Combine flagstone hardscapes and green softscapes with elements like a gazebo, a fountain and a firepit for beautiful additions to your backyard vista. Select the hardscapes based on the design and style of the structures and the softscapes based on your hardiness zone.
A gazebo adds charm to any backyard, especially if you include evergreen shrubs and flowering perennials around the perimeter and along the walkway leading to the structure. You can find a wide variety of gazebo styles at your local garden and home stores and from online retailers. Surround the gazebo with a flower bed that includes low growing evergreen shrubs such as Dwarf Alberta Spruce or Emerald Green Arborvitae for year round color. Include daylilies, calla lilies, peonies and mums for color that will begin in the spring and last through the fall. Create a path from your back patio to the gazebo with flagstone and low growing herbs such as thyme or mint planted in the crevices. Scents from the fragrant herbs will release whenever someone brushes against them. Planting the herbs will also help with weed prevention along your walkway.
Include a fountain as a focal point in your backyard, surrounded by a cobblestone platform rimmed with fragrant flowering herbs. A tiered fountain is a perfect choice to make a beautiful statement in your backyard. You can find a wide assortment of two- to four-tiered fountains online made from concrete, metal and wood. Design the cobblestone platform based on the shape of your fountain; a round patio fits well with a circular fountain, a rectangle works better for fountains with angular lines. Flowering herbs such as Salem rosemary and ornamental oregano will create a beautiful border around the cobblestone hardscape.
Add a place for conversation and relaxation in your backyard with a firepit on a tiled patio surrounded by comfortable outdoor seating. Fire crystals are a beautiful complement to a contemporary gas firepit; the flames dance through the colorful crystals rather than ceramic logs. Slate tiles fit in well with the contemporary design. You could also make your own wood burning firepit by stacking stones or bricks around an excavated area of your backyard. The same material, brick or stone, will also work for your patio. Plant fragrant, night-blooming flowers such as evening primrose, tuberose or moonflowers for added color during your evening gatherings.