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There’s no area in your home more precious than the backyard. It’s your personal outdoor oasis where you can enjoy a little taste of nature and fresh air. The great thing about the backyard is that it can be made even more comfortable and attractive. There are countless things you can add to transform your backyard to get it closer to your dream oasis. If you’re looking for ideas, here are a few that might inspire you to make some changes and transform your backyard.
A stone patio
Once the warm weather arrives and the sun starts to rear its head, spending time in the backyard will become a daily pastime. This means you need to prepare the backyard for some quality outdoor leisure. While the ground itself is stable enough to put furniture on, it might sink or cause imbalances when you bring in any heavier furniture. If you’re looking to create a convenient outdoor area, modifying it would be your best bet.
Having a patio outside would make for an even more comfortable outside experience. The patio surface would allow you to set up chairs and tables for coffee and lunch. Different patios come with different benefits and drawbacks.
Stone patios have become particularly popular as of late. They allow for more versatility compared to wooden patios, and you can have them reach as far into the garden as you want. With a stone patio, you can create interesting and irregular shapes as well. Border it with curved beds and plants and you’ll create a very interesting and naturalistic display.
For even more emphasis on the patio, you should consider raising the base a little. This makes the backyard look bigger and it makes cleaning the patio a lot easier. At the same time, you need to create a tiny slope to prevent water build-up. To best encourage water runoff, you’ll want an eighth of an inch of the slope going away from the house.
Greenery all year round
The type of plants you have in your garden influences how it will look year-round. Most homeowners will load their gardens up with plants that are spring and early summer blossoms. These plants start to shine around springtime and give the garden a fresh and wonderfully colorful look. While this is generally the period in which you’ll be spending most of your time to transform your backyard, you shouldn’t neglect the design during autumn and winter.
There are lots of plants that look fresh and green throughout the year, so why not utilize them? The backyard should delight your senses whenever you look out the window, even if you aren’t spending too much time there.
Adding a few annual petunias would do a lot of good for your garden when the seasons shift. Plants like impatiens keep their colour well after the temperature drops in autumn. Japanese maples are another wonderful choice. They turn a fiery red colour during the start of the cold season, which would look grand compared to the dull colours left over after leaves fall. Even birch leaves take on a golden hue in autumn, which is one of the reasons you should have them in your yard. Even during the winter, when most plants die down, many of these examples will still shine through with their ornamental bark. It gives you a delightful view no matter which season it is outside.
Moving water fixtures
There’s nothing quite as soothing as the sound of moving water. Spending time around ponds and fountains is relaxing as can be, so why not bring a little bit of that feeling to your own home? Having a moving water fixture can add an air of luxury to your backyard, while also making you feel even more comfortable in warmer weather.
Setting up a fountain or pond isn’t as complicated as you might think. All you really need is a small basin for the pond and some rocks to decorate it. For the moving water part, you just need a small pump and a hose. If you want to provide further decoration other than using a few local rocks, there are lots of different fountain details you can buy or create on your own. Your imagination and budget are the only real limits to transform your backyard to make it appealing and providing an ambiance.
One of the great benefits of moving water fixtures is that they naturalize your backyard. They bring in birds, frogs, and beneficial insects to your doorstep, creating a more natural environment where plants can better thrive. Not to mention, seeing a few frogs and squirrels in your yard is definitely going to make it look more like a cozy slice of nature.
Any plant lover will want to introduce as many plants to their backyard as possible. However, at some point, you’re going to reach a limit. Whether you have a green thumb or not, there are only so many plants that can fit in a horizontal space. You don’t want to create a cluttered garden or backyard, so you’ll probably only stick with a set number of plants and won’t go beyond it.
However, there’s still a way to add more plants to your backyard without necessarily making it overcrowded. Instead of trying to add plants on free surfaces on the ground, you should be aiming up.
Vertical gardening is a great way to make some extra room for new plants that otherwise wouldn’t be able to fit in your yard. Not to mention, you also have the opportunity to decorate vertical surfaces and cover blemishes. Wall-mounted pots can contain any plants that you would otherwise place in pots, but with added benefits.
