New Patio and low-maintenance garden

This dog-loving couple came to Southview Design hoping to create a space to entertain in their suburban backyard that also catered to their four-legged friends. The final design splits the yard into three spaces: the open deck, intimate fire patio, and a low-maintenance dog-friendly garden.

Before: Sloping Backyard with No Place to Sit

With more pebbles than plants, this patchy lawn left much to be desired in the greenery department. The sloping yard had no place flat enough for a table or chairs. The walk between the backdoor and the gate was undefined and steeply graded.

After: Shady Outdoor Living Room

Backfill and a retaining wall provide a level surface for the hottest night spot in town: a backyard living room under an expansive pergola. The neighbors are sure to be frequent visitors of this welcoming retreat.

Design Challenges Met:

  • Leveling a sloping backyard
  • Small space required special care and design
  • Create a landscape for human and canine to share
  • Removed a dead tree stump
Pergola covers the entire patio in this small backyard landscape in savage

Outdoor Living Room and Fireplace

The pergola makes the space more intimate by defining the upper space of the landscape. However, the open spaces between the columns and slats keep the back yard feeling like outside.

Pergola covers the entire patio in shade in this small backyard landscape in savage

The fireplace, patio, and retaining walls are all concrete. The fireplace has been faced with a veneer of artificially aged Lakeland block. The pavers and retaining wall block have the same tumbled finish.

Low maintenance backyard garden with stone path and gate

Last but not leaf – who let the dogs out?

Gently conforming to the side of the hill, this path leads straight to the dog dirt – if you know what I mean. Over several years, shade-loving understorey plants will fill up more of the space. The plastic fences, which temporarily protected the plants, have been removed.

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