Backyard Advice Very Welcome

BritCvS(7a)October 14, 2013

We are finally ready to re-do the back yard
Basic info
We live in Fairfax County, Zip 22033. This is Zone 7a
Main purposes:
1. A place to entertain some, grilling out, 6 adults, 3-5 kids.
2. A place for our boy to play some (he's 4 years old as of October 2013).

We have re-done a dilapidated part of the fence already, and we have felled some trees that were sadly mis-treated by the former owners, and had the stumps ground.

We have found a very good local hardscaping company, and they have provided a rough sketch (see link below and they have a lot of Facebook pictures of their work (link in the follow-up )

Our questions

What do you think generally, all advice welcome.
1. Is the dining terrace to the North (right hand side) big enough to cope with the e.g. Portico dining set?
2. Is it worth considering a pergola around/over the dining area? I'm thinking shade and interest, and screening of the neighbors yard.
3. Where should the grill go? I'm thinking the far side, between the canopy of a crape myrtle and a neighbors large pine. Plus it makes sense to me to have the natural gas line and some electricity spur off to where the grill will be.
4. The smaller "quiet seating area" is quite shady. I'm thinking more cut paving, or possibly random flagstones. The problem I have with the random flags is the filler: I think it's too shady for grass. Maybe small pebbles would work?
OK over to you. I'm good with tools, and we have some. What do you think?

Here is a link that might be useful: sketch

This post was edited by BritCvS on Mon, Oct 14, 13 at 22:09

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BritCvS(7a)

Here is the facebook link to the hardscaping company's photos

Here is a link that might be useful: Classic_Hardscaping

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 10:05PM
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BritCvS(7a)

There is a flickr.com set of (too many) photos of the back yard and the link below. Tomorrow I'll edit to get just the pertinent pictures posted.

Here is a link that might be useful: flickr set

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 10:11PM
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yardvaark

In order to tell if the dining patio is large enough for the d. set, you would need to show plan scale and compare with d. set measurements.

Having a pergola would depend on your level of interest compared to cost. IMO, the oval/round patio shape does not scream for a rectangular/square (as most are) pergola. Other shade and screening might be better/less expensive.

"...I'm thinking the far side, between the canopy of a crape myrtle and a neighbors large pine." From this description, I don't know where this place is. (The smaller notes on the plan are not readable; the plant material is unknown.)

if you surround flagstone with pebbles, I think you will lose the nice effect. I would explore if there is a groundcover that would work with the low light conditions.

general notes about plan ...

    Bookmark   October 14, 2013 at 11:48PM
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BritCvS(7a)

Excellent advice and thank you Yardvaark.

I hadn't thought about the pergola shape. Good advice! I suppose we can use the umbrella that can accompany the table.

The general notes I agree with completely. I was worried about that looping pinch. Consider that advice taken. I also agreed with the awkward space for planting, and the flow comment.

I don't have a scale plan yet. But I do have the yard dimensions from our plat, where I can see that the total North-South space available is around 30 feet from the near south side of the patio (by your green p) to the far North fence (where your yellow much word is) . I do have the table dimensions:
Table dimensions: 86" L x 42" D x 29" H
Chair dimensions: 25.5" L x 22" D x 33" H
The table image is uploaded.
I'll google room for table dimensions and see what comes up as a general rule of thumb.

I'm also wondering where to put the grill. The kitchen is in the middle rear of the house.

The plat is linked to below

Here is a link that might be useful: Plat

    Bookmark   October 17, 2013 at 9:59PM
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yardvaark

"I'm also wondering where to put the grill. The kitchen is in the middle rear of the house." Since grills are generally most conveniently located somewhere between the door to the kitchen access and the outdoor dining area, it's likely that the grill would go in the vicinity of where I show the chartreuse-colored double-headed arrow, where there is some blank wall space and depending on what the window situation is. This is a good reason why to especially have no pinching in that area.

    Bookmark   October 18, 2013 at 3:15PM
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