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5 Design Elements for Your Backyard

Posted by Maricriz Rodriguez

Dec 3, 2019 5:00:00 PM

Designing a backyard depends on how you want it to look like and meet your needs. You may already have various ideas and concept designs in mind. Nevertheless, it all boils down to your want to make your backyard cozy and functional.


It's important, however, to note that when designing your backyard you should take into consideration your outdoor space and terrain. If you aren't confident with your DIY skills, it's wise to consult landscape contractors who can help you create or refurbish your outdoor space properly.

In this article, you will learn the 5 steps to design your backyard - so read on!


Building a pathway is necessary especially when you have a garden, patio, and pool in your yard. This will help you and your guests navigate through your backyard easily without getting dirty. There are various affordable materials that you can use in constructing your pathway, such as:

  1. Gravel - such as crushed gravel, crushed limestone, crushed stone, and pea rock. These are inexpensive gravel for the pathway that you can easily purchase in your area. Aside from being cost effective, it's also durable, easy to maintain and cannot be washed away.
  2. Mulch - are cheaper and lighter than stone and can be spread and hauled easily. Wood chips, cocoa beans, and cypress bark are the common kinds of mulch. However, organic paths perish over some time. Thus, you need to replenish them every two to five years. Moreover, if you have a poor drainage system in your yard do not use mulch as your path.
  3. Stepping-Stone Paths with Yard Stones - are considered faster and easier to build. Although, the stones are heavy and require digging, yet it's cheaper and also durable.

Similarly, bordering and edging are important when building a pathway to prevent the material from being blown away into your lawn or flower bed. There are several types of cheap edging such as plastic landscape edging, steel or aluminum edging, brick and stone borders, concrete edging and landscape timbers.


Patios are a functional addition to your backyard. However, building patios depends on the size of your backyard and the budget that you are willing to spend. When planning to construction a patio, consider these:


  1. Choose a Place
    A patio shouldn't always be adjacent to the house. You can build it farther making it good for a private retreat. However, if you want your patio as a dining area, it should be near the kitchen as much as possible.
  2. Have the Right SizeThe patio's size depends on its use and purpose. If it's for family, make the size enough to serve the needs of your family members. If it's for future gatherings you'll need a bigger one to accommodate a larger crowd.
  3. Pick a MaterialFor patio flooring, the common materials used are brick, concrete, slate, and flagstone. It can be alone or a combination of any of the materials and should match the style of your home.
  4. Select DetailsA patio can be as simple as a piece of concrete. But it can also be complex - loaded with various amenities such as low-voltage lighting, planters, fountains, or fireplaces.
  5. Plan your Plantings
    The presence of trees, flowers, and shrubs adds beauty and attraction to your patio. However, make sure that it will complement instead of overwhelming the space.


Once your pathways and patio are in place. You can start planting trees that thrive well in your area. Trees serve as your best shade and backdrop for your patio, pool, or the entire backyard.

Trees add beauty and serve as habitat for local wildlife. However, if they're branches reached your roof and power lines then it's best to trim them down.


Adding plants into your backyard should be properly planned for it to look appealing and harmonious. Otherwise, they will look like background noise or an overwhelming, unnecessary element.

The first step to designing your landscape is to select a focal point. After exploring your focal point, start planting bigger plants first then to smaller ones. Try to look into specifics before planting any kind of plant, such as shrubs and flowers to maintain the best results as possible.

Shrubs should be planted near your house but they should be lower than your window when fully grown. Subsequently, flowers, taller shrubs, and other colorful plants should be placed in the exterior and serve as a backdrop.



Introduced a flower garden in your yard and it will add color and impact to your backward. While your gardening experience and budget will be put to test here - it'll be a worthy addition to your yard.

Your garden can be anything from simple to complex. Simple plants require low-maintenance care such as perennial plants that keep on coming back year after year. You can also try having an edible garden. If you are considering a particular garden style like a traditional landscape design, this may cost more and may require higher maintenance.

Building a garden shed is also a great idea to spice up your backyard. You can use it as a functional space, such as an outdoor office space or a storage space.

Topics: yard, Home Improvement, Landscaping