Break the Mold with Your Backyard, Not the Bank!

When it comes to landscaping your backyard, it’s important to keep one thing in mind-- be creative. There is no right or wrong way to do things when decorating or landscaping your backyard, so do what you like and make it your own. Obviously all safety precautions need to be taken when landscaping, but safety aside, have fun with it-- it’s your backyard.

Outdoor living is a big part of the Idaho culture. So, when landscaping your yard, consider adding a patio or deck if you don’t already have one. Back patios and decks come in various shapes and sizes. For instance, they can easily made of bricks, flagstone, wood, and even cement or concrete, so there are plenty of options of what material to use.

Another part of building a patio is the decision of whether or not to install an awning or other sort of shaded covering. Again there are many options as far as building materials go. Awnings can be made of wood, weather resistant fabric, or even vinyl slats. They can be made to extend and retract at the push of a button and they can even have mist sprayers attached to help cool down you and your guests during the summer months.

Paths can also be an important part of backyard landscaping. Though not necessary for every yard, paths can protect the rest of your yard from being trodden down by people walking through it. Paths can be made of virtually any material. They can be made of brick, cement or concrete, flagstone, bark, gravel, wood planks, etc. What material to use is largely dictated by your budget and style. Paths can help to separate parts of the yard, add color, and draw the eye to different parts or features of the yard.

Seating is another vital part of outdoor living and the options for seating are just as diverse as the choices for patios and awnings. The most common backyard seating furniture would have to be the lawn chair. These can be made of vinyl, metal, or wood, however, there are many other options for seating that can be quite unique. Benches are a popular way to provide seating for backyard visitors and they can be made in many different ways-- long, heavy wooden planks; cement; metal; and even railroad ties. However, no matter what you make it out of, a bench can offer a cosy outdoor experience for you and your visitors. Stumps or boulders can also be used for seating. Depending on the style of the rest of the yard, stumps and boulders offer a quick, easy, and aesthetically pleasing alternative to conventional backyard seating.

As far as backyard center pieces are concerned fire pits and water features are great prospect. There are thousands of inexpensive ways to make an effective and stylish fire pit to warm you up on those chilly evenings. Whether it is made from stone, cement, or metal, a fire pit can really make for an inviting backyard accessory.

Water features can be an effective way to create a relaxing atmosphere in a backyard. It doesn't have to be an expensive garden or wall fountain, just something to incorporate the soothing sound and sight of water. Ponds and small waterfalls can be an inexpensive way to add some serenity. A koi pond, minus the fish, can cost as little as $100 -$150 dollars if not cheaper, and a waterfall can be made just as inexpensively.

Lighting can be another crucial aspect of your backyard decorating. Simple porch lights can work wonders for seeing at night, but can be terrible at setting a calm and relaxed mood. There are many string lights (like holiday lights) that can be affixed outside all year long without fear of damage and they do a great job of adding simple light to a backyard get together. Tiki torches or simple garden lights are also effective for marking paths and adding some aesthetic appeal.

Gardens are not only a great way to make your yard look more healthy, but it can also be a productive way to save money as well. Even a small garden with only a few vegetables can make a yard seem more green and alive, while saving you some green too. There are several different options when it comes to building a garden. Firstly there is the traditional in ground garden where a section of the yard is dug up, tilled, fertilized and then planted in. This can be great if the soil in your area is healthy and fertile. However, if you prefer, above ground box gardens are also charming and productive. These can be made from wooden boxes or even concrete blocks. They are elevated above the ground and are filled with the soil of your choice, so no matter what kind of dirt you have in your backyard, you can still grow a few crops.

There are many more things that can be done with a backyard. So, whether you are moving into a new home, or just revamping your old yard, try out different ideas and search the web until you find something that works for you.

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