What are Hardscapes?

What are Hardscapes and Hardscaping?

Does Hardscaping sounds hard?  It’s really pretty simple.

You can think of hardscapes as simply an outdoor room:  Hardscapes is a term used for patios, landscaped walkways, sitting walls, retaining walls, water features, fire pits, landscape lighting, grill surrounds, pergolas, and more. They are landscape materials brought in to build structures in your yard.

If you walk out your back door and don’t have a designated spot to comfortably sit and enjoy yourself, you probably would not go outside very often.

But if you have a brick patio that has a table and comfy chairs, you probably sit there and enjoy your cup of coffee in the morning or a leisurely dinner in the evening. A place to relax and enjoy the beautiful flowers that are in bloom – that’s the joy that hardscapes bring.

backyard hardscapes include patios around pools

What are Hardscapes in Landscaping?


The term "hardscapes" includes patios, landscaped walkways, sitting walls, retaining walls, water features, fire pits, landscape lighting, grill surrounds, pergolas and any other custom-built feature for your outdoor living space.


No matter what you like to do outside, there’s a hardscape for you. Here are 8 hardscapes that can add beauty, functionality, and joy to your outdoor living:

  1. Sitting Walls
    So you have the patio, but how about adding some extra seating with a sitting wall around the perimeter of the patio? It looks beautiful and also is a great place to sit. With stone columns on each end of the sitting wall, you have a spot to place some awesome planters or add some lighting to your backyard. 
  2. Grill Surrounds
    Like to grill? We can add a grill surround to your patio. A grill surround would be made out of the same stone at the sitting wall, so everything would match. Your grill would be surrounded by the same stone as the sitting wall and a granite countertop could be added around it to give you more cooking space or a place to set your favorite beverage.
  3. Landscaped Walkways
    Walkways make your yard functional and easy to move around. A landscaped walkway or sidewalk made with the same brick pavers as your patio or a nice, large piece of flagstone can easily take you from the patio to a backdoor, side door, raised garden or even to the driveway. Need more walkway ideas? Check out our portfolio.
  4. Retaining Wall
    Does your yard have a steep slope? Retaining walls level out the yard making it flat and functional to add a patio or place to hang out. As another example, soil may need to be contained on the sides of your yard. A retaining wall would do that, making the space much more attractive.
  5. Water Features
    Water features are another part of hardscapes. These can be as simple as a bubbling boulder or fountain but can also be as awesome as an ornamental fish pond that includes a waterfall. You could have pet fish and blooming water plants too.  Ornamental ponds really create a backyard oasis where you can spend hours and hours of enjoyment.
  6. Fire Pits
    Adding a fire pit to your backyard, either included in the patio or off the patio, is a great place to spend cool evenings. Fire pits can be wood burning or have a gas insert. Outdoor fireplaces or your own wood-burning pizza ovens are possible.
  7. Pergolas
    If your backyard is extremely hot and sunny, you might want to consider a pergola on your patio to give some shade. Pergolas can be simple and free-standing or very elaborate and tied onto the back of the house.
  8. Landscape Lighting
    The final touch for your outdoor room would be landscape lighting. Landscape lighting makes your yard come to life after the sun sets.  It can be as simple as path lights along with the patio or walkway, downlights on your sitting wall, up lights in your trees, underwater lights in your ornamental fish pond, and much more. The system is very durable and attractive, it is set up on a digital timer, so really you don’t have to do anything but enjoy!
firepit-cta-E52A8442 copy.jpg

Add a Hardscape to Your Home

Hardscapes are a great way to connect your home to your yard, and they make a huge difference in how you are able to use and enjoy your own yard. Hardscapes are also a worthy investment for the resale value of your house but also for you to enjoy this year! 

Before & After

Check out some landscapes before and after hardscape installation:

front door walkway-before
front door walkway-after
firepit photo before
backyard hardscapes
landscape design before1
poolside landscaping
patio before picture
patio photo after

Looking for Hardscapes near you?

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