Hillside Garden Ideas

Take advantage of a hillside landscape by creating an inviting, colorful design filled with favorite plants like flowers, shrubs and ground covers. Many plants and flowers planted along the sloped land not only help to prevent erosion but provide bursts of vibrant color and texture to the garden. Creating a pathway along the hillside garden allows easy access to areas of the garden and provides a resting spot while working in the flowerbeds


Connect areas of the hillside together such as a sunken patio to a perennial garden by creating a stone staircase. Made from a wide range of durable materials including, brick, state, flagstone and concrete, hillside staircases help to draw you into the garden and create a focal point to the landscape. Flagstone makes for an ideal stone because of its stacking ability and dramatic earth-toned colors. The rich blues, deep greens and dramatic purples of flagstone create an impressive landscape display. To build an average-sized staircase, make sure the path is at least 2- to 3-feet wide. This allows gardening equipment like wheelbarrows to easily maneuver through the hillside and is also an ideal size for a strolling path to admire the garden.

Water Feature

Watch water cascade down the hillside and spill into a pond below by installing a water feature. The trickling noise of water fountains help to create a relaxing feel to the garden and provides a natural landscape design. To create a water garden feature, allow the water to follow the natural curves of the hillside. Line the feature with river rocks and water-loving plants such as ferns and watercress to create a lush look to the feature. Hostas and wild ginger are also bright-green plants that enjoy the overspray of a water feature while helping to define and accent the hillside. Low-growing perennials like moss hug the waterfall rocks and provide a burst of contrast to the garden.

Evergreen Plants

Evergreen ground covers and shrubs help to provide constant height, color and texture to the hillside landscape. Because they keep their foliage color all year long, these plants keep the hillside in color during winter when many plants have died down for the season. Evergreen ground covers such as creeping thyme and juniper help to hold the soil within the hillside and fill in low areas of the landscape. A steep or gradual slope of a hillside is an ideal spot for creeping ivies and sedums. Evergreen shrubs like hollies, cedars and boxwoods create height to the hillside landscape and year-round color.

Keywords: hillside garden ideas, stone staircase, water feature, evergreen plants

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 Travels.com and GardenGuides.com. Barber holds a Bachelors of Arts in international studies from the University of North Carolina.