If you are tasked with designing an outdoor area at your office, or you are looking to create the perfect place for that early morning coffee, where concrete is a major player, it is always a good idea to introduce natural greenery if at all possible. While most people think concrete is drab and colourless, you can achieve some unique layouts using this popular building material, and with that in mind, here are some urban outdoor design ideas to give you some inspiration.
- Concrete Planters – If you search online, you will find suppliers of commercial pots that house trees, shrubs and plants, and they come in a wide range of colours, shapes and sizes. This is a great way to introduce natural greenery, with glass reinforced concrete (GRC) that is eco-friendly and the ideal material for pots and planters. A series of rectangular planters can bring in a row of small, green conifers, and they can easily be relocated at any time, should you wish to change the look for any reason.
- Hanging Baskets – If you have a concrete wall, you can affix a thin netting, and this can hold handing flower baskets to give you a wall of greenery. You can make these nets yourself, or purchase from an online supplier, and with some concrete nails at the top, you can hang the net from the top. Another idea is to hang plants from concrete posts, wrapping them around several times to disguise the post with greenery.
- Roof Trellis – If you create a trellis timber framework as a roof, and cover this with netting, you can then plant creeping vines and they would cover the frame after a few months of growth. Once you have a covering, you can weave LED lighting strips through the trellis, bringing a warm, soft glow to the area, and if the ceiling is high enough, you can let the vines hang down a little, for a dreamy effect.
- Retaining Wall – If you are looking for some planting space, why not build a low retaining wall? This will allow you to plant shrubs and plants, simply add topsoil when the wall is finished and you are good to go. You could acquire some Yorkshire stone, which matches the colour of the soil, adding to the rustic look.
It is important to introduce some natural greenery into an urban concrete setting, and the above are just a few ways that you can do that. If you have an exterior wall, it is easy enough to fix a net or timber trellis, which will provide growing space for vines or ferns, plus with clever use of recycled materials, you can create small containers for growing plants and shrubs.
If you are in need of concrete pots or planters, search online for a supplier who would have a wide range of units, made from GRC, which is an eco-friendly material that is suitable for exterior use.