How Do I Start Landscaping My Backyard?

Transforming your outdoor space can be an exciting journey. In this article, we’ll guide you on how to start landscaping your backyard and turn it into an oasis of relaxation and beauty.

While working on your landscape project, you may also be interested in learning about how to make your backyard more private or installing a greenhouse for year-round gardening. Explore our articles and let your imagination soar as you create your dream backyard.

5 DIY Landscaping Tips on a Budget
Creating a plan is crucial for a successful landscaping project.
Don’t overlook the importance of proper soil preparation.
Use a variety of plants to add visual interest and texture to your backyard.
Incorporate hardscaping elements, such as pathways and seating areas, for functionality and style.
Regular maintenance is key to keeping your backyard looking its best.

Planning Your Landscape

Before you get started on your landscaping project, it’s important to identify your needs and wants. 

Are there any diseases or pests in the area that could affect the plants? What kind of budget do you have for this project? 

Is the house visible from a nearby road or trail? Do you want to focus on a single feature or create a more natural landscape that blends in with its surroundings. 

Jot down any thoughts here:

  • Needs:
  • Wants:

Now that you know what type of space you’re dealing with, it’s time to plan out your budget. 

In addition to materials and plants/species, consider hiring someone for help if needed (e.g., mowing services), as well as any costs associated with irrigation systems.

Transforming a small backyard into a beautiful oasis is easier than you think. Our guide on making your backyard more functional provides easy-to-follow tips and inspiration for maximizing the space in your outdoor area.

Consider Your Budget

One of the first things you should consider is how much your budget will allow. Having a realistic budget will help you stay on track and avoid overspending. 

Decide how much you can spend now and find ways to save money for later, such as by doing some landscaping yourself or by purchasing an item second-hand. 

Remember that it’s better to have a simple backyard with fewer features than to try and go big on your first project and end up disappointed when you realize that it’s too expensive for what it looks like.

If you don’t have a lot of money, start small! The smaller areas around your house may seem insignificant but they actually play an important role in creating an inviting outdoor space where people want to relax or hang out with friends and these areas are often neglected because they seem less important than the larger parts of the yard (such as the patio). 

A small change here will make all the difference in making sure everyone feels comfortable whenever they’re outside!

Common Hardscaping Elements for Backyard Landscaping

Patios and DecksWalkwaysRetaining WallsOutdoor Lighting
ConcretePaversBrickString lights
WoodFlagstoneStoneSolar lights
BrickMulchWoodPath lights

Identify Your Needs And Wants

Once you’ve decided that it’s time to start landscaping your backyard and have defined your needs and wants, the next step is to identify what opportunities are available to you.

What do you want to achieve?

You may be looking for a space where you can relax with friends or family, or maybe even just yourself. Maybe there are certain colors or textures that would make the perfect backdrop for an outdoor space. 

You might also really enjoy gardening (or hate it), so creating a garden in your backyard could be a good option. Whatever it is that motivates you, write down all of these things so that they’re clear in your mind when developing a plan.

Are you tired of dealing with a lackluster lawn? Learn how to install beautiful, low-maintenance turf with our step-by-step guide on putting down turf in your backyard. Say goodbye to grass stains and hello to a stunning outdoor space!

Choose A Focal Point (If You Want One)

If you want a focal point, consider adding one to your backyard. A focal point can be anything from a statue or water feature to an area where you can sit and relax. It might also be the place where you entertain guests.

For example, many people choose to have seating areas in their backyards so that they can enjoy time with family members on warm summer evenings. 

If this sounds like something that would appeal to you, consider creating an outdoor living space where everyone will have room for relaxation and conversation after a long day of work or play outside in the sun!

Make A List Of Materials And Plants You Need

Make a list of materials and plants you need. The first step to landscaping your backyard is to take stock of what you already have and then decide what else you need. 

Chances are, if the yard has been neglected for a while, it’ll need some serious attention before any landscaping can be done. Here are some things to consider:

  • Do I have enough soil? If not, how much do I need?
  • What kind of plants do I want in my garden? How many will each plant cost me?

How much time am I willing to invest into this project? If it’s going to take months or years before you see any results, perhaps it would be better to hire someone else who can get started right away (but keep reading!).

Landscaping your backyard doesn’t have to break the bank. Our do-it-yourself landscaping guide offers budget-friendly tips and tricks for transforming your outdoor space without hiring a professional. Get inspired and get started today!

Types of Plants for Backyard Landscaping

PetuniasBlack-eyed SusansBoxwoodMagnolia
ImpatiensDayliliesHydrangeaJapanese Maple

Plan Your Irrigation

Irrigation is an essential part of any landscaping project. You need to know what size irrigation system you need, and where it will go. There are many things to consider before selecting a watering system for your yard:

  • The size of the yard
  • The type of plants you are planting (trees, bushes, flowers)
  • The soil type in your yard, as this affects how much water plants need to survive and thrive
  • The climate where you live (hot, dry summers or rainy winters) *The time of year (are we talking summer? fall?) *How much water the plantings will require over time (*how much they currently use now) *How much money can be spent on installation

Create An Area For Outdoor Dining Or Activities

One of the first things you’ll want to do is create an area for outdoor dining or activities. You can create a fire pit, build a barbeque pit, add a table and chairs, or even install swings.

You may also want to consider adding plants and flowers around these areas so they look great when you’re not using them.

