Inspiring Artscapes

16 Amazing Small Backyard Ideas

Published by Publié par Daphne Dubois on le Sep 23, 2021 10:00:00 AM

City living often goes hand-in-hand with smaller backyard spaces, but that doesn’t mean you need to hit a landscaping dead end. Everyone knows that good things can come in small packages – it’s all about knowing your options, and having a little creative boost to get the ball rolling.

Whether your backyard has a patio, a deck, or a grassy area, you can create a sense of grandeur in your small backyard with a few strategic additions here and there. Here's how! 

1. Hang some greenery

Primer_TechoBloc_Series2019_006_Diamond Residential_no-firepit (1)Featured product: Diamond paver 

Plants can make both indoor and outdoor areas feel infinitely more homey and thoughtfully decorated. If you have any kind of overhang or roof-type space, a few hanging planters with long, trailing greenery can give off exotic oasis vibes. You can find unique hanging planters on online marketplaces like Etsy, or at your local flower shop. 

2. Light up the night

2019-CA017-7626-F-1Featured product: Borealis patio slab and Borealis retaining wall

There’s a reason why every single bar and restaurant with a terrace or patio has soft, glowy string lights overhead! They’re great for creating an inviting and relaxing ambiance, especially when you’re entertaining a few guests into the night. You can either repurpose some Christmas lights you have around the house, or purchase lights with larger bulbs for that authentic resto-bar look.

3. Let it bloom

let-it-bloom_retaining-wall-blocks-Graphix-muret-01079_2438_PIFeatured product: Industria Polished patio slab

Even if a deck or patio takes up most of your garden space, planting a flower bed is one of the easiest small backyard ideas, and can typically be completed in a single weekend. Farmer’s markets are brimming with blooms that can add an incredible splash of color to your space, so you’ll have no shortage of options to choose from. You can even use garden edging to spruce up your flower bed’s perimeter!

4. Step into style

step-into-style_TechoBloc_Series2019_012_Travertina BorealisFeatured product: Travertina Raw and Borealis patio slabs

Not sure how to give your backyard a little more height? You’d be surprised at how much of a difference refreshing your stairs can make! If your backdoor is a few feet off the ground, consider a fresh take on your steps, using high-quality stone and concrete that can stand up to any and all weather. For added style, consider dressing up the floor! In fact, a unique pattern, such as the one seen above, can really make a small space stand out. Keep everything else in the space quiet and let the floor do the talking. 

5. Use your vertical space

vertical_F_2020-US066_DSC7586Featured product: Ocean Grande patio slab

When square footage is limited, it’s time to start building upward. It’s easy to repurpose a piece of wood trellis or lattice into a vertical space that stands nice and tall: choose a few plants, flowers, or herbs that thrive outdoors, and hook hanging pots into the gaps. Then, prop your trellis up against a wall and watch your upright garden come to life. A vertical space is a great way to make your small backyard feel grand!

6. Plant an herb garden

2019-CA024-7198Featured product: Travertina Raw patio slab  

It’s tough to grow fresh herbs inside, so if you’re lucky enough to have even a small outdoor space, don’t let it go to waste! If you don’t feel like digging up your yard, you can plant your herbs in terracotta pots or a wooden planter using regular gardening soil and place them in a nice sunny spot. If you’re a beginner, you can try out some easy-to-grow varieties like mint, chives, parsley, and cilantro.

7. Be an outdoor bookworm

bookworm_TechoBloc_Series2019_009_Dunes RocksFeatured product: Dunes patio slab  

Flipping through a book or magazine under the sun is one of life’s simplest pleasures. The good news is, it doesn’t take much to create an irresistible reading nook, even in a small backyard! Pick up a comfy outdoor lounge chair, or even a trendy hanging basket chair. Place a small side table next to the chair for coffee, tea, or snacks, and create a little shade with a tall plant or standing umbrella.

8. Take a seat

take-seat_TechoBloc_Series2019_007_Westmount Residential-BFeatured product: Westmount paver 

The easiest way to create an outdoor living area in a small backyard is with a convenient bistro set like this one, which you can fold up and store when it’s out of use. Something like this can also add a fun pop of color, acting as a décor focal point without dominating the entire yard. If you have a little more space to work with, consider adding a couple of extra chairs to the equation – the most important takeaway is to look for light, dainty furniture that won’t make the area feel cramped or crowded.

