Garden Ideas for the Backyard

Spend more time outdoors in the backyard by utilizing the given space to create a backyard oasis for relaxing or entertaining. Create an inviting landscape that draws you outdoors by personalizing the landscape with favorite plants and flowers. Add a garden path to connect areas of the backyard like an outdoor arbor and patio. Remember to have fun and don't be afraid to add or take out items as you go along.

Perennial Border

Perennial borders are ideal along backyard fence lines, flanking a garden path or pergola for bright bursts of color and texture. They provide an attractive backdrop that looks striking when viewed from any angle of the backyard landscape and once planted, keep growing year after year for a long-lasting garden display. When planting a border, grow taller plants like elephant's ear, hollyhocks, foxglove and hibiscus in the back of the bed to create dramatic height to the border. Medium sized perennials like showy sedum, black-eyed Susan and purple coneflowers are ideal in the middle of the bed to help fill out the border. Low-growing plants like creeping thyme and phlox, as well as salvia, look striking when planted along the edge of the perennial border. These creeping plants also help to fill around hard-to-reach areas of the border because of their trailing and spreading qualities.

Vine-Covered Pergola

A pergola makes for the perfect structure to grow favorite flowering vines and climbing plants. Pergola's covered in lush foliage and dripping flowers also helps to create a makeshift "roof" that helps shade the space below. Used for outdoor living and dining, they are a relaxing area to enjoy while being in the backyard space. Creeping vines like Carolina jasmine produce fragrant, spring-blooming flowers that light up the pergola with color. They have a trailing and twining climbing method and moderate to rapid growth rate that will have the pergola covered in no time. Carolina jasmine is also an evergreen vine and retains its foliage all season long, ideal for the pergola when the cooler months of fall and winter set in, a time when many plants are dormant.

Water Feature

Water features create a soothing, relaxing sound to the backyard space and when nestled within a perennial garden or alongside a pergola, create a focal point to the space. Made from a wide range of materials including, concrete, metal and plastic, water features are available in many sizes to accommodate any size backyard. Tall water features made from concrete or a container fountain look attractive when tucked within the backyard landscape. Appearing as if they are rising from the garden, they draw you eye into the space. Alongside the water feature, plant water-loving plants like ferns and hostas. They'll enjoy the over spray from the fountain and help to create a lush and jungly feel.

Keywords: backyard garden ideas, perennial border, vine-covered pergola, water feature

About this Author

Callie Barber has been writing professionally since 2002. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate indoor and outdoor living environments. Her articles have appeared on and Barber holds a Bachelors of Arts in international studies from the University of North Carolina.