1,001 Backyard Ideas for 2018 (Decks, Gardens, Pools & More)

- Advertisement -

Backyard ideas image

Recent Articles and Galleries

All Backyard Ideas for Your Home

Welcome to our backyard ideas page where we feature access hundreds of outdoor living spaces including decks, patios, balconies, porches, verandas, swimming pools, outdoor kitchens, gardens, plants, flowers, gazebos and other structures and more.

To date we've nearly covered everything imaginable for backyards and landscaping, but we'll likely come up with more so be sure to check back regularly.

1. Plant, Flower, Cacti and Shrub Database

One of our greatest backyard gardening features is our massive plant, flower, cacti and shrub database with well over 1,000 entries and is totally searchable.

You can search via perennials, annuals, sun and water requirements, hardiness zones, soil pH and much, much more.

The database or garden directory includes a photo of each flower or plant and in most cases a tutorial video along with all the key information.  

If you're planning a garden, our garden directory/database is a must-visit feature.

2. Deck Designs

Large wooden deck surrounded by trees.Save

We have a spectacular deck designs photo gallery featuring hundreds of different deck designs. 

Various features you can drill down your search for include size (small, medium, or large), flowers, railings, covered or uncovered, pergola, privacy screen and/or stairs.

If you’re looking for deck ideas, our deck gallery is a great resource.

3. Patio Ideas

Sometimes it's not easy choosing between a deck and patio and sometimes you don't have a choice.

A patio is only a viable option if you can build it flush on the ground.  If it needs elevating, you go with a deck.

Patios can more easily blend into the surrounding landscape of your hard.  You can use materials that further blend or stick out to create more contrast.  You have many options for patio materials such as brick, flagstone, cobblestone, tile and more as well as many colors, shapes, textures and design options.  

Planning and designing a patio is a great task.  Get inspired from our more than 500 patio designs

4. Backyard Swimming Pools

Without tooting my own horn, our swimming pools gallery is one of the best on the web.  We showcase almost 1,000 swimming pool designs in all shapes, sizes, blues and features.

If you’re considering getting a pool built, our gallery is a must-see page because you will definitely get some great ideas.

5. Outdoor Kitchen Ideas

For people who spend a lot time outside, an outdoor kitchen may well be the answer. 

Yes, you can get a grill, but when it comes to outdoor kitchens, that’s just the beginning.  In fact, I don’t think having a grill qualifies as an outdoor kitchen.  You need more such as counters, a refrigerator… a dedicated prep and cooking space on your patio or deck.

While it’s still fairly novel, more and more people are building outdoor kitchens in their backyard.  Our outdoor kitchen gallery showcases hundreds of designs.

6. Fence Options

There are a lot of backyard fence styles and designs to choose from.  It boggles the mind.  

And it's not some random mix of designs either.  There are solid fence classifications such as dog ear, scallop, flat top, lattice top, picket, shadow box, rail, and spaced picket.

On top of that there's fence materials, the two biggies being wood and vinyl.  

Then there's purpose which is security, privacy, pool, decorative, garden or perhaps a combination.

The point being, a fence is not just a fence.  You need to carefully decide which fence is best for your backyard.

7. Gazebo Designs

Wood gazebo in the backyardSave

Not terribly popular, but can be a great addition on your deck, patio or in the yard.

Gazebos aren't cheap, especially a quality cedar type, but if you enjoy eating outdoors, it can be a great way to get a covered outdoor dining space.

In fact, we had a gazebo growing up and used it all summer long.  While not huge, it comfortably sat 5 of us for dinner.  What was nice about it was the square table which makes for plenty of surface area for dining.  Check out our huge gazebo article and gallery.

8. Retaining Wall Designs, Materials and Ideas

If you have any kind of a slope in your yard, you may consider building a retaining wall in order to landscape it and get more use out of it.

Retaining walls are a great way to get more surface area for gardens, sitting areas or other uses in the yard.  Typically they're built for creating additional garden space.

We have 2 retaining wall articles.  One is our retaining wall gallery and the other is our retaining wall materials article.

