Backyard Basics: Easy Tips for Transforming Your Outdoor Oasis

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Do you dream about creating a tranquil backyard retreat for your family, but don't know where to start? Want to take your backyard from boring to beautiful without spending a fortune? Here are a few easy and inexpensive tips for creating the perfect outdoor space that your family can live, play and relax in.

·      Hide eyesores
There are few things more relaxing than your own backyard. But if you’re like a lot of homeowners, it’s also a place where tools and junk can accumulate and distract from the beauty of the
landscape. Shield eyesores and tidy up your backyard by reducing clutter.  Wind up gardening hoses after every use; paint an unsightly storage shed to complement your house; and make sure your lawn is neatly manicured, landscaped and watered.

Something as simple as planting a tree or two can enhance your backyard setting, especially if it is an open space.  Choose a tree that will grow relatively fast and doesn’t require a lot of upkeep.  An attractive tree can bring life to your outdoor space, add privacy and provide an inviting shade on those hot summer days.

·      Create a focal point
Consider adding an eye-catching fountain, birdbath, bench or an attractive fire pit to your backyard as a great way to draw attention to a special feature in your landscape. Choose an object that matches the style of your home and scale of your backyard, and consider two if your lawn is large.

·      Add a garden
A simple flower or vegetable garden can add both beauty and functionality to your backyard. From sunflowers to rows of corn and tomatoes, a well-maintained garden will give your backyard life and color.  Embellish with stepping-stones, statues or other garden decor to personalize your space.  Even invite the family to help with upkeep, as growing your own vegetables can be a fun and rewarding summer activity.

·      Let there be light
Attractive lighting is a simple way to enhance your backyard and add ambience. Solar lights are relatively inexpensive and can define sidewalks, swimming pools, gardens and other prominent features in the yard at night. During the summer months, lighting can also create the perfect setting for outdoor parties and get-togethers.

With a little work, time and at a relatively low cost, you can transform your ordinary backyard into an inviting, outdoor paradise, all while adding value to a part of the home that is often overlooked. 

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