Landscape Architecture Trends with Cedar Springs Landscape Group

Cedar Springs Landscape Group is an award-winning landscape design firm based in southern Ontario. For a quarter century, the Cedar Springs team has designed nature-inspired outdoor living spaces that turn backyards into luxurious home resorts featuring pools, cabanas, fire features, and outdoor heaters.


We talked to President/Owner Adrian Bartels to see what inspires his company’s incredible outdoor designs. Read on to learn about the design trends he has noticed in outdoor living, and to find out how he creates spaces that adapt to the changing seasons in Canada.

What trends have you noticed in outdoor room design?
Outdoor rooms have been growing in popularity over the past 10 years. As they become more popular, people are increasingly trying to make them extensions of their home. All the comforts and amenities that they currently enjoy inside, they also like to have outside. This includes comfortable furniture, televisions, a bar, kitchen, fireplace, etc.

What inspires you when creating a custom space for your clients?
Each client’s character and wish list ultimately becomes our inspiration. If they love to entertain, we can find ways to bring Vegas to their backyard; if they want a quiet, relaxing space, we can keep the design style low key. Once we establish a style, we then also try to marry the space back to the architecture of the home so it really feels like an extension rather than just an addition.


How do your customers’ outdoor lifestyles influence your designs?
Not everyone desires to spend time outdoors. Some people like to step out the back door and not venture much further while others love to be actually in their yard. This lifestyle often influences whether an outdoor living space gets attached right to the house or whether it gets nestled somewhere in the garden.

How do you design your spaces to accommodate seasonal transitions?
As people spend more and more time and money in their yards, there is an increasing desire to extend the season both later into the evenings as well as earlier in the spring and later into the fall.  This is accomplished first off by adding physical warmth to the space so that it’s comfortable to be outside, either with a fireplace, fire pit, fire bowl, outdoor torches, infrared heaters, etc. Lighting is also important to extending the season as well as the evening. Often a backyard looks the most impressive when it’s dark outside and the lighting is on. Mosquito screens are becoming increasingly popular now as well, whether it’s a remote built-in retractable screen or simply a mesh curtain system.

How do you choose outdoor heating for the spaces you design?
Fireplaces and fire pits are the best option for heating since they also provide a focal point to the outdoor space.  Flush mount infrared heaters are a great innovation as well as they look quite sleek and can be placed in key positions to heat specific “cold spots” that the fireplace may not be able to reach.