Stunning Landscape Design Ideas For Small Gardens

No matter how small your backyard or patio garden is, thoughtful landscaping ideas can make it feel like a calming retreat. These stunning landscape design ideas for small gardens are just what you need to transform your space.

Clear rectilinear designs define spaces in long, narrow gardens, while flowing organic curves soften awkward angles. Try adding tall arching ornamental grasses to your garden landscape.

Fire Pits

A fire pit can add warmth, a cooking source, and an ambiance to your garden. It also makes a natural gathering spot for guests and friends, encouraging conversation and enhancing the social feel of your outdoor space.

Whether you prefer the sculptural forms of brutalism or a more feminine and classic look, a stone fire pit fits many styles. Concrete benches and a row of fruitless olives frame the brick fire pit area, and classic white seating complements the white picket fence.

The rounded edges of this cottage fire pit and seating area create a soft and welcoming feel, even in a small garden. The carefree planting palette of boxwoods and moss supports this sense of natural style. The curved pathways and walkways also help widen the sense of space. If your backyard looks bigger, consider incorporating trees into the landscape design. Their canopies will grow over the years, helping to expand your garden visually.

A Large Focal Point

A backyard garden should have a purpose: entertaining guests, growing flowers and vegetables, or simply relaxing with family and friends. Focusing on how you want to use your garden will help to determine what landscape ideas work best. Take a look at these big summer houses for large gardens, which can enhance the aesthetic of your garden and serve as a place where you can relax.

For a lush feel that adds visual depth to a small garden, layer in ferns and tree mosses. Then include low-maintenance plants that require minimal watering, like ornamental grasses and a flowering clematis vine. This creates a green space that looks beautiful year-round.

Narrow gardens need zones to break up their length. As shown here, plant tall arching ornamental grasses and other fast-growing perennials to create a mesmerizing effect that encloses a seating area. Or, train a fast-growing vine up a trellis for shade and privacy. This requires less maintenance than a pergola and is a great idea for an apartment or condo garden. You can also grow shrubs for color and texture and a sprinkling of evergreens for structure.

Minimal Fencing

Fencing may not be a top priority in a small garden, but it can enhance the space when it is present. Rather than a solid fence that limits what can be seen from the yard, consider a louver fence that is open but still provides privacy. This slatted fencing can also be grown up over for a living wall.

Elevating plantings can help a narrow backyard landscape design feel larger. Here, hydrangeas and boxwood are lined up along the stairs to a deck in this small backyard garden. Plants can also be raised with retaining walls or more formal raised beds integrated into other hardscape features, such as these stairs.

Narrow gardens are easily boosted by using height and contrasting colors. Here, tall arching ornamental grasses create mesmerizing effects in the narrow plot, while a bright potting bench and trellis make it a great place to sit. The twisting pathway also helps the landscape feel wider.

Curved Pathways

Rather than sticking to straight paths, curves are the way to go with your garden path ideas. This slows movement and encourages the eye to linger over the beautiful planting and landscape features. Using curved pavers adds an elegant touch to any plot, especially with a herringbone pattern.

Bricks can also be laid curved to create a durable and attractive pathway. A curved gravel garden path works beautifully in country gardens and is easy to maintain. It can be softened with trailing plants that run from the edge of a planter or over it.

Alternatively, you can lay down a looser gravel garden path that zigzags through your borders and flower beds to create a sense of journey. It’s an effective way to bring a calming and natural feel to any backyard, and it’s perfect for bringing in the principles of Feng Shui, which promotes health, wealth, and success.


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