1. START SMALL WITH CONTAINER PLANTING
Raised beds are cool and all but a lot of work. And as anyone with a small backyard knows, who has the space? If you still want to grow herbs, edible plants, and flowers, container gardening is your new bestie.
It works for absolutely every type of backyard or garden space under the sun and is especially ideal for renters who want to take their plants with them. Plus, you have the chance to get creative with both the plant and the pot to make a really beautiful display. Mix it up with herbs and scented flowers. Hydrangeas look great in a container, while you can team upright florals alongside trailing plants like creeping rosemary or ivy.
2. LANDSCAPE, SUBTLY
For a curated backyard that’s styled yet subtle, choose low trees, planted simply in rows of three for definition. It’s enough to elevate a space and add privacy to a yard without creating a space that’s too high maintenance.
3. PLANT VERTICALLY ON A PATIO
Even concrete-filled patios have the chance to feel a little greener. Make your outdoor furniture pop with a matching garden plant scheme that features plants in vertical containers.
4. REPEAT PLANTING AND COLORS FOR IMPACT
For an eye-popping display, repeat planting of wildflowers is the way to go. Choose tall-growing perennials that are colorful (and hardy). Foxgloves are an all-time fave, plus the bees love them, too. Rose mallow, hollyhocks, valerian, and globe thistles are other nice choices for bold summer color and fragrance.
5. FRAME AN OUTDOOR DINING AREA
Gorgeous borders make for a beautiful display in all areas of your backyard, so consider making raised borders part of your garden design if you have the space. Plant a variety of greenery and bright flowers, and build it around an outdoor dining spot for a chic and decorative finish that will make your guests feel like the center of attention.
6. INTRODUCE ONE MAJOR POP OF COLOR
Choosing just one pop of color is enough to make a backyard look chic and even a little expensive, sans the effort of a complete redo. Grab furniture or accent decor that matches the colors of your favorite potted flowers or use patterned pillows as your burst of florals if you don’t have a green thumb.
7. CREATE AN ORGANIC LAYOUT
It’s all about balance when you’re choosing your favorite backyard ideas. You want the space to be just as beautiful as it is functional. This yard is big, but puts all the space to good use, weaving in good garden landscaping techniques.
By continuing the deck material through to the dining and seating areas, all the little outdoor pockets feel cohesive.
8. ADD A BOHO TOUCH
Missed out on Coachella? No problem. Make your backyard area or patio feel like a festival with boho touches. Investing in a cozy modular outdoor sofa, fairy lights, patterned soft furnishings, and even a fire pit and you’ll be sure to ignite that same spirit in your own backyard.
9. PLANT FOR YOUR CLIMATE
If you live in California, you’re going to be working with a more Mediterranean-like climate, in comparison to if your backyard is in Florida and a little more tropical. It’s no secret that the climate you live in will ultimately define your garden ideas.
So if you live in a particularly dry area, embrace it with xeriscaping, which is actually a very beautiful and resourceful way to garden. Little or no irrigation is required so it’s ideal for a low-maintenance garden or backyard.
10. ADD TREES THAT BECOME FOCAL POINTS
Outdoor spaces and trees go hand in hand, and if you’re lacking these lovely plants in your backyard, we recommend buying some. If you have a tiny balcony, patio, or deck, try finding trees like olive, apple, or cherry, which do totally fine in pots.
If you’re lucky enough to have a space with mature trees, these can be a great starting point for your garden design, adding natural height and structure to your backyard. And other than being an attractive feature, trees also create wonderful habitats for birds and wildlife.
11. CHOOSE FEATHERY GRASSES FOR MODERNITY
If you like a more luxurious backyard look, then try including ornamental grasses as part of a minimalist planting approach is the best way to achieve that. Include a daybed for extra points and keep all your other outdoor furniture streamlined and modern.
12. START A KITCHEN GARDEN IN RAISED BEDS
There’s a whole host of fruits and vegetables that you can grow in your garden and building raised beds yourself is super satisfying. The best part is, you can do it no matter what size backyard or outdoor area you have. You’ll also feel super proud when you can start eating from your own garden. Many plants even flower, like zucchinis, so you’re guaranteed a gorgeous and tasty display.
13. CREATE AN ORGANIC GARDEN
Organic gardening is the way forward for us all. And, it’s a great garden idea that will not only benefit your health but Mother Nature’s, too. Without using pesticides and by being resourceful in your garden, you will enjoy a beautiful display of plants and most likely some great wildlife, too.
14. CHOOSE CLIMBING PLANTS TO CREATE PRIVACY
Climbing plants will bring glory to every backyard. Climbers are enormously inviting to wildlife, and offer beautiful views and backdrops in the process. Trailing and climbing plants also help block any ugly walls or features in your backyard. Most are pretty low-maintenance too (win-win!).
15. PLANT SUCCULENTS FOR LOW-MAINTENANCE BUT HIGH-IMPACT
We are big fans of plants that you can’t kill, which is why succulents are a no-brainer for every type of backyard or balcony space. Whichever type you choose, their cool colors, shapes, and textures will bring a modern feel to your outdoor space. Just pop them in coarse, gritty soil in a pot with drainage, set them up in a sunny spot, and let nature do the rest.
16. FRAME A LIVING WALL
We love the added impact that the frame adds to this succulent display and living wall. It’s a fabulous way to add interest to your backyard. Visually, these garden ideas are beautiful and will draw the eye up, creating the illusion of a bigger space, while they also help create a soothing atmosphere (yes, please). Because no floor space is required, they’re must-haves for balconies, patios, and small backyards.
Opt for evergreen varieties so you get a pretty display year-round. Climbers are a great choice if you want your green wall to grow up directly from the ground, so jasmine, honeysuckle, and similar plants are nice options.
17. COMPLEMENT GREENERY WITH NATURAL INTERIORS
For a genuine feeling of being in your living room, but outdoors, enhance your surroundings with super modern rattan outdoor furniture. Even if you’ve painted a pergola to brighten up this corner of your yard, nodding to natural materials in your soft and hard furnishings will create a super cohesive space. Bringing cushions and lots of lighting into the mix makes this a fun hang-out spot.
18. ADD SOME COVER
Any area that’s basically dead space but still completely useable can become the perfect backyard nook. Add a roof, throw a small garden coffee table in the center, gather a few favorite chairs, and you’re good to go!
19. PLANT AROUND YOUR DECK FOR WARMTH AND TEXTURE
Defining areas in your backyard is a clever way to create the illusion of different rooms in your garden. This can be achieved using plants, outdoor furniture, different landscaping materials, and even garden fencing.