9. Go green

go-green_Techo-Bloc_Catalogue2018_009_Squadra_V02Featured product: Squadra paver 

Many balcony owners like to create a cozy vibe by lining their space with lush greenery for privacy, so why not lean into the size of your yard by creating a cozy perimeter of tall plants? The same principle applies to this small backyard idea: make your small area feel peaceful, private, and intentional by decorating the edges with plants, shrubs, and little trees.

10. Use every square foot

Primer_TechoBloc_Series2019_025_Squadra corner_6K (1)

Featured product: Squadra paver 

Is your side yard currently being used to house recycling bins, gardening tools, and an old bicycle? If you have a small backyard, don’t let a single square foot go to waste! Your side yard can be whatever you want it to be: an intimate dining area, a space to plant flowers … you name it. Have an unused corner of the house? Why not turn it into an outdoor shower? The possibilities are endless! 

11. Create texture

texture_Techo-Bloc_Catalogue2018_004_Blu GrandeFeatured product: Blu Grande Smooth and Aberdeen patio slab

If your yard is completely grassed over, adding a mini patio can break up the space and provide some interesting texture. For example, you can lay down a few patio slabs underneath your dining table and chairs, or give your garden a little edge (literally) with some decorative edging stones. The latter is especially helpful if you have an inground flower bed, since the stones can be used as a decorative border. Furthermore, when adding texture to a space, make sure you keep the color scheme monochromatic so as not to overwhelm the space. In fact, loud textures and loud colors can make a small exterior look even smaller. Make the texture the focal point and keep the rest simple, clean and monochromatic. 

12. Sneaky storage

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Featured product: Blu Grande Smooth patio slab

 

One of the most common small yard problems is finding somewhere to store odds and ends. Since decluttering a space is an excellent way to make it seem brighter and larger, smart storage solutions are a must for small backyards. A storage bench is a fantastic double duty option, as both a place for your small items to live and a space-conscious seating solution.

13. Create some shade

Travertina-Para-Raffinato
Featured product: Travertina Raw patio slab

 

Rooftops and balconies can be exposed to lots of sunlight. During hot summer days, a retractable awning or some sort of outdoor umbrella can help provide some much needed shade. Enjoy some time outdoors without catching a burn! This small addition to your small backyard is a game-changer. It allows you and your loved ones to enjoy your space at all times of the day.  

14. Create a host-worthy environment

Techo-Bloc_Catalogue2018_002_Travertina-Borealis_6K
Featured product: Travertina Raw and Borealis patio slabs

 

If you own a rooftop terrace or a balcony, you most likely overlook a stunning view. With that in mind, think of creating a host-worthy environment. If you have the space, think of installing an outdoor kitchen, outdoor dining and lounging area. If you have less space, a comfortable lounging area, with plush pillows will do. You can even add a fire feature at the center, to enjoy long nights by the fire. It can get cold on a rooftop, so why not allow you and your guests to stay warm. Create a comfortable, fun environment that allows you to benefit from your view!

15. Privacy is the best policy 

7-Entire Yard - West 2.1_FNL-2748-SarahKeenleyside-2
Featured product: Westmount paver

They key to a small backyard design is privacy. Creating your own personal oasis in your backyard. If you can, think of adding a vertical perimeter around your space for maximum privacy. Bamboo, for example is a great option, but any other natural material will do. You can also create a sense of privacy by adding surrounding bushes and trees along your property.  

16. Maximize space

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Featured product: Blu 60 Smooth patio slab

 

If you have a small backyard, what matters is maximizing your space. If you can, built-in seating is the best way to go, as it takes up the least amount of space. Throw some plush pillows and a small side table so you can enjoy your coffee while you watch the sun come up from your balcony.

 

Ready to start making the most of your garden with these small backyard ideas? Check out our Backyard Inspiration Book for even more inspo, or flip through one of our style guides to get the creative juices flowing.

 

GET THE INSPIRATION BOOK

Subjects:Sujets: BACKYARD PATIO, BACKYARD LIVING, PATIO IDEAS, BACKYARD IDEAS, OUTDOOR LIVING IDEAS, BACKYARD DESIGN, BACKYARD REMODEL, BACKYARD PROJECT, PROJECT IDEAS, BACKYARD LANDSCAPING IDEAS, PATIO DESIGNS, SMALL BACKYARD IDEAS

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