5 Ways to Optimize Outdoor Living Spaces for Winter

Principal and CEO Patrick Weiss of Ground One Landscape Design + Build + Maintain shares his tips and tricks for optimizing outdoor spaces in even the coldest of seasons

Photos by Patrick Weiss

Winter has quickly crashed over us with numerous feet of snow. As we trudge into the coldest months of the year, we normally presume that our outdoor living spaces must go unused—but what if those spaces could serve a purpose amid the cold and snow? Expanding the fashion and functionality of patios, porches, and more allows for year-round enjoyment of outdoor spaces and brings the warmth of the indoors back outside. Here, Patrick Weiss, principal and CEO of Ground One Landscape, shares the best ways to utilize outdoor spaces during the winter season.

Fire Pits and Fireplaces

For regular party hosts, outdoor fire pits and fireplaces are perfect gathering spaces for groups of any size. Even when viewed from inside the home, they emit feelings of comfort. There are both permanent and portable options depending on design preferences and accessibility.

Landscape Lighting

When natural light is lacking, ambient lighting around the home’s exterior helps warm the space. This type of lighting creates fantastic ambiance and brings life to any landscape in the darkness of winter.

Winter and Holiday Lighting

White lights, while normally used outdoors during the holidays, are becoming popular year-round to dress up trees and overhead pergolas. There are multiple styles to choose from—from traditional string bulbs to holiday-style lights. This is a simple way to create a cozy atmosphere.

Winter Containers and Plants


Incorporating plants such as cabbages and kales, camellias, and other winter-equipped greenery adds color and life to landscapes during the winter season. Evergreens are another great option because they stay green year-round.

Infrared Overhead Heaters

Outdoor heaters are becoming more popular in outdoor spaces, particularly in pergolas. These heaters are electric-powered and compact enough to easily hang amid patio furniture and accessories.

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