Just because you have a narrow side yard doesn’t mean it can’t be beautiful. The side of your home is often the best place for gardens or walking paths because they get the most sunlight and warmth in the summertime. This creates an ideal space for plants to thrive.
Start by looking at your side yard with fresh eyes. Imagine the space completely free of whatever is currently there. Whether it’s a dumping ground, an empty eyesore or a weeds paradise, clear that image out of your mind and think about what you’d like in that space. Do you wish you had more outdoor seating? A spot for vegetables? A water feature? A convenient walking path? A place for fun?
You might be surprised at how much you can do with this small area of your yard.
#1: Stunning Side Yard
The side of your home is the perfect place for a landscaping design that crawls up the side of your house. Just because it’s a small space doesn’t mean you have to think small. Go overboard with lots of flowers, flowering shrubs, and assorted plants. As long as you keep them trimmed, this is one of the best ways to maximize your space.
#2. Simple and Straightforward
Not everyone wants to tend to gardens filled with plants that require trimming, weeding and upkeep. A simple path is maintenance free, and also functional as a side access point. The Riverwalk and large pavers creates a beautiful sleek design. This can also help to keep the water away from the foundation of your home.
#3. Pretty and Curvy
Sometimes you can create a beautiful low-maintenance area by simply adding curves in all the right places. This path idea uses color to create a stunning visual interest curved all the way down the side of the house, with small garden plants at each indent. The use of a few small shrubs adds a touch of color and keeps the area very environmentally friendly.
#4. Geometry at Work
Think outside the box by switching your pavers aroud and creating a whole new look. Potted plants are an easy way to add color along the way. Hanging window boxes, tall pots, and some planted directly in the ground give various levels of interest with a beautiful trellis entrance at one end
#5. Have a Seat
If your side yard is mostly shaded, it’s a great spot for an outdoor seating area. Chairs don’t need a ton of room, and you can create a beautiful space with large pavers and simple lighting. Add a few cocktails and you have a wonderfully relaxing space for your family and friends.
#6. Best of Both Worlds
You can create the best of both worlds with beautiful greenery and a few chairs for visitors. Use curves in your garden path to maximize space, and use plants that grow vertically to create lots of greenery without taking over.
#7. Troughs Make Great Friends
Of course livestock troughs are generally not meant to hold anything but water, but they are so much more versatile than that. All you have to do is drill a few holes in the bottom and then line the bottom with a layer of rocks. Almost instantly you have an amazing foundation for a thriving garden. Troughs work great for narrow spaces and they are a great place to grow edibles such as lettuce, cucumbers, and herbs.
#8. Just a Pop of Color
You can make the most of a rockway by adding a pop of color. When you have only limited garden space to work you can still create a a nice section of ground between your home and the fence or between you and the house next door by using rocks. This naturally cut down on weeding and maintenance and are still conducive to beautiful ground plants.
#9. Slide on Down
If you have kids and your side yard slopes at all, this one is a no-brainer. Creating a slide gives your side yard purpose and instantly propels you into having the coolest yard on the block. Cover the space with a plastic tarp, add a hose and you’re in business. Go the extra mile with making archways with PVC and running sprinkler line to make it an epic summer.
#10. Artist’s Corner
Kids don’t need a lot of space to have a great time. A narrow side yard is the perfect place to create an artist’s corner with chalk. Chalk is a great medium to use outside because it washes off easily with water, and doesn’t take up a lot of space. Make your own with a large piece of plywood (or paint the fence itself) with chalkboard paint. Once the paint dries, let the kids go wild with their imagination.
Make your outdoor space work for you. If you love to have fun, create an outdoor bowling alley that is fun for both kids and adults. It’s easier than you think and provides a great backyard barbeque activity.
#12. Use the Fence
Just because you’re close to the fence doesn’t mean you’re closed in. Use what you have by using the fence as a backdrop for hanging plants. The vertical placement draws the eyes up, creating the illusion of more space. They’ll get plenty of sun and provide you with a beautiful nature walk between the front and back of the house.
#13. Go for Zen
A xeriscape option for side yards can be a beautiful and relaxing retreat. Use a variety of elements including earthy stones, fire, and maybe even a small table-top water feature for tranquility. Add a few chairs and you have a spa-like oasis in your very own backyard.
By thinking about what works for you and your family, you will find even a narrow side yard or a plan pathways can be simple to care for yet still incredibly beautiful and relaxing. Use it strategically to create privacy, add in a bench to enjoy your garden, enjoy a nature walkway, make a nook for special potted plants or create customized fun for your entire family.
When it comes to landscaping the side of a house, variety is truly the spice of life. Small spaces don’t mean small ideas. The only things that are likely to limit what you do to improve the side of your home are your imagination and your budget.