Landscaping Your Backyard
The front yard is for impressing your neighbors, but landscaping your backyard is all about you. Even when you’re working with a small backyard area, you can create a space that acts as a private retreat for you to relax with friends and family. Landscape design pictures and inspiration often seem to involve huge areas, but working with a small backyard requires a focus on functional and simple landscapes with maximum effect.
Small Backyard Landscape Ideas
The perfect backyard for you is unique depending on the total area available, any slopes or uneven ground, the availability of shade and sun, and, of course, your budget. Landscaping ideas for back of house areas can seem overwhelming, but they can be broken down into a few basic concepts and considerations.
Your Goals vs. Your Backyard Environment
Do you want a private retreat from the stress of the day, a barbecue area, a lush natural area, or a place for children to play? Do you want to spend time pruning and weeding your backyard, or do you want it to take care of itself?
Take these goals and compare them to your budget and what the climate will allow. If you get plenty of sun and little rainfall, a rock garden with drought-resistant plants won’t require irrigation or special care. If you hate mowing, low maintenance ground covers combined with paving stones and decking can give you a functional space that requires very little attention.
If you want to make your small backyard look huge, one of the top small backyard landscape ideas is to use vertical space. Tiered planters, raised seating areas, and placing taller plants towards the edges of the yard are a few ways to do this.
Fixtures and Focus Points
Another consideration when brainstorming landscaping ideas for backyard areas is what you want to “feature” in the area. If you have a green thumb, that could be your plants. If you like to host gatherings or dine outdoors, you might be most concerned with comfortable seating and an area for the grill or a fire pit.
Water features like fountains or a pool can be gorgeous additions to any space but can be difficult to install properly on your own. Professionals like Normark Landscapes will know how to install the best feature for your unique backyard space while conserving water.
Backyard Landscaping Ideas on a Budget
Simple landscape ideas are key when trying to figure out backyard landscaping ideas on a budget. Limiting the plants to hardy native species will help you avoid the extra costs of watering during dry months and will require less maintenance. Leave the perfect grassy lawn to the guy next door–grass can require a lot of water and the perfect balance of sun and shade to thrive.
Instead of grass, consider pavers, bricks, decking, sand, or crushed stone. This is often called “hardscaping” and is a great way to save money in the long run. Avoid mulch that will need replacing year after year. Adding edging to flower beds is easy to do yourself and creates a clean look. Hardscaping materials can be found for free or at a low cost–try calling local haulers or keeping an eye on online classifieds for materials like brick, broken concrete, and stone.