Can you give us ideas on designing our backyard?

BabbersApril 13, 2013

I attached a picture of our yard, which is all dirt! We were originally planning on putting in a large raised planter box along the back built out of wood and a wood retaining wall along the left side where there is a change in grade. We wanted to plant some Emerald Greens along the back in the planter box to give us some more privacy and to block the view of the neighbors yards. I would have a little garden on the retaining wall and then add grass to the rest of the yard with maybe a nice shade tree.

My problem is this, is a large wood planter box a good idea? Would it look strange if we just had the one retaining wall on the left of the yard and then planted our emerald greens straight into the ground along the back?

Is there a way for us to raise the ground along the backside of the fence without a planter box? Or is there a way for us to use stone instead of wood for better appeal? (The reason we chose wood was because it was cost effective and it gave us a way to contain the extra dirt without putting it up against the fence.)

Sorry for all the questions, we just want to get this done right the first time. Any suggestions and help is greatly appreciated.


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Oh and when our neighbors put in the fence they decided not to line up the side fence with the back we were hoping the emerald greens would hide that.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 3:04PM
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Usually, landscape projects cost enough on their own that there's no need to add unnecessaries which make them cost more, but add no particular advantage. A while later when those Emerald Greens (or any number of other plants) are completely screening the neighboring houses, one would wonder why was extra $ spent on raising the grade. And that's the question I pose now, why must the grade be raised? Plant material alone is perfectly capable of getting to the height that would screen the undesirable views. The large expense of raising the grade CREATES problems and saves only a year or two of waiting for plants to get taller. You have a basically normal looking back yard. The pitch is nothing out of the ordinary. Planting alone can accomplish all the screening that's needed. And a garden is no problem. Usually, they're not raised. They're just plots on flat or gently sloping ground. I do not understand why you think the grade must be raised or that doing so provides some great advantage. The way I see it, it adds unnecessary cost and complications you'd be better off without.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 9:36PM
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If you need topography for artistic purposes, a berm might be a better option.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 10:41AM
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