It’s still summer, which means it’s still time for barbecues, backyard parties, and outdoor playtime. This time of the year, we get to enjoy our yards more than any other. Spending time outside has lots of perks: extra doses of vitamin D, lower stress levels, and plenty of opportunities to be active.
Your yard is an extension of your home, and making sure it’s clean and beautiful is just as much a part of housekeeping as the work you do inside the home. Whether your yard is large or small, deciding how to decorate and use your space can be a challenge. Check out these tips for making the most of your yard and garden:
Small Yards (Under 1,000 Square Ft.)
Owners of small yards, rejoice! Your yard lends itself well to one of the most popular trends in landscaping this year — hygge. This Danish word describes a sense of comfortable coziness and familiarity, which your small yard is great for creating. Small yards can bring all the perks of bigger outdoor spaces with the right planning and a little creativity.
Try using smaller-sized furniture if you’re low on space in your yard. Avoid having too many decorative items that don’t serve any other purpose, as these create clutter and make you feel cramped.
One way to utilize your space effectively is to consider your vertical spaces. Walls and fences can be great spots for small gardens or climbing plants that will add beauty and dimension to your space. Window boxes are also a great way to add some colorful flowers or foliage.
The best tip for owners of small yards is to be deliberate and intentional with what you add to your yard. When considering adding something, ask yourself if the new piece will serve a purpose. If it can serve more than one, even better! Think along the lines of benches that can double as tables, or a garden hutch that can hold tools and act as a home for potted plants.
Medium Yards (1,000 to 5,000 Square Ft.)
Medium yards give owners lots of flexibility. They’re not so large that it’s a challenge to keep them in order, but they also give you plenty of space for outdoor fun.
Medium-sized areas can be made to look either cozy or open, depending on how you choose to decorate. Trees or fences can enclose the space and make it feel more private. Well-maintained hedges or bushes add privacy while also keeping the space clear of obstruction, and they can be easier to care for than larger trees.
Patios are also great options for those of us who love to entertain. A well-designed patio will give you many opportunities to use your outdoor spaces. They can be a new spot for dinnertime, a place to enjoy a good book, or a place to gather friends around a fire pit.
If you’d like a garden, raised beds are great solutions for medium yards. They allow you to enjoy the benefits of fresh veggies straight from your yard on a smaller scale than traditional in-ground gardens. Gardens also can be a great teaching opportunity for kids!
If you own a medium-sized yard, you’ve got lots of options to adjust it according to your family’s needs. Whatever you do, make sure it helps you make the most of your space!
Large Yards (5,000 Square Ft. and Above)
Large yards are great! They give kids a fun, safe place to play outside, and ensure you’ve got a venue for parties of any occasion. Large yards can play many roles in the summer: poolside oases, homes for man caves, or bountiful gardens. Some consideration and planning will help you make the most of your spacious yard.
One issue that owners of many large yard encounter is a lack of privacy. That might seem ironic, but large yards often become invitations for unwanted foot traffic, garbage from passing pedestrians or cars, and discourteous pet owner’s potty spots. Fences and hedges are the best bet to protect against uninvited visitors.
If your large yard has a shed, or you’re thinking about building one, there are lots of options for utilizing that space. Keeping your shed clean and well decorated is a great way to make sure it doesn’t fall into disorganization, and sheds can be great spaces to relax or entertain during colder months, especially if paired with a nearby outdoor fireplace.
Choosing the best plants for your large yard can be a little tricky. Small plants don’t always do favors for large spaces — they can make them look bare and poorly planned. Mass plantings are an easy way to bring in the plants you love and fill in empty spaces. You’ve got plenty of options for a garden in a large yard, and large yards also give you lots of space for composting.
No matter the size of your yard, it can be a great place to spend time with friends and family. There’s nothing like enjoying a cup of coffee on your patio on a warm summer morning, or spending the evening catching fireflies with your little ones. Our yards help us connect to nature, give us an outlet for our creative energies, and make our home look bright and beautiful. How will you use your yard this summer?
How will you use your yard this summer?