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Your Green Escape: 13 Unique Backyard Garden Ideas

You want a garden in your backyard, but you’re unsure how to go about it. Or you probably already have a garden back there but want to give it a better look. If you’re looking for ideas to create a stunning backyard garden, you’ve come to the right place!

Keep reading to learn about various backyard garden ideas that will have you spending more time outside than in!

Using recycled items like an old purse and shoes for backyard garden ideas

Creative Backyard Garden Ideas

Your garden doesn’t have to be just generic flower or plant beds or rows of pots on a deck or patio. With these features, you can create a stunning, personalized backyard garden by looking into unique gardening ideas.

1. Spilled Flower Planters

Who says pots, baskets, or urns must be upright to grow beautiful and fragrant flowers? This backyard garden idea is proof that not all spills are disastrous. In fact, it may produce a more gratifying effect as you sit or work in your backyard!

By laying a wheelbarrow on its side, you can plant flowers as if they’re flowing like water. Another option is to partially bury these planters in the soil to prevent them from shifting while the flowers grow.

Plant blue and white flowers in a rippled pattern to create the effect of water spilling from the planter. For a non-tear-jerking milk spill, take a vintage milk can and plant white blooms in a flowing manner. Whatever flowers and planters you have, spill your garden!

2. Patterned Flower Beds

Flower beds are always beautiful additions to add to your garden. One color or type of flower is good to plant but isn’t really a unique thing. What if you went a little further and planted different colored flowers together?

A flower-patterned idea for your backyard garden takes some planning. Wherever your flower beds are located, your flowers’ sunlight preferences should be considered.

Pattern ideas you can try out include one color at the front of a bed and another at the back. Or, if your flower bed is big enough, you could arrange the flowers into a swirling pattern.

3. Appliance Container Garden

Like plants, the containers from where they grow have creative potential that impresses onlookers! Do you have certain appliances with containment purposes that you’re not using or haven’t had time to deal with? Try this upcycling idea for your backyard garden!

Upcycling is the process of converting materials into new ones with greater or different functions. For example, you may have a broken or unused wheelbarrow or birdbath. Instead of pitching or donating them, turn them into container gardens.

A wheelbarrow is deep enough to hold dozens of blooms and hanging flowers or succulent plants. You can do the same thing with a birdbath. Depending on your flower, plant, and color scheme preferences, you can grow whatever you want from these containers.

4. Old, Worn Items as Upcycled Planters

This backyard garden idea is similar to our last one but involves items people throw away by default. Upcycling in this area means you’re being resourceful if you’ve run out of pots and baskets. It’s also a great way to keep your trash barrel from overflowing.

A lawn chair is one example of an old, worn planter you can upcycle. If there’s a gaping hole in the seat, simply remove what’s left and insert a planter in the gap. Check to see that the planter will fit inside, and paint the chair as desired to match the plant’s color scheme.

Flowers planted in pairs of old boots

Do you have boots you’re throwing out because you’ve outgrown or worn them down? They may have reached their peak, but they can still be useful for growing plants. Depending on the type of planters you save and upcycle, you could create a theme with them!

Decorative Backyard Garden Ideas

If you feel that your backyard lacks something unique or ornamental, look at these ideas for additional appeal.

5. Garden Pond or Waterfall Fountain

The nice thing about installing a water-based feature in your garden is that you’re not just creating a scenic backyard. You’re also providing the wildlife with a water source, expanding your wildlife viewing.

Installing a garden pond takes a lot of work and planning—money, too, if you hire someone. As for a waterfall, you can easily purchase a waterfall fountain and set it wherever you desire in your yard. Building one into the pond is an option, but it may be more expensive.

The sound of cascading water is the best backyard garden idea for a relaxing ambiance while working or hanging around outside!

6. Flower-Draped Pergola or Arbor

A DIY or purchased pergola is a good cover for your sitting area outside. The same goes for an arbor as a decorative arch to your garden path or an entryway into your backyard.

However, the bareness of these structures may make them seem dull at first sight compared to your garden. You can remedy this by planting flowering vines and climbing plants near them and training them to climb the sides.

One example of a climbing vine for your pergola or arbor is the chocolate vine. Let the vanilla-like fragrance be a welcome scent as you go outside.

Bottlehouse gourds hanging from a pergola

You can also plant vining vegetables and gourds, like a birdhouse bottle gourd.

Not only is this a decorative idea for your backyard garden, but it’s also a relieving one. That’s because the flowers and vines will cover up the pergola or arbor enough to provide shade. You won’t have to let hot days hinder you from lounging outside and enjoying your garden.

7. Garden Path

Lead your guests to your garden in an inviting way with this backyard garden idea! You can start it out from your patio or deck and trail it anywhere in your backyard, right through your garden.

If you’re using stepping stones, paint them for a colorful pathway if they have a smooth, blank surface. Other choices include pebbles, mosaics, and decorative stepping stones.

