Backyard Landscaping Ideas

The best backyard is one where you can enjoy it how you see fit.  Home and garden television shows and fine home magazines are great sources of inspiration and ideas, too.  However, without the right plan or design in mind, you can spend too much time or money on concepts that may not let you enjoy your space as you wish.  You’ve come here looking for backyard landscaping ideas and so, let’s get started.

The backyard is one of those places where we at Patio Covers Place feel right at home.  In fact, that’s what our entire site is about – outdoor living products and patio accessories for modern living.  While we’ve talked about front yard landscaping ideas around here, too, it certainly isn’t our first love, so to speak.  Over the past decade or so, homeowners increasingly request or are looking for backyard landscaping designs that create functional outdoor rooms.  That is to say, the backyard expands upon the livable square footage of one’s home.

Backyard landscaping is more than just the living or organic nature of a yard, it is also the hardscape and structural features as well.  You might expect that patio covers make up a big part of that design.  You’d be right!  In fact, many find the pergola designs that offer both shade and the framework for other living materials is a great structure to include.  This is why we spend so much time talking about them and ways of utilizing them in your space.

However, there are more to the hardscape elements than just these patio structures.  Landscaping ideas must address the overall flow in your space.  It needs to address proportion, perception and dimension as well.  In another article, we discussed landscaping ideas for small yards as there are specific concerns and challenges with smaller spaces.  In it, there were discussions about how the height of your landscape features should be varied.  This helps to create that dimension that is so important in landscape design.

If you’re just starting to plant now, it may take several seasons to get some idea as to what the ‘finished product’ will look like.  You can cheat time a bit by purchasing larger specimens of trees, shrubs or plants, but much of your landscape will fill in over the course of years.  This is why it is important to plan and design properly.  It is easy to have your landscape overtake your space over the course of several years.

Beside the fact that you don’t want to have it overgrown, you want to keep maintenance of your backyard to a level that you can tolerate.  Unless you have a landscaper or gardener that will be managing your yard, making sure that it is not a chore is crucial.  The last thing you want is for your yard to become a burden or a place that you resent.

Backyard Landscaping Pictures

It’s hard to convey a concept with words, not to mention landscape designs.  So, the following are some design concepts from which you can get some inspiration.

Country Garden

This term is more of a catch-all.  It reflects the look of a more natural space, with some garden art or focal points thrown in.  It has a more

Here is a great example of a country garden with arbor.

relaxed and ‘flowy’ look about it.  We’ve included this one to represent the ‘flower garden’ category in this discussion.  You can utilize both perennial and seasonal flowers.  Wildflowers are also a great addition and can be a part of most any of the designs mentioned here.

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Xeriscaped Yard

This is certainly one of our favorite types of design.  The reason is because of how it is a more sustainable design for our part of the southwestern U.S.  You can achieve this type of landscape in your local climate as well, using native plant species that

While a bit larger than a typical yard, this is a good example of a xeriscaped yard, with shade sails and metal and rock retaining wall.

are adapted to your environment.  If you live in the desert, using synthetic grass is a much better way to get the look you want than having to water a lawn in a climate where it is not natural for it to grow.  Sure, we’ve got some of the greatest golf courses around, but they do require vast amounts of water resources and maintenance – the very aspects that xeriscaping avoids.    photo credit

Japanese Garden

In this style of landscape, minimalist is key.  The whole Zen principle of simplicity and the use of natural elements together is the focus.  Here, you might find water features, stone figures, hardscape elements and elegant flower specimens.  The pergola is also a great complement to this theme.  Asian-inspired landscapes are and have been very popular in the West for many years.

This is a wonderful example of the use of water, hardscape elements and selective planting to achieve a Japanese-style landscape.

It is their simple, clean lines and serene appearance that appeals to many homeowners.  If you opt for this type of design style, consider accessorizing your home’s or patio’s gutters with rain chains.  These are often copper chains, bowls, cups or figurines that hang from your gutter and allow water to be redirected in a way that is both art and function.  You can even utilize this set up that leads into a stream or river in your landscape layout.

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Modern or Contemporary

With a more contemporary or modern look, there is part minimal and part functional aspects.  The use of rock, cement and metal are very popular components of this design.  There are many modern and sustainable designs that can be incorporated with this approach.

Here is a contemporary design using stone that has an Asian feel to it.

The use of a consistent pattern or color is also part of a more modern look.  So, a checkerboard design made of concrete or bluestone pavers with grass or moss between them is a popular look.  Likewise, geometric shapes that utilize natural stone materials and water elements or living plants is also a good style to mimic.  Modern landscapes will continue to utilize sustainable designs as more and more people bring their ‘green’ living approaches to their backyards.  The re-use or recycling of materials to create an almost urban look to your yard could be a great approach depending on your home’s overall decor.

Pool Landscaping Designs

If you have a pool in your backyard, then there are other considerations for you.  If you’re looking for ways of improving or softening your pool landscape, then you should consider xeriscaping as a great option.  In many cases, this will also reduce the amount of debris and leaves that fall into your pool.  This is one point that many homeowners are not aware of when they shop for or plant their shrubs, trees and flowers around the pool.  The pool decking and furniture will also compromise part of the ‘landscape’ around your pool.

Of course, there are other landscape designs that could be a combination of all or part of these above.  If you found these backyard landscaping ideas helpful in creating your own backyard oasis retreat, contact us and send them over.  Maybe yours can be added to our gallery and become a hybrid description above!  Best of luck!


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