Garden Design

Modern Garden Design Ideas to Improve Your Space

Just like the décor in our homes come and go with the trends, so do the design trends in our gardens! It’s true – even a garden can look old and outdated! The good news is, it doesn’t take much to spruce up your garden area to make it look bright and revitalized.

Every gardener has their preferences when it comes to colors, shapes, and designs. To speak to the unique gardener in all of us, we’ve put together a list of garden design ideas you might consider to enhance the outdoor oasis you’ve created.  

Utilize a few of these ideas, or use them all! It’s easy to give your garden a fresh new design with these garden design inspirations for your space.

Separate the Space with Florals

Incorporating greenery around your driveway is a great way to separate your outdoor space from the blunt lines of the concrete. Make the line between your yard and driveway a little less aggressive by creating a floral border.

Consider plants that are at least waist-high, especially if your driveway lines up with a backyard or large front yard. Plants that are more full and which bloom can act almost like a fence line without being so straight-edged.

Line Your Stairs

It cannot be overstated how much florals can make a space more welcoming. If you want guests to feel like they’re being drawn into your home just by the sway of the flowers, make sure to incorporate them along the sides of your stairs.

Whether you’ve got simple stairs up to your front porch or a few sets throughout an impressive backyard landscape, line each of them with some tall flowers that make ascending that much prettier.

Colorful Entrance

Some people incorporate plants into their gardens, but they don’t think about the space around their front door. Similar to having florals along your stairs, you might also consider having some around your entrance way.

If you have a grand entry that is tall, you might add in some tall planters or potted trees. For more of a cottage feel, consider some plant boxes on either side of the door or beneath the mailbox.

To keep things fresh, utilize these spaces differently in every season.

Hand-Made Plant Boxes

Plant boxes are becoming a very trendy item for landscape design, but they don’t have to cost you an arm and a leg! You can easily nail together a planter box with some leftover wood pieces, or even build them from used wooden pallet.

These plant boxes have become popular as more and more people try to improve their carbon footprint and grow their own food. If you’d like, you can do the same thing, or use them for plants and flowers instead.

You can paint them if you’d like, but the natural wood color also goes perfectly with the surrounding greenery.

Lamp Posts

Let your guests be transported into another time and place with some unique lamp posts spread out around your front or backyard. Depending on the size of the space, you can use these to line a trail or border the back entranceway.

A great tip is to look for older lamp posts with some character, which you can often find in second-hand stores and garage sales. It adds a conversation piece to the area, while also adding a warm glow.

Curious Vines

Some people picture creepy old houses as being covered in aged, old vines. However, a fresh vine can turn any space into a gorgeous, private oasis.

If you have any sort of pergola or structure, adding some climbing vines can turn your garden space into a magical place. As long as you tame the vines and cut them back when necessary, you’ll have a space that provides shade and a gorgeous visual (We suggest climbing moonflower).

Bird Bath Upgrade

If you’ve got lots of critters who like to visit your space, adding a friendly watering hole is a great idea! If you want a modern look, consider incorporating a piece that can hold water but that is much different than the common bird bath.

A water trough is a great option so long as you have the space. Just make sure it’s not too deep so that passing animals can drink safely. Any sort of vessel will do, so find something in an antique shop that speaks to you!

Garden Arbor

Your garden is a labor of love, and your hard work should be highlighted! While it’s always ideal to decorate seating areas with pergolas and hanging vines, consider incorporating one around your garden space.

This modern trend makes garden spaces more welcoming, and provides you with another space to grow mystical vines and droopy flowers. Your guests will be more inclined to explore your garden then your sitting space!

Vintage Furniture

Another trend that seems to be growing with the eco-friendly trend is the refurbishing of old, rustic furniture.

There are some very unique pieces that you can find at antique stores and auctions, and they do well in spaces that have a vintage feel. Some pieces will simply need a new coat of paint before they’re just like new.

Improve your garden design with some unique furniture pieces and the space will immediately look fresh and inviting. 

Fill in the Cracks

If you have a patio or path that’s lined with large stone, you might know the pain of pesky weeds coming up as soon as you pull them. This can make your yard look wild and uncared for.

To improve your garden design, consider planting some perennials in between the stones and let the plants spread as they may. Succulents do a great job of spreading in small spaces, as well as thyme.

A patio that has flourishing greens instead of weeds in its cracks will improve the space and be more favorable for bare feet.

Geometric Shapes

For a more modern design in your garden, consider being a little more adventurous with shapes. Garden beds don’t all have to be circles and squares; in fact, choosing something like a triangle or diamond is sure to be a great conversation piece!

The additional benefit of choosing a more modern shape for your flower beds is that you have more options when it comes to fitting everything into the space. Create a unique shape that works well with the space you have instead of forcing a design that doesn’t make sense.   

Hanging Pots

An overgrown yard will certainly look sad and unwelcoming. If you’ve got more plants than you know what to do with, consider moving them vertically!

A fun garden design trend that’s serving a lot of gardeners well is utilizing fences and sheds to hang pots off the ground. It saves up on space, and also protects plants that are becoming a treat for visitors.

You can hang wooden pallets on your fence and secure some pots, or invest in some hanging wall pots that are designed to be screwed into your fence. You can grow flowers, herbs, and even some vegetables depending on the size! This is a great way to dress up a boring fence and add some color at the eye-line.