If you have any other questions about landscaping your yard, please feel free to contact us at [insert email address here].

Create An Area For Leisure And Relaxing

The second step is to create an area for leisure and relaxing. Choose a location that works well with the rest of your yard and create a space where the whole family can relax. 

If you want to get creative, this is also a good place to add some potted plants or other decorative items. 

A hammock makes for a nice addition if you have the room and like lounging outside reading or relaxing in your backyard (and who doesn’t?).

Layer For Color, Texture And Dimension

Layers are a great way to add interest, color and texture to your landscape. They also provide you with an opportunity to create different levels of privacy or shade in your yard. 

For example, if you’re looking for some nice tall trees that will grow to give shade over time, consider planting them near the back of your yard (and perhaps closer together) so they can grow up quickly. 

You might also want some shorter shrubs that add color and texture near the front of your lawn where they will be more visible.

If you’re looking for something that grows low and stays short throughout its lifetime, consider planting perennials like lavender or rosemary right at ground level around the perimeter of your property so they’ll be right there when people walk into view—this way no one can see over them!

Looking for ways to create a modern, stylish backyard? Our experts have compiled a list of pro tips for creating a modern backyard design that will elevate your outdoor space to the next level. From sleek furnishings to chic lighting, discover how to make your backyard a true showstopper.

Add Shrubs As Privacy Screens, Hedges And Other Functional Uses

You can even use shrubs to block off a view or hide an unsightly object. The best shrubs for this are evergreen varieties they’re good at providing year-round privacy and they also provide shelter from the wind. 

If you don’t have room for lots of trees, then consider adding some smaller ornamental trees to your landscape instead. 

Trees that grow quickly and need little maintenance make great additions to any backyard landscaping design scheme.

Add Perennials Or Annuals For Pops Of Color

If you want to invest in plants that will last longer, perennials are your best bet. These plants grow from one season to the next and can be left in the ground for years without needing replacements.

Annuals are a good option if you’re looking for something more temporary; they come back every year with new blooms that look just as vibrant as before.

Both types of plants can be easily replaced with new ones each year, so there’s no worry about an old perennial taking up space or an annual not surviving another winter.

Host your dream wedding or special event right in your own backyard! Our guide on making a wedding in your backyard offers practical tips and inspiration for creating a beautiful, memorable event that your guests will never forget. From decor to catering, we’ve got you covered.


You may have a vision of what you want in your backyard, but it can be overwhelming. The key is to start small and work your way up from there. 

Take your time, plan the project thoroughly and don’t forget about maintenance!

Further Reading

If you’re interested in learning more about backyard landscaping, check out these resources:

How Much Does it Cost to Fully Landscape a Backyard?: This article provides an in-depth look at the costs associated with landscaping a backyard, including materials, labor, and design.

How to Create a Modern Backyard: Pro Tips: Get inspired with this guide to creating a sleek and stylish backyard design. From choosing the right materials to incorporating technology, this article has everything you need to know.

Do-It-Yourself Backyard Landscaping Guide: If you’re looking to take on a backyard landscaping project yourself, this guide can help. It includes tips for designing, building, and maintaining your own backyard oasis.

What Can I Replace My Backyard Grass With?: Grass isn’t the only option for a lush backyard. This article explores a variety of alternatives, including groundcovers, native plants, and even artificial turf.

How Do You Make a Small Backyard Private? Easy Guide: Even if you have a small backyard, you can still create a private and relaxing space. This guide offers tips for adding privacy screens, landscaping, and other features.

How to Landscape a Backyard: Tips and Ideas: This article provides expert advice on landscaping a backyard, from selecting the right plants to creating a cohesive design.

Do-It-Yourself Landscaping Tips: This article offers practical tips for DIY backyard landscaping, including advice on plant selection, soil preparation, and maintenance.


Here are some frequently asked questions about backyard landscaping, along with relevant articles from Unified Garden and other sources:

Q: How do I start landscaping my backyard? A: Starting with a plan is key. Consider your budget, the amount of maintenance you’re willing to do, and what kind of features you want to include. You can also consult with a professional landscaper or use online resources to get ideas and inspiration.

Q: How much does it cost to fully landscape a backyard? A: The cost of landscaping a backyard can vary widely depending on factors such as the size of the space, the complexity of the design, and the materials used. However, you can expect to spend several thousand dollars on a complete backyard landscaping project.

Q: What can I replace my backyard grass with? A: Grass isn’t the only option for a lush backyard. Some popular alternatives include groundcovers like clover or thyme, native plants like wildflowers or succulents, and even artificial turf.

Q: How do you make a small backyard private? A: There are several ways to create privacy in a small backyard, such as installing a fence, planting tall hedges or trees, or adding privacy screens made of fabric, lattice, or other materials.

Q: What are some tips for landscaping a backyard? A: Some key tips for backyard landscaping include selecting the right plants for your climate and soil type, creating a focal point or design theme, and incorporating features like lighting or water elements.

Q: How can I make my backyard look nice for cheap? A: There are several budget-friendly ways to enhance the look of your backyard, such as using gravel or mulch instead of expensive pavers, repurposing old items like pallets or tires for planters or furniture, and shopping for plants or decor at discount retailers.

Q: What are some DIY landscaping tips? A: DIY landscaping can be a fun and rewarding project. Some tips for getting started include measuring your space, creating a detailed plan, and doing research on the plants and materials you’ll need.