Rectangle Backyard design help!

loadedlongboardApril 22, 2014

Hi Guys! New to the forum and basically new to landscaping/backyard designing. I am purchasing a new house (fixer upper) and would LOVE some help on the basic design of the backyard. This needs to be as cheap as possible but make it look as nice as possible (of course!). No concrete pouring or any professional, just things I can do myself.

I am thinking of doing edging with mulch on both sides of the yard, but not sure if I should have a second seating area further down the yard? (there is already one when you first enter the backyard). I attached a picture of the backyard along with a rough sketch of what I have.

My plan is to use a dark mulch in those areas and plant various small trees/shrubs so it looks fresh but its less work and looks really clean. I'm just unsure of the design of the edging and how far to come in and how much "wavy" lines I should use in the design.

Any input is appreciated! Thank you.

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Here is second image.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2014 at 10:16AM
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Sketch of what I was thinking. Thanks!

    Bookmark   April 22, 2014 at 10:17AM
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The trouble with your pictures is that they look unrelated. There's no way to tell how the 2nd picture fits with the first. And the plan doesn't help because the arbor business does not show up there either.

Guessing, I'd think you'd want the grass shape almost opposite of what you're proposing. I'm thinking it would look better if the grass were fatter at its central area -- like oval or similar -- rather than pinch-waisted. Is the line of squares, stepping stones? Why duplicate a path that the grass could serve just as well?

You'd be doing yourself a favor if you make any edging flush with grade and at least 8" wide. The usually stuff people do detracts rather than adds.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2014 at 9:20PM
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jkom51(Z9 CA/Sunset 17)

Are you flipping this house, and therefore looking for something attractive and quick? Or is this a 'keeper', where you are constrained by budget but can invest the time?

I agree, the photos aren't in relation to one another. I have no idea what area the second photo is showing, or what direction it's facing.

Basic questions:
1) This being CA and a drought situation, what's your water requirements?
2) What's your Sunset zone, which is much more useful than the USDA zone?
3) How much sun, and how many hours of the day?
4) What is the expected usage of this space? Decorative? A BBQ grill and seating somewhere? A place for kids to play?

If you want free advice, specifics are essential.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 1:49PM
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Suzi AKA DesertDance

I see pavers under the pergola, so I assume the paver area in your sketch is where the pergola is. That's a nice pergola and if you clean up all the junk, it could be beautiful with a nice table and chairs. You could hang lanterns for lighting, and even put a fire pit in there for cool evenings.

I agree that a more oval lawn would look nice.

Please answer the basic questions in the post above. It will help us help you.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 2:43PM
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