If you’re lucky enough to have yard space in your home, you know that a well thought-out landscape design can give you and your family more room to spend together outdoors all year long. When we think about family friendly landscaping we consider several factors.
The first factor we consider is safety, of course. You want to build a space that is safe for everyone in the family. So, for instance, if you have a pool, you want to make sure you have a fence around it so that kids or pets don’t accidentally fall in.
Other things we look for are overhanging branches, transitions from one type of ground covering to another and the types of plants we select for the softscape.
Another factor to keep in mind is making sure there are different areas of the yard that serve specific purposes. So, installing a patio for family time and eating that doesn’t double as the place the trampoline is placed.
Below are the top 5 family-friendly landscape ideas for any yard
Backyard Patio for Family Entertaining
One of the most popular requests is a backyard patio. This is an important component of any yard because it is where the whole family gathers for meals, conversations, games, and more. It’s also where guests gather when they come over to celebrate birthdays and other special occasions. It’s important that the patio not only has enough room for a patio set and additional seating, but that it also has enough shade covering to make it comfortable all year round. Being strategic about the type of shade cover that is installed is unique to each home. Making note of where the sun hits at different points of the day can help you make the best recommendations. When it comes to the design of the patio, there are so many options. You’re sure to find a material that suits your needs and enhances the design of your backyard.
Butterfly Garden for a Bit of Whimsy
Butterfly gardens are a magical addition to any backyard landscape design. They not only add color and a variety of flowers/plants, but they attract beautiful butterflies that delight children and integrate a bit more of the natural world into your backyard haven. Some common plants that are used are Marigold, Daylilies, Sage, Hollyhock and a whole host of other plants. You may also think about adding a bird bath to the garden as you will likely attract hummingbirds and other pollinators with your butterfly garden.
Painted Garden Stones
This is a fun addition and that incorporates a personal touch. Instead of simply adding plain garden stones for a splash of color around your backyard, get the family together and paint your own designs on the stones. This will not only provide a fun activity for the family to complete together, but will also add more color and personalization to different parts of your backyard.
You can opt to paint them according to a theme such as funny faces or animals or just let each person create their own special design.
Grass or Lawn Space
Maintaining a nicely manicured lawn can sometimes be a challenge for busy families, but we highly recommend having at least a portion of the yard covered in grass. This allows for backyard bocce ball or a game of tag and just general horseplay for the kids. If you have a pet, this is obviously an easy place to take the dog out for playing fetch or just running around the yard for their daily exercise. Increasingly, families are opting to install turf instead of grass due to the water-saving and time-saving properties. In effect, you get all of the advantages of having a beautiful lawn without having to water, mow or aerate.
Plant Fruit Trees or a Vegetable Garden
Having fruit trees has several advantages, from the shade it provides, to the actual fruit it produces to the many lessons it can teach your child about how food is produced. They are relatively low maintenance, needing to be watered regularly and monitored for disease and only require a lot of attention when they are fully in season and the fruit has to be picked regularly or it falls and rots. Vegetable gardens are a bit more work and require continual planning and maintenance, but obviously produce food that you can incorporate into family meals. Not to mention it teaches the kids about soil, animals, food production, life cycles of plants, healthy eating, and so much more.
Consult with your landscaper to see how you can incorporate some of these ideas into your backyard to bring tons of enjoyment to your family for years to come.