Making the most of smaller outdoor spaces

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Florida is famous for it’s sunshine and warm weather, even in the winter months. We Central Floridians love a good porch, balcony or backyard, and many homeowners are opting for condo living or a more urban lifestyle close to work and play. So how do you make the most out of your small but mighty outdoor space? Whether it’s a bungalow home in Baldwin Park, a town home in Winter Park or a condo in Altamonte Springs, big style can come in small packages if done right.

A great place to start when maximizing your outdoor area is fixing your fixtures. A coach light or two can do a lot for your front door décor. Pick one with a motion sensor for an added security benefit, and sleep easy. If you don’t want a coach light, try a hanging pendant light in your covered entryway. Whether you own a condo or a detached home, updating the hardware on your front door can add the fresh look and feel you crave. If you do own a townhome or a single-family home with a backyard space, updating the hardware there works too. While you’re at it add some solar powered path lights to brighten your way.



As with all things, color adds character and it’s easy to do. Paint a bucket or box planter bright blue or red and add some Florida friendly flowers. Chrysanthemums, bougainvillea and pansies are well suited for the sun and hardy enough for the cooler fall temperatures too. Make a vertical garden for your balcony by hanging flowerpots on some trellis, or try a tiered planter or topiary. It’s easier than it looks and you can find step-by-step instructions online or by asking around in your local nursery. Another fabulous out-of-the-box idea for color lovers is painting a wooden stepladder or leaning shelf and placing your potted plants and eye-catching items there. By designing up and not out you save more space.

Another great backyard idea for those with limited square footage, is laying down landscape pebbles and placing coordinating pathway pavers or stepping-stones over it. Line your path with those eco-friendly battery-powered solar lights and add some minimalistic grasses for a cool modern look. A water feature is another chic way to spruce up your condo or home, and can be hung on a wall or placed right in the yard for soothing sound and sight.

The open-air options are limitless even for those living an urban or condo lifestyle. By budgeting and pre-planning your design choices you can create an outdoor oasis, even in the heart of the city.

Christina Rordam is a local Realtor. Contact her at 407-928-8294 or