No matter the size of your yard, with proper landscape design, you can create an inviting and beautiful outdoor living space. We asked our designers for their tips on creating a relaxing, intimate, landscape in a small space. Read on to find our tips on landscaping for small spaces.
Create a Functional Space
The first process in landscaping any yard, no matter the size, is defining the function of the space. You must figure out what you will be doing with your space before you decide how to landscape it. Some examples of function are: using your back yard as an outdoor dining area, using your paved porch patio as a relaxation space/sitting room, or adding a fire pit for backyard Friday night s’more parties. Once you decide on your small space’s function, you can plan on adding other features like water features, pathways, and plant material.
Creating Focal Points in Your Small Space
Focal points will help guide the viewer’s eyes throughout the landscaped space. Focal points can be large boulders, an ornamental tree, a plant bed or flower pot, or a main gathering area like a patio or a water feature. Make sure you pick minimal focal points because too many focal points will make the space look small and cluttered. We recommend connecting different areas of your yard using foot paths. There are several different materials that can be used to accomplish this, but it also depends on aesthetics and budget as to what materials you should pick. Foot paths will define a clear sense of movement through your yard.
Plant Selection and Layout
A well-planned landscape is all about getting the right plants in the right places. You will want to select smaller varieties of plants and trees that won’t outgrow the space when they are mature.
A few examples are:
• Perennials like dwarf daylilies, dianthus, creeping phlox or aster.
• Small tree species like toba hawthorne, golden raintree, hot wings maple or blue totem spruce.
• Dwarf shrubs like little princess spirea, dwarf boxwood, crimson pygmy barberry or dwarf broom.
Proper layout of plants and trees is important in a small space. In a smaller space, planting vertically will encourage the eye to take height into consideration when viewing the yard and will make it feel more spacious. Planting in a tiered planter can help accomplish this, as will using plants of varying height to create layers of visual interest. Taller plants should be planted in the back with medium plants in the middle and shorter plants in the front. Be sure you plant strategically; if the outside perimeter is lined with tall plants it could make the space feel smaller and claustrophobic.
Using Bold Colors in Your Small Space
Adding pops of bold colors using outdoor furniture or bright blooming flowers can help tie a space together. Try to stick with 2-3 colors and then design the yard with the same cohesive color scheme. Too many bold colors would be distracting and will disrupt the visual flow through your yard.
Landscaping a small space is a fine balance between breaking up the space and creating a visual flow throughout the yard. Keeping your yard free of clutter and well maintained will help make the small space feel and look larger. If you want to take the guess work out of designing and landscaping your small space, contact our talented landscape designers today to set up a consultation.