Vines can have a lot more room to grow outside their normal placement and cover surfaces that you want to be greener. Plant leaves and branches can hang from the sides and grow a lot more than they would by simply being on the ground. You can create some very intricate systems by placing vines on the pillars of your pergola. There’s really no limit to what you can achieve aesthetically when you introduce a third dimension to your gardening. Play around with wall-mounted pots and you’ll find that you can make new and interesting colourful displays with your home’s sides as well as any free walls or fences.
A garden path
One of the main reasons you work on your garden is so that you can enjoy the gorgeous view you’ve created. While the view might be great from your porch or patio, it would be even nicer if you could walk through your garden while admiring it. Well, this is perfectly feasible for most gardens, so why not try it out and transform your backyard to include some astonishing views.
Most homeowners don’t install walking paths in their gardens simply because it doesn’t seem practical at first. If the garden isn’t particularly large, why bother with a stone path? It’s not just about the size of the garden or backyard. A walking path gives you the opportunity to emphasize certain plants and their placement. It shows guests where to go and how to absorb the beauty of the garden. It puts attention to what’s in front of the viewer or viewers, instead of just letting them look around freely.
The pace of walking is slowed and you can have a nice conversation with guests about your garden. Go through each plant and how it contributes to the little slice of heaven you’ve made for yourself. Alternatively, just use it as a gorgeous backdrop and enjoy the scenery while conversing.
You can make your path out of gravel or concrete, depending on what you prefer. Concrete provides a simpler long-term solution, while gravel might shift and move as time passes. Either way, maintaining your garden path is important if you want to keep it functional.
Regular backyard maintenance
The look of your backyard needs to be maintained regularly. All the other additions you might have planned only act as a backdrop to the backyard and garden. To keep your green oasis cozy and attractive, you have to make sure that the landscaping is done properly.
There’s a lot of work that has to be done to maintain and transform your backyard to make it perfect. Rake the leaves as they pile up so that you keep the lawn clear and have composting material to work with. If weeds are starting to grow in your garden, it would be best to get rid of them as soon as possible, so that they don’t start interfering with your desired plants. Any bushes and trees that are outgrowing their stay should be trimmed, of course.
To make things easier on yourself, make sure you have the right equipment for the job. Some plants are a bit harder to take care of than others. Bamboo trees are sharp, which is why clearing debris often requires that you have garden gloves on hand. Secateurs can come in handy for precise snipping of unwanted branches and leaves. For tougher weeds, you might need a weeder to deal with the problem. Maintenance and landscaping are a lot easier when you have the right garden equipment and tools on your side. It’s a given that you’ll have to deal with these things on a regular basis, so why not make the process simpler and more convenient? With adequate tools, you can spend less time maintaining the backyard and more time enjoying the view.
Spending time in the backyard is given during the day. As night falls, visibility drops and your home’s lights aren’t bright enough to illuminate most of the backyard nor the garden. Nobody likes spending time in pitch-black darkness, so you probably won’t be moving far from your patio. On the other hand, you could always increase visibility by adding some lights to your garden.
Ambient garden lighting can do wonders to transform your backyard during the night time. It can change the mood of the area and allow you to spend more time admiring your hard work. Strategic lighting placement can enhance the landscape or simply serve as a decorative element all by itself. Better yet, it can do both at the same time.
There are more than a few lighting options available for outdoor home spaces. You can install string lights and have them hang from your pergola to pillars that you install along with your garden. It would create wonderful overhead lighting arrangements that would give off a Christmas feel. Step lights can be useful for illuminating parts of your garden path, making it easier to walk there during the night. If you want to go the old-timey route, hanging lanterns would be a practical solution. You can pick them up whenever you want to go for a stroll through your yard and set them on a table when you want to have a seat.
For outdoor lighting, LEDs are the most practical options. They provide good illumination and last long enough that you won’t have to think about replacing them any time soon. With the help of solar batteries, you won’t have to do much to maintain them. As an added bonus, they’re the most efficient lights you can get.
There’s no shortage of ideas to transform your backyard and make it cozier and more welcoming than it was before. As long as you have the right ideas and tools on your side, anything is possible. Consider some of the above changes for your backyard and try to apply them. It’s pretty much guaranteed to turn your backyard into the dream refuge that you desire.