Many retirees and empty nesters are moving into dense urban areas with the desire to maintain gardens and maximize their outdoor living spaces. While most urban yards are small, outdoor designer Joe Raboine told theVancouver Sun that a lot can be accomplished in a tiny space.

A lot of urban yards are 300 or 400 square feet,” Raboine says. “It’s just thinking about how that space is being used. On a suburban lot, you might have separate areas for cooking and dining and a fireplace or sitting and conversation area, and in these urban environments you can accomplish all these things with clever design.”

Green walls and vertical gardens are two trends that have emerged in the design element of outdoor spaces. Rabione adds:

“There’s lots of opportunities to integrate raised beds and planters and also make them functional seating wise. So you could have on adjacent to a fire pit, for example, and then vertically. A lot of the time you’re able to go up six to eight feet, creating these vertical gardens that are essentially comprised of three to five horizontal troughs that could be any size or depth.”

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