9 Experts Talk Outdoor Living Trends 2022 And Beyond


Time spent at home has compelled us to take a closer look at our landscapes, then turn to the pros for ways to make them more functional, beautiful and restorative. Here, nine design experts break down outdoor living trends for 2022—yes, pools and water features are a hot request coast to coast—and the innovative features making these spaces more comfortable, livable and luxurious than ever. 

Stucco residence with infinity swimming pool and large tree

This ridgetop residence overlooking downtown Nashville was created in concert with Dryden Architecture & Design, Rachel Halvorson Designs and general contractor Matt Daniel. Daigh Rick Landscape Architects specified the sleek infinity pool by Watermark Pool & Spa.

Water is the feature

Anne Daigh, Daigh Rick Landscape Architects

The time we’ve all spent at home has made swimming pools more popular than ever. Unlike in the past, pools are more likely to add to the resale value of a home, too. For us, no pool is too small; recently we have designed small dipping pools, lap pools for exercise, pools with infinity edges and grander pools for large family properties.


Dark gray building with privacy screen and outdoor shower

Cloaked in a textural combination of lush plantings, this outdoor shower by Renée Byers Landscape Architect provides an elegant and private spot for a soak.

Nothing beats a good rinse

Renée Byers, Renée Byers Landscape Architect

Outdoor showers are enormously popular. Waterside homes have long had these features; but now even suburban clients are asking for this amenity—which they use all season long. They come in handy after workouts, children’s athletic activities or even bathing a family pet.


Autumnal garden with Japanese maple, clean-lined shade structure and orange seating

Amid a colorful Pacific Northwest landscape, this modern pergola design by Land Morphology shelters a classic Richard Schultz Topiary bench and lounge furniture around a Solus fire feature.

Extend the season

Richard Hartlage, Land Morphology

Our clients are asking for more rain-protecting arbors. In the Northwest, we have a summer-dry climate, and by using rain protection and heaters, we can extend the use of these structures by a month or more on either end of the outdoor season. 


Spanish-inspired residence with red clay roof, gravel path and dry-climate plants

The pros at Arterra Landscape Architects prove that a simply planted entry terrace can be firewise as well as elegant. Pictured are Atelier Vierkant pots and stools among limestone paving.

Conserve in style

Gretchen Whittier, Arterra Landscape Architects

As we head into another year of drought, our clients are definitely paying attention. More often they’re shying away from lawns—which are the biggest culprits of water use per household. In place of these, our clients are welcoming bocce and pickle ball courts, sitting areas and dry gardens. And as the climate warms and rainy seasons become less predictable, zones south of the Bay Area are providing insight with plant palettes such as succulents and cacti. The results are stunning!


Rustic pergola with climbing vines, flowers and statue

This poolside pergola, constructed with reclaimed materials by Craig Bergmann Landscape Design, Inc., features elegant pots of hydrangea, Greco-Roman-inspired statuary and furnishings from Brown Jordan’s Venetian Collection. 

What’s old is new again

Craig Bergmann, Craig Bergmann Landscape Design, Inc.

Supply chain issues have created shortages of quality materials. And with the glut of demand for furniture and lumber, reclaimed and vintage materials are being used regularly. 


Modern white stucco house with outdoor lounge area and wall-mounted TV

A contemporary Malibu beach house designed by Landry Design Group features a sheltered courtyard packed with creature comforts—perfect for lounging, imbibing or taking a business call.

WFH escapes

William Mungall, Landry Design Group

Outdoor workspaces are the top request. We got out of the office, and now it’s time to get out of the home office! Having a comfortable, convenient—and not overly sunny—spot to mark up drawings or take a Zoom call on your laptop is a new necessity.



Outdoor space with pool, filter feature and cypress trees

This hardscaping-heavy outdoor space by Duke Design Group features a plant palette with diverse textures, colors and heights—complemented by water and fire components for additional interest.

Less pruning, more appreciating

Gavin Duke, Duke Design Group

Low-maintenance plantings are the most-requested “ask.” We strive to develop a year-round bulletproof palette of plants that offers seasonal interest with aesthetically pleasing textures, blooms and a low level of required care. In the coming years we will see more sustainable meadows for pollinators and wildlife.


Cottage with raised beds of herbs and vegetables

This kitchen container garden with vegetables and herbs by Hoerr Schaudt | Landscape Architects allows for hands-on interaction between the homeowner and their garden. Landscape architect Douglas Hoerr says the varied heights make the space fun and less formal.

Nature at your fingertips

Douglas Hoerr, Hoerr Schaudt | Landscape Architects

In this post-pandemic world, people crave bespoke and interactive outdoor spaces. Many of us have a newfound appreciation for spending time in our yards and interacting with our landscapes: growing produce, incorporating pollinator gardens or adding bird and owl boxes to welcome wildlife.


Colorful, inviting outdoor seating group in front of a stone fireplace and beside a large table topped with potted plants

Natural shade is offered by surrounding plant life in this furnished sanctuary by Janice Parker Landscape Architects—meant to be a refuge for reading or listening to music.

A sunnier outlook 

Janice Parker, Janice Parker Landscape Architects

The future I see is one of landscape design diversity: a true reflection of our cultural values. There will be more design synthesis—an overlapping of formal and informal elements and “green” approaches to planning and maintenance. The new landscapes will defy any single definition. There will be more color, exuberance and outdoor cooking and living spaces with the inclusion of organic vegetable, flower and soft fruit gardens.