We started out with nothing but a hole in the yard, and now we have a complete backyard ecosystem nestled away in the Running Man neighborhood of Yorktown. It's incredible what is tucked away back here, and we want to walk you through the whole space.
It all begins with a rain barrel, where water falls into an Aquascape skimmer box then enters a rain garden filled with perennials that will soon become a spot of beauty when the plants begin to bloom. Any excess water overflows into a dry well and eventually drains out to the street in case of excess water. And that's just the beginning...
A few years ago, we had the pleasure of installing a patio in this backyard in the Running Man neighborhood of Yorktown, and we were thrilled to come back to add some beauty and excitement to their outdoor space. Being environmentally conscious is important to these homeowners, and they wanted our new installation to line up with their values that were already reflected in their backyard setup.
So how did we make sure their new water feature and pond was environmentally friendly? Keep reading to find out!
Pond has a few unique features: downspout that will constantly replenish the pond. Excess water will flow into a rain garden to re-use all of our natural resources.
As much as we love how our projects look, one often-overlooked component is that sound that a water feature can create in a backyard. Just close your eyes and listen to the sound of flowing water, then imagine what it would be like to hear that every time you open your back door. It's one big component of our desire to allow people to live life outdoors!
For this Williamsburg home, we were working to create two separate spaces for enjoyment. There was already a fire pit with a seating wall, but the flow of the yard wasn't quite right, and we had to add a water feature as well. Here's how we made the transformation.
We covered some of these details in Part 1, but this is a project that we have been involved with for much longer than we anticipated! Long story short, when the wetland buffer behind the Cypress Creek neighborhood in Smithfield got moved, the possibilities opened up for these clients, and we all got right to planning what we would add to a beautiful backyard pool.
One big change we started with was the actual pave color. Instead of having to apply new stain themselves, we suggested these homeowners opt for a new, chocolate border around the pool to make the space pop. At the same time, though, we needed to make sure Phase 1 and 2 were cohesive. Nobody wants to look at a backyard and see exactly where one project ended and another one began! Plus, there was one more key element to add...
We've finished this pool update in Hampton, and added on a lot of character in the meantime! This house's smaller backyard already had a pool installed, but started showing some major wear and tear. With concrete and drainage issues, plus the homeowner's desire to add a little pizzazz, we were called in to provide some upgrades and fix what was broken...and add a little fun on top of that with a mini putting green!
So what were the major changes?
Believe it or not, the apron is the most critical part of a driveway. It absorbs the shock from cars that drive in and out, stop and wait, and bump off the curb. Because of this, it also needs to be the sturdiest part of the structure, so we pay extra attention to making it perfect and long-lasting. We talked about this and more in Part 1, so jump over and watch it if you haven't already!
After solving the driveway issues, we knew we need to add a little something more...
What's going on at the Virginia Zoo in Norfolk? Well, there's always a lot happening...and this time, we have something to do with it! This current space we are working on is the old entrance to the Sea Lion exhibit, which no longer exists. Clearly, the area is overgrown and needs some work, which is where we're stepping in!
Working at the Virginia Zoo is different than in a traditional backyard. We set out to employ a technique called bio mimicry...
We wanted to create a backyard paradise at this home in Yorktown, but with 1200 square feet of pavers, we had a lot to do - and a lot to work with! The first step was to add some additional privacy with a fence and landscaping that includes green giant arbor trees to create a little separation from the neighbors.
The main event is the River Pools swimming pool, where we added some curves, colors, and textures to make the space pop. Since kids will be visiting this backyard a lot, we added a water wall both for beauty and to create a 'natural' diving board - we can promise it will be used over and over again! On the side for the adults is a hot tub surrounded by a stone wall, so the grown ups can relax while the kids play.
And believe it or not, this is only phase 1...
This driveway was originally asphalt layered with gravel and it just wasn't working for these homeowners. We transformed the non-workable space into a 5500 square foot paver-style driveway complete with some extra flair.
Because we built this in Newport News, there were a few extra steps: permits, approvals, a reinforced apron, and more. We also dealt with some surprising angles to make this as friendly to driving in and out as possible and create a family-friendly space for the homeowners and their grandkids.
We're thrilled to walk you through this three-phase project in Yorktown, Virginia. We've finished the first phase and have big plans for what's coming!
Phase 1 included a pool, waterfall, and some landscaping so while the pavilion is being constructed, the homeowners can still enjoy the summer in peace. We finished the water feature, created a walkway, and even installed an easy-access trash pad for practical use. The trees and shade panels (complete with color-changing lights!) provide privacy and a little bit of show-off flair.
The next phase includes a pergola with a gate to create an ambience every time someone enters the space. Right now there is a place for lounge chairs, with an outdoor deck coming to allow the homeowners to enjoy the view.
