There are resources galore for homeowners who don’t have much outdoor space to speak of; there are tips on top of tips for giving a small yard big personality. However, what the internet seems to lack is help for homeowners with more yard than they know what to do with.
If you stumbled into ownership of a large exterior space and you are struggling to make anything work, this guide is (finally) for you. Read on for tips on how to design your outdoor areas and care for them easily, too.
Create Distinct Spaces for Different Uses
When you are privileged with a big backyard, you should take full advantage of each square foot. That doesn’t mean allowing your lawn to spread into every corner; instead, you should make the most of your yard by creating “rooms” using different landscaping, hardscaping and other elements. These outdoor spaces can have distinct purposes, just like the rooms in your home. For example, you might have an entertaining space, a relaxation space, a recreation space, a play space and more. If you have the square footage to differentiate these areas, you absolutely should.
Typically, you want your outdoor entertaining spaces to be relatively close to the house; even if you have a backyard kitchen, you don’t want guests to have to trek to reach the bathroom or other indoor areas. You can organize your other outdoor rooms according to your desire for the space. For instance, a relaxation nook might be surrounded by walls of vegetation, like hedges or trellises, to provide privacy and connection to nature, or it might be on a raised gazebo in the middle of your lawn, allowing you to soak in your landscaping as you destress. By separating your yard into distinct spaces, you can make it easier to decorate each area and less overwhelming to maintain.
Make Visual Interest with Intersecting Shapes
When landscapers start to design, they usually start by thinking about what shapes will work well in the provided space. Smaller yard–owners don’t often have the luxury to experiment with different shapes; they have to work with rectangles to maximize the use of space. However, because your yard is so large, you can afford to be a little less than optimal for the sake of attractive design.
You don’t have to stick to one type of shape, either. Overlapping angular and curved shapes blends a sense of nature with civilized structure to create a comfortable and beautiful landscape design. A good example of this is placing a square or rectangular pergola on an abstract, rounded patio, which might also feature an angular fire pit or fountain. Alternatively, you could place a meandering footpath through a modern, square lawn, leading to another geometric “room” in your yard. The contrast between different types of shapes adds visual interest that grabs and holds viewers’ attention, making for a stunning landscape.
Don’t Be Afraid to Hire Professional Help
The larger the yard, the more work it is to keep it looking nice. Unfortunately, that drives many large yard–owners to take extreme measures to limit the required yard maintenance, such as filling most or all of the outdoor space with lifeless gravel.
Zeroscaping isn’t attractive or functional, so instead of going to such extremes, you should consider hiring professionals to service your large yard. In places with huge property sizes like Dallas, lawn mowing services are readily available and especially affordable, and you should be able to find a full-service lawn care provider to trim trees and shrubs, pull weeds, rake debris and generally tend to your yard’s needs. Your yard should be a place of joy and rest, and by outsourcing the work to professionals, you can keep it such.
Go Big, Bold and Unexpected
If the previous tips don’t appeal, you can always do something extravagant with your immense outdoor space. Large yards speak of opulence, and you can communicate that better with big, bold and outrageous design elements. Here are just a few ideas to get your imagination going:
- Topiaries. Sculpted into vast shapes or detailed figures, topiaries are both whimsical and awe-inspiring.
- Labyrinth. Using hedges, rose bushes or even garden beds, you can create a maze of your own. In the Zen tradition, landscaped mazes help calm and focus the mind — but if you follow the Classical European mindset, you might hide something special at the middle of your labyrinth.
- Fountains. Fountains provide a relaxing sound of running water, but when large enough, they can become the focal point of your yard and provide glittering movement.
- Pond. Ponds come in all shapes and sizes. You can connect a series of smaller ponds and fill them with brightly colored koi, or you could have one large pond feature stocked with catchable fish for a bit of recreational fun.
When you have a large yard to work with, you can make almost any landscaping dream come true. While it’s practical to break up your yard into areas with unique functions, you should ultimately do what makes you happy — even if that means doing the unexpected.