Garden Bike

As we attempt to create less waste, your garden is the perfect spot for inspiration. What kinds of things can you add to your garden that would work great as planters or seating?

In this case, a vintage bicycle is a popular choice for sprucing up an old garden. You can paint the bicycle however you’d wish and lean it against a tree. The added benefit? Any bicycle with a front basket serves as a flower box as well!

All-Lavender, All Day

Lavender is such a hardy plant, and while it’s deer-resistant, it’s loved by our precious pollinators! To create a beautiful, pastel garden design, consider lining your pathways and stairs with rows of lavender for an updated look.

Lavender is not only beautiful, but smells even better! You can also harvest some of your growth for other spots in the garden to create a more complete design.

Add a Mysterious Path

Unless you’re creating a Zen garden that calls for straight lines and pathways, consider incorporating a winding path to improve your garden design.

A path that winds through the yard adds an element of mystery,and entices guests to explore your space. Line the path with waist-high shrubs or bushes, and consider having your patio furniture at the end.

This way you can highlight the hard work through your yard and also give it a modern upgrade.

Jazz Up Your Garage

It’s not just your backyard and shed that can be improved; even a basic garage can be turned into a beautiful space to come home to!

Add some color and texture to your garage by adding draping vines or drooping flowers to the frame. This makes the entranceway look much more welcoming and has a way of altering the idea that the garage is nothing but a place for cars and storage.

A Reading Nook for Everyone

To improve your garden design, consider adding a little nook that you can escape to. This doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg – it simply needs to be a quiet space where you’d be comfy enough to sit down with a good book.

Gardens often look outdated when they’re too simple; adding this kind of aesthetic will show that you actually enjoy spending time in this space. You might think about including some privacy bushes, a few chairs, or a reading bench with bird feeders around.

Less Manicured Path

If you want your latest garden design to seem as though it’s right out of a fairytale, then this is the project for you. While stone and gravel paths have always been in style, this green path is a modern take to add a little whimsical to your space.

Simply decide on a specific zone to create your path, and allow the area to grow wild for a little while. You’ll want the area to be mostly grass, clovers, or a combination of both. The idea is to create a grassy pathway that is soft and thick, and which entices visitors to take the path barefoot.

Bedazzled Shed

Gone are the days when sheds were only meant for holding gardening tools. While they can still do that, a more modern garden design will incorporate the shed into the space as another interesting element.

There are lots of ways to include your shed in your modern garden design, including a fresh paint job, flower boxes, operating windows, and even a reading nook inside. The options are endless here, but the goal is to have the shed become part of the scenery instead of having it stick out like a sore thumb.

The Back of the House

The back of a house might have shrubs and plants along the base, but many gardeners don’t think about utilizing the windows and doors to add more colors and textures! Update your garden design by incorporating the back of your home into your garden as well.

You can color match with your gardens, or throw in a color that you haven’t tried yet. You might also consider painting the back door a fun shade, or adding a wreath! All of this creates a more modern, cohesive look that avoids making the garden look like a separate space.

Rose Garden

Roses used to be the flower that people only bought for Valentine’s Day, but roses are making a comeback in garden designs! Specifically, trimmed bushes or growing vines of roses really set the tone for a romantic backyard escape.

If you have an archway or structure at your entrance, consider incorporating roses for a charming and shady masterpiece. For a more modern look, go for a pop of color like pink instead of the monotone white.

Easy Ground Maintenance

The perfectly manicured yard covered in bright green grass isn’t really “the look” anymore. Modern garden designs are doing away with this kind of flat texture and are instead going with thicker ground cover that is low-maintenance.

One option we would suggest is micro-clover, which covers the ground well and is easy to grow. These clovers have great roots and can easily hold onto water for a long time. That means less watering, and a more eco-friendly garden, too!

Still not convinced? Aside from being maintenance-free and just as soft as grass, lots of ground cover options will stick around through every season. Your garden will always be beautiful to look at no matter what the weather is doing.

Game Night in the Garden

Give your garden a fresh design that entices guests to stay a little longer. Without utilizing too many, a few decorative garden structures that also serve as game stations will make your space fun and usable.

Stone tables that double as chess boards are a favorite, as well as giant Jenga pieces! Depending on your guests, you’ll know which games they’d prefer.

A Modern Greenhouse

If you’re looking for a new element to add to a large space in your garden, consider a modern greenhouse. New designs are made with all kinds of unique shapes and windows, making it a space that can be much more than just a place for plants.

Consider adding a small area for afternoon tea or a bookcase filled to the brim. Utilizing spaces for more than one activity is a great use of space, and the glass walls will help to keep the space looking open instead of overwhelming in your yard.

Water Features

An easy way to add spark to an old garden is to add a working water feature. The sound of water is very relaxing and could be the landscaping design your garden has been begging for.

Regardless of whether you add in a tiny pond, a waterfall, or a whole creek, water features encourage native plant life and furry friends to start appearing. If you like a yard filled with the buzz of creatures enjoying your space, definitely consider integrating something like this.

These modern garden design ideas are meant to improve your space; however, they don’t all have to be done in a day. If you don’t like the way your garden looks now, start with a few smaller projects you want to change, and work your way from there.

Creating a modern garden design will take time, but a year from now it will be totally worth all of the effort. Instead of seeing a dull, uninviting yard, guests will love visiting your space and spend most of their time outdoors! Which is a good thing, since you will too.  

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