The centerpiece is, of course,
Phase 1 is complete for this three-part project in Yorktown, Virginia. To kick things off we built a four-season room and a deck, started in on the landscaping, and completed a walkway leading out to the front yard. The most exciting part, of course, is the 38-foot waterfall that will eventually have 20,000 gallons of water rushing over the space.
We started with a completely flat yard, which ended up being a challenge because our waterfall required almost 48 inches of elevation! Outcropping rocks will hold the soil in, and the slopes will be filled with plants like maple and cherry trees that have been repurposed into the space from other parts of the yard.
We installed 3-inch plumbing in the Aqua-Blocs to allow such a massive amount of water to flow through and, in places, bubble up like an actual brook. Big rocks and boulders will bring the whole water feature together. We love that in this backyard, even if the pool is shut down, the homeowners will still be able to enjoy all four seasons with the rushing sound of water controlled by an adjustable pump.
In Phase 2 we're adding a walkway to a pavilion with a fire pit carved into the side of the water feature, an outdoor kitchen, and a lot more landscaping, so stay tuned for some more incredible updates!
The backyard started out as just grass and ended with 2,500 square feet of a Techo-Bloc constructed patio complete with a massive sunken fire pit, two water features, a pergola, some screening walls, and a total of 91 lights. One of our favorite elements is the Boy with His Dog, a small fountain that had been dormant in their garage for over 15 years!
As large as this space was, we didn't want it to feel too big and grandiose. Instead, we want it to feel like a comfortable space for their family to be at home outdoors, especially when their grandkids get the opportunity to play in the fountain.
This project, built at a home nestled in the heart of Williamsburg, Virginia, is one of our favorites and we can't wait to see how they live life outdoors in such a gorgeous space.
This is a beautiful home right at the edge of the water in Hampton, so close to Poquoson you can see it from the shore. The homeowners needed to fix some issues with their original concrete pool and liner, but in the meantime they decided to upgrade some of the more unsightly elements. It takes a lot of sweat equity to maintain the curves of the original design, and we knew our team was up to the task.
Rather than keep the original concrete material, we installed pavers over top to add style to this beautiful outdoor living element. This video walk-through gives a quick but thorough overview of how we upgraded a backyard pool to make it even better than it was before. These homeowners are sure to love their party-and-fun space for years to come, now with a brand new look and feel!
Our first step when creating a custom hardscape is often tearing the yard apart so we can put it back together! Here's a little 'before' sneak peek of a BIG and (one day) beautiful project in the Breezy Point neighborhood of Yorktown, Virginia, complete with a pool and a whole lot more coming!
Right now we're working to install pavers around the pool and a walkway to the front.
Who's excited to see the after?!
1220 square feet
Style: Techo Bloc Blu60 / Techo Bloc Antika
Color: Shale Grey and Onyx Black
It wasn’t that long ago COVID happened. It was a bit rough. Travel was almost completely nixed. Consequently 2020 was coined The Year of the Home. Boy was it! As we entered 2021, the trend continued. We were asked many times to use the vacation budget to create a place where experiences, conversations, and life could happen steps from the living room. We happily accepted the challenge. We are honored to change the landscape around Hampton Roads, consequently changing the way our clients live outdoors.
Watch the video below to see some of our favorites, then click here for a brief review of our top 10 projects and take the opportunity to vote for YOUR favorite!
It's 2022! After a crazy couple years, life around the home has changed a little. We've seen a shift to stay-cations and less travel. Smaller groups and entertaining at home became more frequent. The shift started as a temporary measure, we've seen it become more a way of life.
The Aquascape Lifestyles Inspiration Guide can help imagine how that home entertainment can happen. Pictures of spaces with water features, koi ponds, fountains, and garden ponds from the simple to the more complex. While looking through the pictures, note how the water features, patios, and homes flow and connect to create an outdoor space. Many feel effortless, the design or any of these spaces is to fit the end user.
If you entertain frequently but with only one or two other couples/friends, a large drawn out space isn't needed. Maybe something with multiple small seating areas creating different vantages and vistas of the yard. If you entertain infrequent but with large groups, creating an intimate feel for the the morning coffee or evening wine location is important while keeping the space open and accessible from the home.
Hopefully you can find some inspiration here, and have a fantastic New Year!
If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then how much is a video worth? Usually our project recaps include an explanation of our process and the installation details, but for this koi pond and patio install, we thought that we would let the finished project do all the talking. It's no secret that water feature are our favorite element to build in Hampton Roads and beyond, so this one - complete with a fire pit and patio - was the perfect project for us.
