Indoors Out…. Unique ways to add outdoor living space


When Lanny & Carol Lang bought their Lakewood home in Ahwatukee back in 1986, they were among the first of many families to settle in the area. As original owners, they have seen a lot of changes. Their children have now moved onto college and beyond. Being empty nesters, they desired to make some modifications at home to compliment their new found lifestyle. Both being the outdoor type and very active, what a better way to start than by creating a functional, great new look with unused space, and at the same time giving their Lakewood home brand new curb appeal. Based on the sun … [Read more...]

Patio Material Options! …what to choose when extending your living space


Are you thinking about extending your living space by using more of your front or back yards? No doubt that adding living space will require additional patio for dining or other recreational use. What are my choices you may be asking yourself…well, please allow me to assist here and give you numerous options. We’ll touch upon what materials we can use, the differences in cost, and longevity & maintenance. The two most popular “flatwork” options besides standard grey concrete are pavers and flagstone. There are of course others like: exposed aggregate & stamped or stained concrete, … [Read more...]

SPAS & SURROUNDS…Relax & Enjoy


So you’ve managed to make it through another long day at the office or a tough day with the kids, and all you can think about is a quiet moment to yourself. One of the most popular ways to relax and recharge is spending 30 minutes in the hot tub to massage those aching muscles and put your mind at ease for a good night sleep. WHAT? You don’t have a spa? Then you don’t know what you are missing! Well if you do or don’t have a spa, I want to share with you one of the more popular backyard trends…SPA SURROUNDS! There are so many options here and I’d like to share my expertise with you. There … [Read more...]

Tips on filling your landscape wish list while saving big bucks


So you have decided to do a landscape make over, but unfortunately, your grandiose vision and your budget aren’t in the same solar system…welcome to the club! There is good news, so follow me here. You can fill a good portion of your wish list cheaper than you think by making a couple of key choices and doing the following: First, get on the same page with your wife or significant other as to exactly what the both of you want. Create a vision with your partner that you can confidently share with your designer/contractor without disagreeing in front of them. Second, take measurements of the … [Read more...]

The Beauty & Tranquility of Water Features

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In all the years I have been a practicing landscape contractor, I don’t think I have ever come across a potential client that does not like a good water feature if it’s in the budget. Even if it’s out of their budget, everyone I meet would love to have one. There is nothing like the beauty of a custom water feature and the tranquil sounds they make. An artistic and strategically placed water feature will lull even the most restless to sleep. Having two on my own property, I can really relate to that. They complement any backyard recreational space and add great curb appeal if placed in the … [Read more...]

Triple Digits are here so…It’s all about SHADE

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I am sitting here writing this on one of our first 100 degree days in 2014. Let’s just hope we don’t have too many 110 degree plus days this summer…ugh!!! If you are an outdoor enthusiast and love spending time by the pool or patio no matter what the temperature, having relief near by is always welcome. Over the years, I have built dozens of shade structures using a variety of different materials. Before we go into the numerous options, let’s talk about the many names we use to describe them and their associated meanings. Gazebos, Arbors, Ramada’s, Pergolas are the most common names, but what … [Read more...]

Going Green……in more ways than one

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Have you been driving around your neighborhood recently and suddenly noticed?... Wow…that home has a lush green lawn. It looks perfect and makes the home stand out nicely too. Well, if you take a closer look, there’s a very good chance it’s artificial. YES! The technology is available now for what the industry calls “synthetic turf”. When HOA’s in Ahwatukee created their CC&R’s, as long as 20 years ago in many communities, there were strict guidelines against any form of artificial turf in the front yard...and for good reason...artificial turf was more like indoor/outdoor carpet; … [Read more...]


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New Ways to Entertain with an Old Favorite. Although I have lived in Arizona for over 20 years, I am still amazed every spring at the absolute perfect weather we have at this time of the year. There is hardly an evening that goes by when my family and I are not outside enjoying our yard. It is truly the most used space of our home. Families all over the valley are recognizing just how wonderful outdoor living can be and are creating valuable and useable new spaces to enhance their lifestyle. If you are thinking about any landscape or hardscape additions to your home, you could not find a … [Read more...]

Now is a great time to extend your outdoor living space

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Now is a great time to extend your outdoor living space…here is how and why! As a professional landscape designer and contractor, I am a strong proponent that investing money on the outside, if done correctly, can add substantial equity similar to remodeling the kitchen or bath. Returns on that type of remodel I would imagine would be slightly higher, but my 40 years experience in construction & real estate supports my claim. Unless you are living in a very upscale community where you are trying to keep up with the Jones’s, most homes here in Ahwatukee people would drive by without … [Read more...]

Sample Landscape Designs

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Finding the right landscape designer/builder for your outdoor living needs can sometimes be a challenge.  Outside Living Concepts is recognized as one of the most reputable landscape design & build companies in the valley. Here are a few examples of our design work allowing you to see the details we put into every project.  Each of the follow designs are recent & current projects with each homeowner having a different landscape goal. Please call or email us and so we can talk about your project and set an appointment with one of our design team. Let us show you our version of the … [Read more...]