These days, more people are staying home & staying safe during quarantine. Even if you are working from home and/or homeschooling your children, there is still a lot of time to fill in a day. A lot of us are spending much more time working outdoors: gardening, landscaping, clearing debris and planning for the upcoming summer. When I look around my neighborhood, I see more people tending their lawns than ever before. It’s therapeutic, relaxing, and a healthy way to get fresh air and exercise.

When it comes to landscaping changes, where should you start? Here are the big landscaping trends for 2020:

1. Ornate, geometric designs
Homeowners are eager to take the latest interior design patterns and bring them outside. More folks are incorporating waves, lattice, and textured materials into the layout of their yards. Even porcelain tiles, traditionally used in bathrooms, are popping up outside the home, appearing in walkways, patios, and retaining walls. Natural stones have also remained very popular.

2. Contemporary and transitional landscaping design is hot
Homeowners are also bringing their styles to their yards. The sleek, simple, and polished aesthetic is being used in outdoor kitchens, modern fire and water features, and eye-catching sculpture. Grays are popular, as well as sleek lines.

Folks are choosing native plants that can survive in different climates and are opting for heat lamps, which will let them enjoy their gardens into the fall and sometimes even winter.

3. Blue is everywhere
Shades of blue were declared the top colors of the year by paint companies from Sherwin-Williams to Pantone. But cobalt and dark navy hues aren’t just for covering interior walls. More homeowners are adding touches of the calming color in their outdoor oases. It’s a very natural color that’s relaxing. In the outdoor spaces in general, there’s a desire for the natural tones and textures. Blue is obviously a key component in nature.

This could be with a blue sculpture that draws the eye, a statement water feature, or the shades of the plants that they choose. Choose plants like blue fortune, delphinium, hydrangea, globe thistle, or grape hyacinth.

4. Do it your way
This is the year to embrace your own style, and your own quirks. If you want to install rows of organic tomatoes and Italian eggplants in raised beds, go for it! If you’re into bright bird feeders, go nuts. If you’re looking for a relaxing escape from the rest of the world with a vine-covered pergola and a stone patio with a hot tub out back or an outdoor kitchen complete with a pizza oven, this is your time.

Personalize your yards, whatever the size. Try a container or vertical gardens if you have a smaller outdoor space. More and more homeowners are asking designers for very specific landscape elements that fit their family’s personal tastes and interests. Edible gardens and children’s gardens are very popular, and reflective of the farm-to-table movement.

5. Remote-controlled irrigation
Smart tech is big inside the home—so why shouldn’t it be used outside, too?

Installing high-tech irrigation systems will save time from having to manually water lawns. The systems can be programmed to irrigate yards and save water in the process. The best part? You can control them online or through a smartphone app.

So, get out there and make your yard a personal space where you can relax and commune with nature in your own way, with elements that mean something to you!