Understanding How To Plan Your Backyard Landscape

Understanding How To Plan Your Backyard Landscape

Designing your backyard space is a time full of ideas, creativity, and excitement for your new outdoor environment.  Narrowing down your ideas into a focused plan that fits into your space can be challenging, especially when space and budget limitations are factored in.  That’s why contacting backyard designers near you is essential before installing the landscape.  The first major question to ask is, “How do you want to use the space?”

This seems obvious but saying it out loud and discussing what that means helps you understand your priorities. Sometimes having one priority means other items need to be included to make it work which could open more opportunities or limit others. Installing a planting area might require irrigation that needs to run under your pathways or patios which requires a carefully thought-out process to get the job done correctly. When speaking with your landscape designer in Sonoma County they will be able to inform you of how one choice might impact another and the best strategy or organize the installation of each element.

Here’s a list of questions we frequently ask:

Do you plan to have dinner parties or host social gatherings?  Then a level and easily accessible patio space, outdoor lighting, pathways leading from the main exit, and entry points to the house and backyard will need to be included.  If there will be multiple entertainment areas such as a dining patio and fire pit area, we will consider how they are connected, if they are the same material, and if not how to pick materials that complement each other and the rest of the landscape while remaining functional and within the budget.

Do you have kids or a dog and intend to play games? In that case, you need open uninterrupted level space, either in the form of a lawn, artificial turf, mulch, or soft surface that can handle lots of wear and tear while also providing a safe play area.  This means no fragile plants in the area and no hard abrupt angles or obstacles to get injured upon if someone falls.

Large blue pool surrounded by green grass and grey stone

Do you want a swimming pool?  If you plan to put loungers by the pool, then patio areas need to be wide enough to accommodate your furniture. Patio space and likely all pathways linking the house and pool need to be barefoot-friendly material.  Landscape lighting is also a great idea to help people see the pool when moving around at night, both for safety and entertainment.

Do you want vegetables? Then you should prioritize the sunniest part of the backyard for your vegetable planters as most vegetables will perform best when in full sun conditions.  You’ll also need to plan for enough room to work around the beds with tools such as a wheelbarrow or bucket of soil.   This could mean a formal pathway or even mulch, but it’s important not to cramp the beds with tall trees or shrubs that block the sun or make it hard to work in the beds.  We recommend keeping the beds as close to the house as possible as it will increase the chances you’ll walk out to harvest veggies more often!

Green leaves, orange and purple flowers and blue sky

Do you want flowers, butterflies, hummingbirds, and pollinators?  For vibrant flower gardens that attract butterflies and pollinators, we must dedicate enough planting space to make it attractive to these garden friends.  Bigger groupings of a few types of key plants is more attractive than a wide diversity of single specimens as the pollinators don’t have to work as hard to find their meal.

As Healdsburg Landscapers Inspired Landscapes possess a wealth of experience as backyard designers installing and maintaining a wide range of backyard environments from small patios to multi-acre estates.  Whether you want to clear space to have drinks with friends, play with your kids, or want to begin a journey in producing your own food, we know all the ins and outs of the process and how to organize a space that accommodates as many of your priorities as possible. Give us a call or fill out a contact form today!