Is your backyard steep and hilly? Don’t let it stop you from experiencing the joy of a beautiful and practical yard. Knowing the intricacies of landscaping on a slope and applying this knowledge with a little time and effort can result in an amazing area to admire and enjoy.
Think Outside the Box
Let your imagination run wild on ways to tame the angles, soften the slants and utilize those inclines. Hiring a professional landscaper and designer isn’t always in the budget, but landscaping a slope on your own can be done cheaply and easily with some creative ideas.
Before beginning a do-it-yourself landscaping project, understand the pitfalls presented by a gradient piece of land. For instance, if you’re attempting to grow grass but the rain keeps washing the seed away, it’s time to come up with a new solution, like sod or native plants to guard against erosion.
Important Initial Considerations
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service offers some essential practical advice about building a terrace on a sloping backyard. For example, before excavating any piece of land, you should contact your utility companies to identify buried cables. And for anything more than superficial landscaping, be sure to consult an expert, such as an architect or engineer, before beginning.
6 Fun Solutions for Your Yard
Here are six stylish and unique ways to landscape a slope:
- Sliding for fun. A kid-friendly yard can become the envy of all neighbors, and what do kids love? Slides! Instead of (or in addition to) traditional stairs, consider building a slide on a terraced landscape, as suggested by Houzz. Slides can be created from stainless steel or other easily available materials, and you can increase the fun factor by adding a sandbox with a removable cover next to the slide.
- Unconventional, recycled wall. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and some people have created beautiful retaining walls out of old tires. By arranging the tires in level rows, you can add a flair of drama and strength to your hilly yard. Additionally, if you fill recycled tires with concrete, they’ll last a long time. Better yet, it can be a cheap project, because some tire centers give old tires away for free.
- Artsy expression. If you have an artistic soul and access to mosaic tiles or colorful stones, designing an artistic wall could be the perfect addition to your landscaping. You can install a retaining wall or use a previously built wall, and then you can add embellishments and grout for a professional, finished look. Such an eye-catching display is bound to be a conversation piece when guests visit.
- A sunken sanctuary. Your ground isn’t level, but that doesn’t mean you have to compromise on lifestyle. Designing a sunken patio or living area with stairs can add value to your home. Planting greenery and adding good lighting and comfy chairs creates a place you’ll want to visit all the time. A fire pit can extend the area’s pleasantness to the coolest of nights.
- Deck-ability. If you want more outdoor living space, constructing a deck over a steep slope provides space to grill, dine and relax. According to Remodeling 2016 Cost vs. Value Report ( www.costvsvalue.com), the average price of installing a wood deck is $10,471. However, you can recoup 75 percent of the initial cost when you sell your home.
- A delicious garden. Who doesn’t love to go out their back door and pick some strawberries or pluck some basil from a garden? By designing terraced gardens, you can plant everything from fresh herbs to lettuce for your salads. Allowing easy access with steps or pathways to the gardens makes watering and weeding much simpler.
These six solutions, along with a little time and effort dedicated to the project, can turn your yard into the one of your dreams.
When landscaping on a slope, it’s all up to your imagination, budget and preferences. Don’t let the challenge of hilliness stop you from having a terrific outdoor space. When it comes time to sell your home, a beautiful yard will definitely attract buyers.
© 2016 Hanley Wood, LLC. Complete data from the Remodeling 2016 Cost vs. Value Report can be downloaded free at www.costvsvalue.com.”
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