, and can be used on areas where only limited excavation is possible, reducing the depth required for the base. The Unilock DriveGrid features a triangulated system that stabilizes ground and aggregate in 360 degrees, guarding against freeze/thaw cycles, and laterally distributing downward forces.
As well as being an attractive finishing detail for hardscapes, pillars add function and form to wall systems. The flat surface they present provides additional space for lighting fixtures, potted plants, and can even serve as a podium for drink and snack trays when entertaining. Wall units, such as Rivercrest Wall, feature a Rapid Pillar System, which a Unilock Authorized Contractor can use to quickly construct sturdy and attractive pillars where they will contribute to the aesthetics of your hardscape.
As a finishing detail, coping can have a huge effect on the first impression of a patio design. In addition to adding variation, rich detail, and cohesion to vertical structures, coping performs a protective function and can contribute to the longevity of walls and steps. Moreover, poolside coping is an absolute must. Depending on your preferences, you can select from a range of coping options from Unilock, such as Natural Stone Coping in either Sandstone or Limestone, Brussels Fullnose Coping or Ledgestone. With Unilock Premium Quality Natural Stone coping options, you may opt for either a Natural Edge or Fullnose Coping. Ledgestone, too, comes in both Fullnose and an attractive ledge rock edge coping option.
Incorporating Cutting Edge Technology
Unilock pavers are manufactured using a variety of technologies that are cutting-edge in the field. These technologies include, but are not limited to, EasyClean Stain Resistance, as seen in Umbriano and Artline pavers; EnduraColor Facemix Technology, which enhances and extends the lifetime of the paver’s colors; and Ultima Concrete Technology for superior strength, as seen in the pavers of the Elegance collection. In addition, Reala Surface Technology is used to achieve the ultra-realistic details seen in Richcliff, Courtstone, Town Hall, and Copthorne pavers, as well as Rivercrest Wall. Using pavers that are equipped with these technologies, you can reap the benefits of greater durability, long-lasting colors, and unrivaled aesthetics.
A Unilock Authorized Contractor can help make your landscape a magical evening setting by including strategic outdoor lighting in the design. Outdoor lighting can be incorporated as decorative fixtures, as well as through discreet placement beneath the coping of walls and other vertical features. After dark, this small detail can have a profound effect on the overall design of your landscape.
While a permeable hardscape surface can barely be visually discerned from a non-permeable one, the benefits can be far-reaching. Using permeable installation methods, pavers such as Thornbury can aid drainage, bypass regulatory limitations on non-permeable hardscapes, and contribute to an environmentally friendly landscape. Permeable hardscapes allow rainwater to flow through them and return to natural subterranean water reservoirs and take the strain off stormwater drains and waterways.
Paver Laying Patterns and Direction
The laying pattern you choose for your patio, walkway, driveway, or pool deck pavers can make a marked difference to the aesthetic of the space. A randomized laying pattern can help to enhance a naturalistic theme by creating an organic effect. Equally, for a more ordered appeal, a gridlike, or simple running bond pattern may be all you need. Additionally, a simple change in the direction of your paver laying pattern can lead the eye to key features or make the area feel wider or narrower depending on which dimension you’d like to enhance. Changing the direction of a laying pattern from one outdoor room to the next will help to differentiate between the two and create visual interest. Talk to a Unilock Authorized Contractor today for help in deciding how best to take advantage of these small details for a landscape that will be rich in charm and personality.
The title image features a Copthorne patio with Brussels Block accents and Brussels Dimensional System verticals.