With good planning, design and construction, your backyard living space can become a multipurpose area for relaxing, entertaining and playing. In addition, custom backyard landscaping can add to the monetary value of your home. When tackling a backyard landscaping project, it's always best to start with a plan in mind, so spend some time gathering landscaping ideas and looking at photos before jumping into your own backyard overhaul.
Caladiums are one of the most popular plants in the South for creating beauty in difficult-to-grow-in shady places. Caladiums—a tropical plant native to America—have incredibly colored foliage that can have blotches of red, rose, pink, white, and more. Some of our favorite caladiums include ‘Pink Symphony,’ ‘Iceberg,’ ‘Miss Muffet,’ and ‘Candyland.’ To bring this beautiful plant into your landscaping plan easily, integrate planters into your hardscape. This poolside scene includes a trough-like container built right into the bank. Fill it with a colorful array of caladiums and you will have created your own personal poolside tropical oasis.
Hanging baskets follow the same recipe as containers as far as plant care goes. But instead of an upright thriller plant, you want more spillers and fillers—an upright thriller obviously won’t work as well. Calibrachoa in red, purple, and yellow can fill out fast with blooms that look like miniature petunias, so it makes a container overflow with interest quickly. It also covers the container, making the flowers, rather than the container itself, the center of attention. Consider planting calibrachoas by color, or mix them together, depending on your design plan and personal preference. Either way, your hanging baskets with be eye-grabbers.
Give small gardens a big boost of style by adding an oversize gate or arbor at one end to act as a focal point. It will draw the eye in and make the space seem larger. Here, a large-scale ornamental entry arbor gives this tiny side yard some visual heft. Plus, it supports a crown of climbing roses. White lilies in the center bed mirror the white roses and arbor.
Gardeners tend to have lots of landscaping ideas for plants and fewer for their hardscapes (nonplant materials). You can easily add a level of interest to your yard by incorporating a variety of materials. Here, the natural feel of lawn and cut flagstones makes for a delightful contrast against smooth Mexican beach pebbles and gravel. Note how the color of the flagstone mimics that of the beach pebbles and ties the two together; it's an example of using repetition.
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