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Backyard garden ideas are often a hidden gem when it comes to garden design. Yes, they may be small, but they can be lovely sun traps and places to get away from it all.
An indoor garden is often described as “a flat space surrounded by walls”, which already doesn’t sound like the most inspiring small garden idea to work with. But while your space may be overlooked by neighboring walls, it can be a space where shade-loving plants thrive, and you can get creative with your choice of landscaping, furnishings, and touches. decorative when considering backyard garden ideas.
There are also other pros. Stone and brick walls absorb and trap heat from the sun, releasing it slowly – your yard could be a haven at the end of the work day. Likewise, the walls around your yard can act as a barrier to rainfall, so you’ll need to think more carefully about plants, perhaps choosing ones that don’t need a lot of watering, while frosts might not. not be as harsh, so fruit trees might fare better.
Interior and garden stylist and author Lake Selina likes a backyard garden. “I’m always inspired by the courtyard gardens you find tucked away in the center of Paris,” she shares. “I love their whimsical secret garden charm and classic style.”
So maybe it’s time to think small and creatively, turning your inner garden into your own hidden paradise.
Backyard Garden Ideas
1. Dress up your yard walls
Update tired brick with wood siding, giving your garden a contemporary feel. Place large planters in front, which can be filled with perennials for color. If your yard is dark at night, simple spotlights will create an ambient glow.
Space-saving bistro furniture is the best patio furniture choice for a backyard. Choose compact chairs that are comfortable enough to double as lounge chairs, adding a cushion or two if necessary.
2. Set up a sofa corner
It is important to be smart about space when considering planning a small garden space like a yard. A good place to start is to think about built-in seats.
Use the same brick as the walls surrounding your yard to build a corner sofa that can be dressed with throw pillows. Build such a sofa slightly higher than normal, allowing you to move a garden table and chairs around to create an informal dining area. Use overhanging trees as a natural umbrella, while clematis will add pops of color when in bloom.
3. Add a classic bench
Even the smallest of yards or side returns can become a welcoming retreat. Try a traditional bench, which you can decorate with fun outdoor throw pillows, echoing your planting scheme for a cohesive look.
Use the walls with trellises and hanging baskets – they’re the perfect planting solution for small patio ideas because you won’t waste valuable floor space. A large lantern will give your yard a warm glow, just turn off all interior lights to fully appreciate it as the sun sets.
4. Bring interest to the center with a hero tree
Plant a hero tree in the middle of your backyard garden, creating a beautiful feature. Choose a palm that will love a shady environment – you may also find that you don’t need to protect it in the winter, thanks to the mini microclimate of your indoor garden.
Trees can also be used to zone a small space, dividing a yard into eating and lounging areas, or even expanding a small garden.
5. Add a feature wall
Bring one of our favorite indoor tricks outside to your backyard garden – the feature wall. It’s a great way to break up a corner of the same brick work. If you don’t want to paint old bricks, attach a painted slatted panel to the front (think those slatted wall designs behind TVs that are so trendy for inspiration).
Paint your feature wall black, which can carry over into your choice of bistro furniture, giving a Scandinavian feel, while a fern, potted or planted in a raised bed, will thrive and create a dappled shade on your table.
6. Render for a contemporary setting
White walls will instantly make a courtyard garden bright and contemporary – think of a boutique hotel courtyard for inspiration, adding chic black rattan furniture with white cushions. Introduce garden lighting ideas into the space, downlighters will help create an inviting ambiance for an evening glass of wine, while potted laurels and a planter of seasonal bedding plants soften the monochromatic feel.
7. Double the feeling of space with a mirror
Hang an outdoor mirror to reflect your backyard garden, increasing the sense of space. There are many garden mirror ideas to choose from, a horizontally hung mirror will act almost like a garden window. You can also consider a full-length window mirror that will make a statement. This effect will also give the illusion of doubling the amount of planting you have as well.
To complete the space-enhancing tip, think about how furniture can double, with a bench that can be pushed up to a bistro set when entertaining more than two people. Make a small backyard feel like a natural extension of a kitchen-dining space by continuing flooring from one to the other – slate-effect porcelain is a great choice.
8. Fill with plants and gardenalia
Be inspired by country house courtyard gardens, where gravelled and brick walkways house an eclectic mix of plants and collectibles. When choosing plants, go for a mix of evergreens and evergreens that thrive in partially shaded areas.
‘The Ilex Dome is ideal for adding evergreen structure to your outdoor space. It has small dark green glossy leaves and produces small white flowers in summer. The domes are evergreen, which means they are always green. Domes like full sun but can work well in partially shaded areas,” recommends Will Williams, co-founder and creative director of Soto Gardens.
‘Dwarf Mountain Pine, also known as Pinus mugo ‘Mops’, provides color, structure and texture to your outdoor space all year round. This pine is almost indestructible and does not require much pruning.
Will also suggests including Astrantia Shaggy is an absolute spectacle. ‘It has small jewels like white flowers reminiscent of pincushions, surrounded by a long greenish-white ruff. It is a perennial plant, which means that it blooms every year.
Arrange your plants between crates, terracotta pots and galvanized tubs. Even an old wash mangle adds interest to this shady nook, while vines, grasses, boxwood and mini evergreens provide year-round green.
9. Think of it as an outdoor living room
Plan a yard as a living room, adding an outdoor fireplace and sofa. Choose a rendered fireplace wall design that can be painted a signature color, even adding niches for display. For flooring, use paving to create a pattern, mimicking a rug, while planting provides the “fourth” wall of this newly created cozy outdoor room.
10. Go tropical in a side back yard
If you’ve extended to the back and now have a side return yard left, create a visual foliage feast with shade-loving ferns – you’ll love seeing the splash of green through the sliding doors or French windows. Add downlights to light up the night – the planting will look much more spectacular thanks to the shadows they create.
Draw the eye further away from the house with a palm tree or fern planted against your back wall or fence.
What do you put in a yard?
It depends on the size, but the furniture will create an instant outdoor room vibe. “He has to invite you into space,” says Selina. “I love an outdoor sofa, which you can style with throw pillows and throws.”
No room for a table, so Selina says to opt for a bistro set. “You can create a romantic outdoor dining setting by adding a few candles, lanterns, and vases of freshly picked, fragrant flowers.”
Pots and planters will also help soften the hard edges of your yard walls; try varying the height to add depth to a corner, while climbers can create a beautiful feature wall. “I use plants with beautiful flowers and pleasant scents, as well as those that can be trellised to grow the walls, freeing up floor space for furniture and living. My favorites would be roses, jasmine and wisteria,” says Selina.
The trick is to think of your yard as a room, decorating its walls and floor, before adding plants, furniture and accessories.
How to brighten up a backyard garden?
“Paint the new walls white,” says Selina Lake. ‘It’s a classic thing but it works so well. Remember to use exterior masonry paint. If you’re lucky enough to have old brick or stone walls, celebrate their heritage and choose white flowering plants to walk through them instead.
You can also use lighting to create a mini outdoor room at dusk. “Just attach string lights or hooks attached to the walls to hang lanterns for ambient evening light,” says Selina.