WASHINGTON – A recent survey by the American Society of Landscape Architects suggests homeowners want function, efficiency and fire pits in their outdoor space.

The ASLA Residential Trends Survey asked residential
landscape architecture professionals to rate the expected popularity of dozens of different outdoor living and landscape features for this year.

For 2011, the top outdoor living features are: light, fire, food and a place to sit and enjoy it all. Overall, 96.2% of respondents rated exterior lighting as somewhat or very popular for this year, followed by fire pits/fireplaces (94.2%), seating/dining areas (94.1%), grills (93.8%) and installed seating like benches or seat walls (89.5%).

While the most popular outdoor features reflect an enduring sensibility, the interest in modern technology like stereo systems (58.3%), Internet access (46.3%) and televisions (45.4%) adds to the growing trend of taking what we enjoy inside to the outdoors – up to a point. Only 10.4% of respondents thought outdoor sleeping areas would be popular this year.

“Despite the economic climate, homeowners continue to reconnect with their outdoor space. However, expect many households this year to either phase in projects over time or carefully select fewer features,” said ASLA Executive Vice President and CEO Nancy Somerville, Hon. ASLA.

Posted by Karen Koenig

Have something to say? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.