Outdoor Living Trends for 2017


Outdoor Fire Pit for Pottstown Client

What new horizons for you in 2017?  Check out these landscaping trends and see if you’re inspired to add one to your outdoor living area.  Some of these trends are what we see and observe from our clients and their requests.  Other ideas come from the Garden Media Group who do extensive research on global consumer trends.  One thing for sure, homeowners crave their backyard getaways and families are looking to their outdoor spaces as an extension of their home.

Home is Where the Hearth Is

Homeowners continue to spend more time in their outdoor living areas than inside.  They want to are create comfortable spots for dining and entertaining.  It used to be that roasting marshmallows and telling stories around a campfire were part of the annual family vacation.  But we now make this tradition part of our outdoor living with outdoor fire pits and fireplaces.

LED Lighting for front entrance in Spring City, PA

LED Lighting

Interest continues in outdoor lighting so families can enjoy their outdoor spaces longer.    Homeowners are using solar LEDs to uplight important trees, specimen plants and architectural features.  The trend toward larger and more individualized outdoor spaces make it a popular upgrade to enhance the outdoor experience.  New innovations include brighter and more efficient LED bulbs and the convenience of lighting systems controlled by mobile apps.

Dwarf Shrubs

Demand for compact shrubs and container gardens continue to grow.  American yards are shrinking as houses grow larger on even smaller lots.  Along with less space for plants, families are wanting gardens that require far less maintenance.  Dwarf shrubs to the rescue!  If you only need a 2- foot shrub, why plant something that’ll grow to 6 feet and then spend the next 20 years trimming it?  It’s all about plants that are in scale for the space.  Dwarf versions of plants are favorites in containers, such as Petite Plum Ninebark, Coco Krunch Weigela, ‘Bobo” hydrangea.  Evergreen dwarf shrubs are particularly popular and cut down on maintenance. Read more about dwarf conifers for the garden.

Native Plants

Everyone benefits from plants that survive in the challenges of their own climate and homeowners are interested in installing plants that have low water use, promote biodiversity and attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies. See Native Plants.

Spotlight on Gold

When it comes to golden foliage, the garden just can’t have enough.  Pops of gold warm up spaces and create the feeling of outdoor rooms.  Plants such as Katsura Japanese Maple, Carex and Goldy arborvitae help gardens glitter.


Studies examine how sounds – or lack of sounds – indicate the ecological health of a landscape and the health of our lives.  Trees add bird songs and buffer sirens.  Water features sooth and refresh and they continue to be a popular feature in backyards plus they provide a drink to creatures large and small. Landscaping designs that feature water can fit nearly any budget; from a simple fountain to a custom built waterfall.  Water features sooth and refresh.

Pond with Waterfall Installed for Schwenksville Client

Pond with Waterfall installed for Schwenksville client.

Wellness Hotspots

Forest Bathing is considered by many to be the latest fitness trend to hit the U.S.  It is the “medicine of being in the forest” and spending time in nature awakening all five senses.  Forest bathing is today where yoga was 30 years ago.  Research shows time spent in nature reduces stress and increases well-being.

Inspire yourself with your favorite trend that you’d like to create in your own backyard.

For over 20 years, Whitehouse Landscaping has been working with clients to create beautiful landscapes. We are a dependable design-build firm who is knowledgeable and experienced in everything outdoors    Along with the latest trends, we can provide services for all of your other landscape needs.  If you have any questions about your property this upcoming year, or you want to schedule a consultation, get in touch or call 484-300-4290.   We’re happy to help!