The Benefits of Exposure to Nature
When surfing social media, the posts that get most attention are beautiful landscaping photos. If catching a quick glimpse of nature online seems to refresh the spirit, imagine what time spent outdoors in a natural setting does.
The University of Washington wrote a piece on this very subject not too long ago. And after two years of study, while they remain baffled as to “how” nature heals more than the soul, they do know that exposure to a beautiful landscape is beneficial to one’s overall well being.
The study also indicated that some doctors in their areas were already suggesting “doses of nature to their adult patients to treat conditions ranging from heart disease to depression.”
The researchers also discovered that spending time in nature can be a challenge, depending on one’s neighborhood, etc. But providing specific spots to “safely enjoy nature” is worth the effort both at home and in the local community.
We thought we’d share today some examples of Long Island homeowners who have employed Deck and Patio to create mini-natural havens in their own yards.
Deck and Patio carefully selected the boulders and stones, along with bright plantings to create this beautiful vista. And as many would agree, it would not have been an ideal outdoor refuge without some sort of water feature. A stream with waterfalls flowing under a charming wooden bridge, combined with the imported boulders and rocks we chose, created a natural walking trail like one would find in the mountains.
There’s no need to sacrifice a patio with spaces for entertaining for a natural vista that will nourish your soul. You can have both. Here we built multi-level patios and carefully spaced how each area was to be used.
We set up one area for relaxing and taking in a section of the yard’s multi-faceted water feature. Another spot off to the side — in front of a thicket of trees — was designed as a private patio. Sections for sunning and being near their pool were also planned out.
This project is a great example of building a nature lover’s escape on a property that did not have a lot of slope. It is actually three bodies of water: twin ponds and a swimming pool.
The lower pond was intended to be the fish pond, with the upper pond for aquatic plants. However, Mother Nature is always boss. For not long after this award-winning* project was complete, the pond fish began jumping over the waterfall stone that separated the ponds to swim upstream into the upper pond.
(*This project won an international silver medal for water features from the Association of Pool and Spa Professionals (APSP).
Because these clients had a lovely wooded yard, Deck and Patio had a beautiful backdrop to work our magic. We weaved stone steps, streams, and waterfalls in an around the property’s existing bridge and nature walks — all just below a park-style bench. We also lavished it all with robust plantings and green ground cover. To just about any eye, the completed nature walk appears as if Mother Nature put it all together herself.
Taking a walk in this backyard is as much meditation as exercise. In homage to Japanese Garden styles, Deck and Patio fitted large natural stones with smooth walking surfaces across a newly completed backyard pond. When doing the landscaping, we anchored each side of the pond with beautiful deep colors midst the lush green ground cover.
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Since we can’t travel daily to natural habitats, how can we pause daily to rest our minds? The answer may be found right in our own backyard.
Did you know that since Deck and Patio began designing/building ponds and pondscapes, we have created over 300 such peaceful water features here on Long Island alone? Local nature lovers have found that their backyards don’t have to be just a patch of green with some flower beds. They can be glorious escapes that act as the perfect elixir.