9. Awning Options

A covered deck or patio is really nice to have, especially an option that is retractable.  That's what an awning offers and it's great, but can be expensive.

Sometimes you want the sun; other times shade.  If your deck or patio is adjacent to your house structure, you can attach an awning.  Actually, there are freestanding awning options too.

And that's the point of our extensive backyard awning article... it explains the key five types of awnings.

10. Chicken Coop Options

Homesteading, self-sufficiency, vegetable gardening, canning... are all activities on the rise, even in suburban and urban areas.

Included in this pursuit of being more environmentally friendly, budget-conscious or simply for the challenge, is including a chicken coop for eggs.

Our friends had a chicken coop for years.  They enjoyed fresh eggs daily and even made a few bucks selling them.  While a bit of work, if you enjoy your yard and the thrill of providing your own food, a chicken coop is an inexpensive option.

11. Backyard Pond Ideas

While we don't have a natural backyard pond, I'd love to design and build one.  I love water features.

A small or large pond can enhance any yard, but it's important to do it right so the water doesn't get stagnant and that it doesn't look DIY.  For instance, you need to really put in an effort so that it looks natural in backyard.  You don't want tarp or other materials showing.

But, when done well, it's a great feature for any yard.

12. Backyard Landscaping Ideas

Photo of nice backyard landscapingSave

Sometimes when planning out your yard you simply want to look at a wide variety of photos and designs to see if anything strikes a nerve.

That's what this gallery is all about... a collection of 41 different, but very cool landscaping ideas.

13. Walkway Ideas

Walkways are an relatively inexpensive backyard (and front yard) feature many homes can add.  They make for a great feature that you can plant gardens around and are also functional in providing clear paths to various parts of the yard.

There are many materials one can use for a walkway.  Some materials are easier to use than others if you are going the DIY route.  For instance, most people could create a good gravel walkway; however, brick requires far more craftsmanship.  Our main walkways gallery features all types of walkways including gravel, paver, flagstone, brick, wood, stone and combinations of materials.

14. Roof Types

Who knew there were so many different types of roofs for the home?

We cover them all with excellent illustrations and descriptions.  Learn all about the different types of roofs for a home:

15. Outdoor Lighting Ideas

When it comes to outdoor lighting, you have as many options as indoor lighting (which is a lot).

We put together a massive series focusing on all your outdoor lighting options, including an extensive write-up on landscape lighting plus buying guides for specific types of outdoor lighting.  Click the button below to check out our massive series on outdoor lighting.

16. Front Door Design Ideas (and different types)

One of the first things people see when coming to your house is the front door.

While you likely don't want to go too nuts with a wild design (unless your house is a wild design), you should also take care to enhance the front exterior entrance as much as you can with the right color, material, design and surrounding elements like front door lighting, a mat, windows etc.

We have a huge gallery of front door examples of all types.  Check them out:

17. House Siding Guide (16 Types Explained)

Collage of different house siding materialsSave

The siding you choose makes a big impact to the overall design of your house from the curb, front yard and the backyard.

These days there are many options to choose from, but each has its pros and cons.

We put together an massive guide on house siding and exteriors. Check it out:

18. Home Architectural Styles Explained (32 Types)

This is one of our most popular articles.  We have a great photo chart/gallery quickly showcasing the various home architectural styles.  

In fact, we showcase and explain 32 types.

If you're looking to learn about this aspect of home design, check out our article and photo gallery:

19. Home Exterior Ideas (Photo Gallery - searchable by color and style)

Need inspiration for home exterior?

Check out our massive searchable home exterior photo gallery.

You can filter your search by exterior colors and styles.

Big, small, many colors, all styles - get many ideas.

Click the button below for this gallery.

20. Aerial House Views Photo Gallery

I love checking out aerial shots of beautiful homes.

Hence, I published a great gallery of houses viewed from above.

These spectacular houses look even better form the air - you can see the yards, grounds and the home.

Check it out:

21. Pergola Design Ideas

Do you like the idea of a pergola on your deck to provide some relief from the sun without totally obstructing it?

