You don’t have to be a pro landscaper to turn your yard into an oasis. From privacy fences (which don’t have to be fences at all) to storage solutions that go beyond sheds, here are 21 ideas to make your yard your new favorite place to spend the summer.
SEE BEYOND THE FENCE
Plant for privacy
- A privacy fence is an obvious choice to make your backyard a haven for fun and relaxation, but sometimes it can be a budget breaker. If you’re seeking a way to add solitude without spending too much, think plants. Trailing plants, such as ivy, in hanging pots can provide a lush, living screen. Backyard Landscaping Ideas offers this list of trailing plants to consider.
- Likewise, vines (morning glory or clematis are great choices) planted in pots and guided upward via fishing line or wire attached to the pot and a patio cover or roof can grow into a botanical barrier. Vines also grow great on trellises or lattice. Check out these top 10 choices for privacy from BobVila.com.
- Bamboo also is a great choice because it grows tall and lush and creates a dense screen. Plant in either the ground or the planter.
- If you’re patient, a living wall of plants or a shrubbery fence can offer great privacy but will take some time to fill in to screen your yard from your neighbors or the street.
Screen yourself in
- Portable privacy screens are a great alternative to a fence. They are less permanent than a fence and can be moved from place to place in the yard. They also can add beautiful visual touches to your yard or a splash of color in just the right place.
- If you want to DIY, lattice is a great way to build a privacy screen on a budget.
- Lattice also can be a great way to extend the height of your fence. Again, this can be a budget-conscious DIY option.
- Old doors connected by hinges also are perfect for a DIY privacy screen. Connect them with hinges and you can move and arrange them anyway you need. Pinterest is ripe with ideas and instructions on doing so with ease.
- Privacy curtains made of durable outdoor fabric can provide the retreat you want, as well as shade from the summer sun. Like screens, they can provide a pop of color and personality that you can change based on mood or furniture choices.
STORE WITH FLAIR
Dress up your shed
- Storage sheds are the go-to solution for storing everything from the lawn mower to pool toys, but they aren’t always the prettiest addition to a yard. Luckily, you can change that. A bright splash of paint is a good start, but why not up that with some artwork. Thrift store prints, your kids artwork or even that painting there’s no place for in the house can be used to adorn the outdoor structures, all it takes is a little weatherproofing.
- Old window frames painted cheerfully also can add some visual interest to your boring shed.
- Attach planters to the shed’s side and let your color palette be a living thing.
Store where you sit
- Padded benches that fit your patio decor are available at big-box or garden stores. They offer a comfy place to sit as well as a super storage option. DIY is an option, too, with abundant bench construction tutorials available online. There also are lots of tutorials on adding padding or making cushions.
Store where you sip
- Just as a bench can offer a hidden storage solution, so can an outdoor coffee table. Get some easy instructions for building your own outdoor coffee table here.
Get creative with everyday items
- Old wooden pallets make great racks for holding tools or toys.
- Hanging shoe racks also are a great way to keep tools and toys organized.
- Wooden planters with space below offer a great storage spot.
LIGHT AND LIVEN IT UP
A few more ideas to add some more fun
- Christmas lights aren’t just for the holidays. A strand or two of white lights can add a year-round festive touch to your patio. Or, there are abundant themed strands available online, from stars to flamingos to flip flops.
- Just as color is an asset for your shed or your flower beds, it can be just the thing to take your patio furniture from dull to dazzling. Bright hues and fanciful prints and patterns can take relaxing to a whole new level.
- If you have a tree, why not add a swing. Some rope and a solid piece of wood can bring the whimsy of your childhood alive for your kids.
- Texture can change everything. Stone, brick, pea gravel or river rock can add visual interest to your yard. If you don’t want to build a garden wall, a path can bring in the color and texture you’re seeking.
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