An easy garden path for you to build is a gravel one. If it hits a brief incline in your yard, add timber and stone on the path to act as stairs. You’d have to weed the path monthly and top-dress it with new gravel every few years, but it’s affordable!

Protective Backyard Garden Ideas

A backyard garden is worth protecting from excessive elements and anybody roaming around the yard who may accidentally trample the plants.

Let’s go over a few ideas for setting up your backyard garden to avoid compromising your plants’ growth.

8. Raised Garden Beds

Trampled or overwatered plants are the last thing you want, but those are the risks of growing plants in flat beds. Instead of planting seeds in the ground, plant them in framed, raised garden beds. You can purchase them or build them yourself.

With extra elevation for your herbs, crops, or flowers, these boxed beds will prevent a lawn mower from nicking the plants. Overwatering and heavy rains won’t be an issue for these plants either. Thanks to the drainage holes that drain the water as needed.

9. Rock Borders

Mulch and raised beds aren’t the only backyard garden ideas for separating plants from lawns. Landscaping rocks also make good borders for your plants.

With a rock border, it’s easy to tell how close you can get to your plants without accidentally running over them with the mower or stepping on them. How thick you want the border is up to you, but we recommend measuring it at least 5–6 inches.

The benefit of this backyard gardening idea is that the landscaping fabric underneath the rocks prevents weed growth. It lessens the maintenance needed for your rock border and keeps the rocks from sinking into the soil.

10. Cold-Frame Garden Beds

Greenhouses are a good backyard garden idea, but they can be expensive and time-consuming to build yourself. You’d also have to consider how big you want your greenhouse to be and how many plants will fit inside.

Cold frame garden beds

If you have certain crops, herbs, or flowers you want to keep warm when cold weather hits, start small. Cold-frame garden beds are mini-greenhouses that function similarly to greenhouses. Though cold frames build up heat, the temperature is cooler than in a regular greenhouse.

This idea for your backyard garden is good for long-season crops you can overwinter for a spring harvest. It’s also good for starting the growing process early for cold-tolerant plants.

Space-Saving Backyard Garden Ideas

Do you have a small space for a backyard? Or do you want to leave more room for other backyard gardening ideas to try out later? Consider some of these fun, space-saving ideas for your backyard garden:

11. Window Box Planters

These planters will adorn your windows and save space for your garden beds, patio, or backyard. You can install them on your house windows or even your shed windows. The latter option could also add more appeal to your shed, not just leave extra space.

Petunias are an example that’s perfect for your window planters. On a hot summer day with the sun shining in your backyard garden, petunias can endure the hottest season.

Another plant you can adorn your window sill with is impatiens. These flowers are easy to maintain and perfect for growing in containers. Better yet, they come in many colors you can plant in the window box!

12. Vertical Gardens

There are many vertical gardening systems you can employ in your backyard. People usually hang pots or baskets on a fence or suspend them from ceilings or pergolas. But what if you don’t have a general hanging surface like a fence, pergola, or ceiling over your deck or patio?

Different examples of vertical garden ideas

Think outside the box with this idea for your backyard garden. Besides a fence, other hanging surfaces you can employ are framed chicken wire or pallets. Try the same thing with pots or baskets to make your vertical garden more interesting.

Do you own old rainboots you replaced some time ago or mason jars you’re not drinking from? Fill them with soil, plant the seeds, and hang them on your choice surface. Or if you have a cloth shoe organizer that’s not holding shoes, hang it up and turn the pockets into planters!

13. Companion Plant Beds

Creating separate garden beds for flowers, herbs, or vegetables will take up a lot of space in your backyard. Consider companion planting as a wonderful backyard garden idea for growing your desired plants without making more beds!

By pairing each crop, herb, and flower with another crop, herb, and flower, you’re not only diversifying your backyard garden. You’re also providing your plants additional nutrition, improving their taste, and safeguarding them against pests.

Take note that there are certain crops, herbs, and flowers that you shouldn’t plant together. Pairing up the wrong plants will result in low-quality or ruined plants. Research what you plan to grow before planting.

Personalize Your Beautiful Backyard Garden!

With these backyard garden ideas, you’ll have plenty of creative ways to make your garden your own. Let it bring you outside more and expand your imagination of what else you can do with your garden!

Visit our backyard living page for more inspiring ways to create your perfect backyard!

Gary Brunkow

Tuesday 1st of August 2023

Is there a better time if day to spray apple trees? i.e. Does spraying apple trees in the middle of a hot day damage the leaves?


Tuesday 1st of August 2023

Yeah; avoid Spraying During Extreme Heat. Spraying in the middle of a hot day can indeed damage the leaves. Many chemicals can cause leaf burn or even volatilize and drift onto other plants when temperatures are very high. This is especially true when the temperature is above 85°F.

Early Morning or Late Afternoon/Evening is the ideal time to spray apple trees when the temperatures are cooler, and the wind is calm. This minimizes potential damage to the leaves and ensures that the chemicals stay on the target plants.