Pergolas are popular deck and patio structures for good reason.  They provide some shade while not totally obscuring the sun.

Check out our photo gallery of pergola ideas and designs.

22. Types of Windows

Need new windows?

Or, designing a new home and need window ideas?

Check out our comprehensive illustrated guide all about the different types and styles of windows.

We have a very helpful illustrated guide that sets out all the different types of windows you have to choose from.

We also set out the main window frame options as well as cross-section illustrations of windows with a different number of panels.

Check out this super helpful guide at:

23. Types of Sheds

Building a new shed?

Or, perhaps looking to buy a new shed?

Whatever the case may be, you need to check out our epic shed guide which sets out, illustrates and describes the 42 different types of sheds via features, style, roof, materials, foundation and purpose.

Check out our shed guide:

24. Backyard Playhouses

When I was a kid I had a terrific playhouse build by my dad.

Last summer my son and I built a bunker playhouse, which while a bit rough around the edges, is pretty cool being partially underground.

Check out our awesome gallery of kids playhouse ideas.

25. Backyard Kids Tree Houses

Of all backyard structures, tree houses are my favorite... but for younger kids, playgrounds are best.

I hope to build my son a tree house one day high up in a tree.  For now he has a custom built bunker (which is also cool).

Check out these amazing 70 tree houses:

26. Backyard Playgrounds

If you have young kids, a backyard playground or set is an ideal addition.

These days your options are amazing, whether you build it yourself or buy the entire set.

Check out these amazing backyard plagrounds:

59 Backyard Ideas (Snapshot Gallery)

Below you can access a backyard ideas overview gallery showcasing a huge variety of options for your yard.  Nothing is in-depth; it's an overview gallery of ideas.

If you're looking for more in-depth, access our specific galleries above or below.  The toggle button below opens up an extensive summary gallery of ideas.

59 Backyard Ideas (Snapshot Gallery)

Get Instant Access to FREE 3D Room Design Software!

A small vanity area inside a medium-sized room.
14 Different Types of Vanities
Buckets of different sizes, styles and colors.
32 Different Types of Buckets
Contemporary bathroom with recessed and wall-mounted lights.
11 Different Types of Bathroom Lighting Ideas
31 Different Types of Toilet Paper Holders
Electric infrared fireplace with mantle in living room
9 Top Infrared Fireplace Picks (Plus “What are infrared fireplaces?”)
Feng shui living room photo example
81 Feng Shui Living Room Rules, Colors and 12 Layout Diagrams
22 Different Types of Fireplace Tools
Family Room vs. Living Room: What’s the Difference?
Wall bed set up as bed with bookshelves on both sides.
Ultimate Wall Bed Guide – Types, Sizes, Cost, Features and More
14 Sleeping Bag Alternatives
A lady is shopping for a new mattress.
40 of the Best Online Mattress Stores
Floor plan illustration of master bedroom furniture layout
13 Master Bedroom Floor Plans (Computer Drawings)
kitchen layout ideas and tips
10 Kitchen Layouts & 6 Kitchen Dimension Diagrams (2018)
13 Eco-Friendly Paper Towel Alternatives for Your Kitchen
Different kinds of kitchen tools on one table.
63 Essential Kitchen Tools – The Ultimate List
26 Different Types of Cake Decorating Tools
Creative firewood privacy wall
13 Outstanding Privacy Fence Ideas (Different Types)
14 Different Types of Tree Cutting Tools
16 Different Types of Lawn Tools
11 Different Types of Digging Tools
3 Types of Air Compressors (Plus Benefits and Comparison)
14 Different Types of Granite Cutting Tools
13 Different Types of Car Wash Tools
15 Different Types of Fence Building Tools
20 Styles of Sofas & Couches Explained with Photos
10 Attractive Accent Chairs Under $100 (2018)
Living room furniture covered with black and red, printed slipcovers.
36 Different Types of Slipcovers
Ping pong table outside
18 Different Types of Ping-Pong Tables