Small Yard Landscaping

October 4, 2008

A small yard is no easier to landscape than a large yard. In fact, it poses its own special challenges because of the tight spaces that are available for the different landscaping elements. The key to landscaping a small yard into the perfect yard to fit your needs is planning exactly how the space will be used. It is possible to create an enormous number of functional areas and attractive designs in even the smallest of spaces.

The first step is to think about exactly how the space it to be used and what elements of a yard you can’t live without. If you use the yard mainly for dogs to exercise in, children to play in or to get outdoors for relaxation time, those uses have their own specific needs. You can accommodate most needs into a small space, but there are a few things that will probably not fit into a small yard. A large water feature and huge boulders probably won’t be possible, but a breathtaking garden certainly is.

If your primary concern is the beauty of the yard, start with brightly-colored flowers and plants. Even in the smallest of yards there is room for at least a flower border or a few small flower beds. If the flower beds are designed with flowers of different colors and sizes, the bed will have the illusion of more depth. The bright colors will attract the eye and the entire yard will get a boost of liveliness from the flowers.

Flower bulbs are a popular way to landscape small yards because they generally grow tall and straight and don’t require a great deal of room in order to grow large, colorful flowers. A planting of bulbs along the edges of the home creates an instant flower bed that takes little effort. Bulbs can also be planted along the front walk for a bright, cheerful border.

If privacy is one of your main concerns, there are a number of large pants that can grow into living fences to keep out prying eyes. There are a number of bushes and large grassy plants that grow quickly from seeds into privacy shields. Plants like bamboo, Rose of Sharon grow into tall plants that can create a backyard oasis that is as private as you like.

To add to a small yard, also consider container plants. These can be placed on a porch, patio or even in the year to add more plant life in a small space. Many plant species grow well in containers, and those plants can then be taken indoors for the winter.

If you plan to spend time in the yard, be sure to keep some open space. If can be tempting to fill every inch of a small yard with beautiful flowers and green plants, but without an open space it will be difficult to enjoy those plants. An open space in the center of the yard will allow you to spend time amongst your flowers and to be able to access them for fertilizing and deadheading.

If the space allows for it, create several different areas within the yard. This gives the yard a feeling of having much more space than it does. A play area, an adults’ lounging area and an herb garden may all fit into a small yard if they are planned for in advance. With a rough sketch of the yard, create a plan that fits the scale of the yard. By utilizing all of the space, you might be surprised as to how many different functional areas your small yard can accommodate.


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