Outdoor Living Trends for Homeowners in Utah

Pushing the boundaries of contemporary outdoor living

If the last few years have taught us anything, it’s the impact our living spaces have on our overall well-being. Focus on lifestyle, emerging technology and sustainability are the trends that will influence the way we design, decorate, and maintain our outdoor spaces into the foreseeable future.

We are becoming increasingly aware of the links that exist between our living spaces, the quality of our lives and the relationship we have with the world around us. At Sunline, this means we will continue to push the boundaries of outdoor living by crafting unique and inspiring spaces that connect people with each other… and with nature.

Sensory gardens

As more people prioritize wellness and a tranquil environment, the demand for sensory gardens is gaining popularity among affluent homeowners in Utah.

Creating a sensory garden involves carefully designing and selecting elements that engage the five senses — sight, smell, touch, taste, and sound — offering educational experiences for your family and a serene retreat where you can relax after a busy day at work.  

Here are some steps to help you create a sensory garden for yourself.

  • Plan and Design — Consider the available space, sunlight, soil conditions and any specific sensory experiences you want to include in your garden.

  • Choose Plants — Select a range of plants that stimulate the senses. Think beautiful flowers and foliage for visual appeal, fragrant herbs and blossoms, plants with interesting textures and edible plants for you to pick and enjoy. 

  • Include a comfortable seating area — Provide comfortable seating areas in your garden where you and your guests can relax and fully immerse yourselves in the sensory experience.

The key to a successful sensory garden lies in creating a harmonious balance between the senses. Don’t be afraid to experiment! Be creative and enjoy the process — your sensory garden should be unique to you and filled with all the elements that bring you joy.

Naturalized landscapes

The trend toward a more organic and natural approach will continue in 2024. Homeowners are embracing the beauty of wildflowers, the hardiness of native plants and the freedom afforded by unstructured garden designs. 

Here are the basic principles behind a naturalized landscape:

  • Resist the temptation to make everything “perfect” — Naturalized landscapes are not heavily manicured. The idea is to leave existing native plant species as undisturbed as possible, so you can’t tell where the natural world ends and your landscape begins.

  • Decide how natural you want your yard to be — It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Consider the surrounding landscape, the architectural style of your home, the size and characteristics of your property and the features you’d like in your landscape. All are going to play a role in designing a naturalized landscape that’s right for you. If you have trouble envisioning this, our designers can help. 

  • Embrace the “randomness” of naturalized landscapes — Nature is pretty laid back, and you’ll see a mix of open spaces and transitional areas. What you won’t see is a straight line. Naturalized landscapes are in a continuous flux, altering our landscape's natural and exciting changes over time.

  • Preserve water naturally — Naturalized landscapes help prevent runoff and erosion, and many include rain gardens, ponds, wet basins and porous paving materials. Pair that with a smart irrigation system, and watering becomes less of a burden.

  • Reconsider expansive lawns and exotic plants — A large sweeping lawn composed of turf grass is a monoculture and runs contrary to the philosophy behind naturalized landscapes. Instead, consider native grasses mixed with broadleaf plants and wildflower meadows — great for the environment and attracting butterflies and bees.

As you can see, this continuing shift towards a more eco-friendly and sustainable landscaping style benefits the environment while creating a landscape that is inviting, beautiful and in tune with nature.

Pickleball courts

Pickleball is the fastest growing sport in America, and pickleball courts have been popping up in backyards and community centers all across the country. A cross between ping pong, badminton, and tennis, this fast-paced sport is a fun and engaging activity that’ll get everyone involved — and be the focal point of your next gathering.
Because of pickleball's rising popularity, having a pickleball court in your yard does more than bring your family together for an afternoon of fun — having one can increase your home’s value and has become a selling point for many homebuyers.

Blur the boundaries between indoor and outdoor living spaces 

This trend includes expansive glass doors and outdoor living areas that flow seamlessly from the interior, creating a cohesive and connected living experience.

  • Luxury outdoor kitchens — Outdoor kitchens have become a staple of high-end homes, and they’ll continue to evolve with the addition of more luxurious features, such as high-quality appliances, built-in grills, pizza ovens, wine refrigerators and more.

  • Resort-inspired amenities — A lot of people are transforming their outdoors into a luxurious experience, similar to that found at high-end resorts. This could include features such as plunge pools, outdoor theaters, gaming areas or even dedicated spaces for yoga and meditation.

  • Outdoor living spaces — Comfortable and cozy outdoor living spaces, that let you use your outdoor areas even after summer has gone, are on the rise. This includes incorporating outdoor heaters, fireplaces, covered patios, pergolas and plenty of seating options in your landscape design.

Embrace technology

Technology will continue to be at the forefront of creative landscape design. This includes outdoor audio, lighting and smart irrigation systems. The quality of this outdoor equipment is only surpassed by how easy it is to use, requiring nothing more to operate than your mobile device and a reliable WiFi connection.

At Sunline Landscapes, we’re passionate about helping you create memorable weekends at home, surrounded by family and friends. We believe that our homes are a reflection of our personal values and are constantly seeing ways to enhance your outdoor living while protecting the environment.

If you’re interested in learning more about emerging design trends or are ready to design your new landscape, book a consultation and tell us about your vision for your property. We’re here to help!