help w/ my design . . needing ideas!!!! (pictures attached)

jdwinter14March 29, 2010

I just moved into a house with a boring backyard. It is very square and odd shaped. It has two parts to the backyard as my garage is a detached garage. I have a medium sized dog so keeping grass is a must. However, I need ideas to add some character and life to it! I have a small area of covered patio already (about 10 feet out from the back window). The second part of the backyard is to the right of the main part of backyard. This is the area that I am thinking about putting a stone patio with fireplace and cooking area. HELP!!!

I am thinking of a couple curved brick-lined flower beds, possibly a outdoor fireplace on the small side, outdoor built in grill, etc.

If anyone can come up with ideas of drawings, that would be great!

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Thanks for the message. I have bermuda grass, which is pretty tough, for the area for the dog. As for the flagstone or stamped concrete, would it look odd if my current covered patio is regular poured concrete and the other area is stamped concrete? (They would connect)

Thanks for advice!!!!

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 10:33AM
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karinl(BC Z8)

No reason at all why that should look odd, as long as you manage the transition in a graceful way. If, for example, there is a step down, or a threshold to make the transition a feature, then it looks natural.

As far as the dog is concerned, search around these forums and the internet for 'dogs' and 'grass' and see what you learn. Sounds like you have enough of a vision that you don't need that much help at all. The character that will be added is, after all, your own!


    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 6:32PM
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JD, your back yard is a dream to landscape because it is small, already fenced, and you have a few ideas of what you want.

If you get some graph paper that's ¼" = 1' you can easily draw a plan of your yard and make decisions. I'm sure there are programs on the net you could use but I still like pencil and paper for planning.

As a dog lover and dog owner for decades I strongly recommend an area which your dog uses as his. Gravel or mulch will work. Check out the types of gravel available in your area. You don't want sharp edges and I've found pea gravel tracks too easily. IMO it makes a much nicer yard for living if there is a clean area for people and a dog area where the dog does his business. Dogs will learn where to go and can still be with you in the 'people' area at other times. You could use hedging around this area altho we've usually fenced it.

In such a small space in your climate I'd do mostly perennial beds and mulched paths. Of course you could have a small area for veggies but could also put them in the perennial beds. In your zone I'd plant a tree ASAP for future shade.

How you design this area depends on how you want to use the space. With full sun in a hot climate I'd put up a sun-shade sail but if you want plants in full sun that might not work. And your HOA might not allow. Lots of choices for you to make - have fun! :-)

    Bookmark   March 30, 2010 at 9:26PM
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Thanks for the ideas! I am really at a point that I would like a couple things to start with and then I think the backyard will take off from there.

The real question is, in the smaller part of the backyard (side), should I put the paver/flagstone/stamped concrete section there or should I have it extend out from my covered patio and do some sort of circle patio or something?

    Bookmark   April 2, 2010 at 12:20PM
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