Got space? Transform your backyard into a retreat
Have a holiday at home
With shrinking land sizes across the country, it’s no surprise that the majority of backyard design and gardening advice focuses on achieving great style in a small space however, if you’ve got the room and the know-how, large backyards can be transformed into stunning landscapes for a ‘holiday at home’ feel.
Use your space for a mid-week escape
56 per cent of Aussies said that they have a large-size yard for gardens and entertaining in the 2018 Adbri Masonry Great Australian Backyard Survey, yet this space is often forgotten about and goes unloved during the working week. Poorly planned backyards usually result in big, boring spaces that don’t add any value to your home and miss the opportunity to create love and freedom in a key family area.
“With a little research, inspiration and planning, dull backyards can be converted into feature areas for eating, entertaining, relaxing and gardening. The backyard should be versatile and meet family needs. Big backyards provide a brilliant blank canvas to exhibit some creative flair by designing what could be the most used space in the home,” says Better Homes Gardens landscape expert, Jason Hodges.
Value your land like the banks do
“Whether you’re creating a zoned garden where children can play in a safe environment or building an upmarket entertainer, the key is to value your land like the banks do and make smart decisions that respect the value this land brings to your home,” continues Jason.
How to transform your backyard like a pro
1 - Get creative
The most important part of a beautiful landscaped garden is the place where you’ll sit back and appreciate it. This is usually the courtyard or patio area that runs off the back of the house and makes the transition from indoor to outdoor living. While this is practical, large backyards provide the opportunity to get creative.
2 – Make a focus point
If the façade of your home needs work and looks dated, consider taking the “focus” away from the home by having a path off the house, leading to a feature courtyard in the centre of the space. This draws attention away from the home and shows off the size and depth of your yard.
3 – Select your materials
Pavers are a great choice for landscaping stepping stone paths leading up to the entertaining area. “While I love stepping stones separated by pebbles or turf for paths, the foundation pavement should be a solid area which can house your dining and relaxing furniture as well as any shading or barbeque equipment,” explains Jason. Adbri Masonry’s Euro® Stone pavers are a good choice for backyard reno’s as they are designed to be durable in harsh climates and require minimal maintenance. The Euro® Stone range also caters for homeowners in a variety of colours, sizes, and textures, with many options available to suit any home.
4 – Think about what your family would enjoy
If you have children, a large backyard provides an opportunity to create an outdoor place where kids can play safely, so take advantage and start planning your kid friendly yard. Section off a corner and create the ultimate children’s playground, family veggie garden or sand pit.
“Try building a cubby house or teepee that can be used in summer as a shaded play area or as a mini campsite in winter,” says Jason. “I also love the idea of placing pavers in a hopscotch pattern and letting grass grow in between. The pavers will act as a pathway for your garden, as well as a fun activity for your children.”
5 – Establish a functional outdoor room
There are countless ways to create an exceptional outdoor room to entertain and spend time with family and friends. “There is a growing desire for functional outdoor entertaining spaces that act as an extension of the indoor dining and entertainment areas,” says Stephen Thompson, Managing Director of Allworth Homes.
To make the most of your backyard, try incorporating a dining area with built-in seating to give the area structure and make use of available space. Adbri Masonry’s Versawall blocks can create vertical retaining walls that double as a garden wall and bench seat… Neat!
6 – Add eye catching depth and dimension
By adding depth and dimension to your backyard with a sunken patio, you can transform your backyard into a mini retreat! “If you have a large backyard that slopes away at any point, consider this a perfect spot for a sunken patio,” explains Jason.
Level changes immediately increase the aesthetic appeal and intricacy of a space, and often in small yards, level changes are hard to achieve so make the most of bigger areas by introducing steps and garden walls, terraced retaining walls or go the other way to create sunken entertaining areas.
7 – Big points for big plants!
One of the best benefits of a big backyard (and the fun part of backyard reno’s), is plant selection. The additional space available in larger yards significantly increases planting potential because there is room for more mature plants that can become the focal point of the garden. In bigger yards, the risk of larger feature trees dominating the area and creating an excess of unwanted shade is reduced. You can also use larger hedging to block out your nosy neighbours until you send out invitations for your next backyard barbeque!
8 – Beat the heat
Having a large backyard is the perfect canvas for a pool and functional space surrounding it. Imagine yourself sunbaking, entertaining, BBQ-ing or relaxing in this functional feature space. “Try taking cue from the Island of Gods, with a Bali-inspired plunge pool that is small and cleverly landscaped,” said Jason. “Pave the boundary with Adbri Masonry’s Euro Classic or Euro® Stone pavers that will give your pool a sleek finish, whilst providing a safe, slip resistant surface,” he suggests.
Let’s get started!
For more inspiration on DIY backyards, check out Jason’s top tips on our YouTube channel or you can like our Facebook page to stay on trend. For a hassle free paver selection, jump onto our website and select what works for you home. We’d also love to see your backyard masterpiece so if you’ve used our products, tag us on Instagram - @adbrimasonry. Time to get snazzy!