With spring and summer around the corner, now is a great time to start thinking about improvements you can make to your backyard.
A few simple upgrades can make your backyard a more enjoyable place to spend time, and it can increase the overall value of your home.
So here are ten ways you can take your backyard to the next level:
1. Build a deck
A deck can be a nice addition to your backyard. Decks are great for having outside barbeques as well as just hanging out to get some fresh air.
You can hire a professional to install a deck for several thousand dollars or you can do it yourself by buying all the materials and finding instructions online. In some cases, a DIY deck option will put you back only $1,000 or less.
2. Plant a garden
An easy way to add more life to your backyard is to plant a garden. There are many options here. You can plant a flower garden, vegetable garden, herb garden, and more.
You can even build a greenhouse so you can protect your garden and control its temperature and humidity. This is especially useful if you live in a cold climate with a short growing season, for example.
Design your garden in a way that’s easy on the eye. Place garden planters and pots in a strategic way that makes good use of the space you have. And don’t forget to use landscape fabric to help prevent weeds from growing and to help with drainage.
3. Install an outdoor kitchen
If you like eating outside, consider installing an outdoor kitchen. You can install an outdoor flat top grill, an outdoor oven, an outdoor island, and more. Add tables and chairs, too, so you have somewhere to sit and eat. The point is to have a nice place to cook and eat outside when the weather is nice.
Your outdoor kitchen can be as large or larger than your regular inside kitchen. Just be mindful of your budget as outdoor kitchens can get expensive fast.
4. Create a pathway
A nice pathway is fairly inexpensive and easy to add to your backyard and it helps prevent damage from foot traffic.
The easiest way to create a footpath is to get some large flat stones and lay them along a common route in your backyard. Just make sure the ground is level wherever you place them (or have it leveled).
You can also make the pathway meander to give it some character. For example, You could have it go through the garden or along a pond or pool.
In addition, you might consider adding lanterns along the path for when it gets dark. That way, you can easily see where you’re going. The best pathway lanterns are solar-powered. They charge by the light of the sun so you never need to buy batteries for them.
5. Build a trellis
A trellis is a light wooden or metal framework that is used to support plants or fruit trees. For example, you can have vines wrap around them instead of having them crawl up the side of your house. Or you can use a trellis to help grow a vertical plant like grapes.
But trellises don’t only support plants. They can also be used as a decorative structure in and of themselves. For example, they make for a great accent or entrance to your backyard.
You can build a simple trellis fairly easily since it’s a light, open framework. Just make sure you have the right materials, tools, and help if needed.
6. Add a pergola
Another feature that can add some character to your backyard is a pergola. This is an outdoor structure that consists of four columns that support a roofing grid of beams and rafters.
The main purpose of a pergola is to provide an area of your backyard with some shade, which can be especially nice on hot summer days. But pergolas are also a great way to add some extra dimension to your backyard.
Unless you know how to woodwork, you may not want to build a pergola on your own, however. Instead, you may need to buy a completed pergola or hire someone to build it for you. Once assembled, be intentional about which way to face it in your backyard since it can be hard to move.
7. Install a fountain
To really make your backyard stand out, consider adding a fountain. A fountain can be a piece of art that adds life to the space by circulating flowing water.
Backyard fountains come in a large range of sizes, types, and prices. The installation itself typically costs over $1,000. So be sure to shop around and pick a fountain you love. This is a big investment that can’t be easily removed.
8. Hang some lights
If you enjoy spending summer nights outside, you may want to hang some lights in your backyard. Hanging outdoor string lights can light the space and give it a lot of charm.
Drape the lights above the deck or patio or along a trellis or pergola. Get creative with it and give the light string enough slack so that they dangle. You don’t want them to be pulled taut because it doesn’t look as good.
9. Add some outdoor furniture
Outdoor furniture is a must-have if you plan on spending any extended amount of time in your backyard. Tables, couches, chairs, pillows, and other furniture can go a long way in making the space more comfortable.
But your outdoor furniture doesn’t need to be fancy or expensive. If you’re on a tight budget, you can always reuse old furniture from inside or make your own outdoor furniture.
10. Build a birdhouse
For an easy and inexpensive backyard addition, make a birdhouse. Building a birdhouse can be a fun project to do with kids and lets you give back to nature by feeding the local birds in your area.
Having birds in your backyard from time to time will also make your backyard more vibrant. You’ll get to hear the birds sing and watch them as they fly by.
To take this to another level, you may even consider building a bird bath where birds can also wash themselves.
Making improvements to your backyard can be a fun and rewarding activity that you complete as you have time. Let some of these ideas stimulate your imagination so you can start working on your own project!