If you're interested in the details, here they are: We installed a 14x10 Tranquility Elite koi pond. Complete with underwater lights, water auto fill valve, and an auto doser. We also carved stone steps into the landscape along with a 38’ retention wall and two patios.
Our goal, as always, was for this family to enjoy their outdoor space as a second home right outside their home. Let us know if this is something you would want in your backyard!
Back in spring of 2021, we started to build a large (over 32 feet long!) eco-system pond in a big backyard located in Suffolk, Virginia. We used a 2500 and a 6000 Aquascapes Signature Series biofalls for our pond filtration. Instead of the standard Aquascape 1000 skimmer we built an intake bay to allow for lower maintenance. We also incorporated two urns and plenty of color changing lights.
Now that the fall has come we finished the pond, and it's a beauty for sure! Video 1 will show more of our process, while the second video is a peaceful, beautiful look at this incredible water feature.
Let us know if YOU would want a pond that big if this was your backyard!
Part 1: The Initial Build
Part 2: The Finished Pond
Years ago we added outdoor landscaping and a fountain to this beautiful backyard in Yorktown. This year, we came back to add an outdoor kitchen complete with under-counter storage, side-burners, and a built-in Napoleon Prestige grill. We also included WiFi enabled low-voltage lighting to make sure you can get around it during the evening.
If it wasn't already a welcoming space, this small kitchen addition is going to make the ambiance even better. It's a usable space even in inclement weather, and we can't think of a more perfect way to welcome fall.
What would you want in an outdoor kitchen? Comment and let us know!
We started with a mess and ended with a pool! Originally, we installed everything from a patio to a hot tub in this Toano backyard, but it was time for a pretty big upgrade. Of course, we had to tie the new pool in with the existing hardscape, and the result is an absolutely incredible outdoor space.
Now, the yard features:
It's never a bad day when you have a beachside view! This backyard in Croatan Beach needed a makeover, and we were here to help. We partnered with Virginia Beach Patios to fix a minor disaster that destroyed the original landscaping. After the rebuild, we added a gorgeous water feature to take it to the next level.
We also added hydrangeas, flame inserts to the aquascape, and a new, safe way to collect water during a rainstorm.
Now this backyard in Virginia Beach, so close to the Atlantic Ocean, has paradise written all over it. Watch the video to hear about what happened and how we worked together to fix it!
I was honored to be the featured guest on a recent episode of the Hampton Roads Show. We talked about the advantages of having a water feature, from quiet moments in the garden to the practical elements of owning one, including what upkeep looks like for the average homeowner.
I personally love having an ecosystem pond (no surprise there!), so sharing my passion for this type of backyard installation was a joy. The best part was watching the host, Chris Reckling,, come to a new understand about all the advantages of water features.
View the video below to hear our chat, and let me know if I was a natural on camera...or not! 😆
We originally added a pool, carport, and landscaping to this home in Yorktown, Virginia. A few years later we added a water feature...and now they want even more! This beautiful backyard features summertime hydrangeas, an outdoor kitchen, and crepe myrtles, among other things.
For their new water feature we added a bubbling sphere, but after they got a taste of it they knew they wanted to add on. We're taking out hydrangeas, repositioning the sphere, adding a waterfall, and upgrading the overall view. Tons of AquaBlox were used along with the new Aquascape SLD 5000-9000 for the fountain and a Aquascape AquaSurge 5000 for the waterfall.
This backyard is going to be quite the showpiece, right in the heart of Yorktown. Watch this video to see the transformation! Do you think they're done, or will we come back for more in a few years?!
Who knew what 2020 would bring?! It ended up being The Year of Home. I mused that since no one would be traveling to Paris or Venice this year, maybe people would put their vacation budget into their home, landscape, and outdoor spaces. While I may have meant that as a joke, it wasn't far from the truth, as few of our clients have told us.
Despite the challenges of finding supplies, manufacturers being shut down, wood prices skyrocketing, and material shortages, we had a lot of fun this year. We live to create. We enjoy the end result. We love seeing our clients live in their new space. We take pride knowing we had something to do with the memories they'll create enjoying the great outdoors.
Here are the Easton Outdoors top 10 projects for 2020!
If you are thinking about a new pond or have just had your new pond installed- Welcome!
It is an exciting journey. Water gardening is rewarding, fish are peaceful, and the sound of water is relaxing.
Check out this guide for your new pond. Many of the questions you may have are answered here. If you have any further questions, please give us a call or email.
About Easton Outdoors
We started out as the neighborhood lawn boys – a group of high school friends trying to make some pocket change. It soon became more. We realized how much we enjoyed landscaping. Over the years, we've transformed hundreds of properties, beautified countless landscapes, and made many homeowners proud. This has become our passion!