Lush Landscaping Ideas for a Sloping Backyard
A well-landscaped hillside property can really accentuate a home’s architecture to create the perfect vista. The same cannot be said for a sloping yard that has suffered from years of neglect. Trust me, been there and experienced that.
With soil erosion playing a large part in why many homeowners, landlords and renters avoid tinkering with their slanted gardens, it’s little wonder some sloped properties start to look a little worse for wear as time rolls on.
But this needn’t be the case. There are plenty of landscaping ideas you can introduce – both as an owner and a renter that will improve the aesthetics of your property as well as help manage issues flooding, pooling and soil erosion.
Build a retaining wall
Make your sloping property functional by digging into part of the hill to make space for a retaining wall. Not only will your slant look a lot neater, it will also hold the soil back, which will minimise soil erosion or loss. You’ll also gain a lovely area to plant some gorgeous leafy or flowery plants that will dress up your yard big-time.
Another way you can manage erosion is to build tiers and layers into your property. Fill each level with different types of plants for a dramatic effect; depending on your slope, this could mean planting taller shrubs along the back tier, or introducing a groundcover plant such as Pigface to the garden beds to totally cover the dirt with vibrant colours instead.
Introduce a simple set of stairs to your sloping yard that leads to level ground. Whether it’s a wooden staircase you choose to create or concrete steps, you can easily blend this feature into the landscape by planting a variety of plants (especially natives) on either side of the steps.
Stick with native plants
Adorning your yard with plants that are native to your area certainly makes garden maintenance a lot easier. If you have a section of lawn that is particularly difficult to mow, dig out the ground to make room for eye-catching native plants that will grow successfully without much assistance. Not only will your garden look nicer, it will also help to reduce soil erosion by providing a network of roots that will hold the soil in place. It’s a win-win!
Plant a rock garden
Poor drainage goes hand-in-hand with soil erosion when it comes to hillside properties. That’s why I always stop to admire a fabulous rock garden, because not only is it attention-grabbing, it assists with minimising soil erosion by creating alternate paths for water and rain to escape. I suggest introducing ornamental grasses and creeping ground cover plants as they’re low maintenance and look fab.
Here are some simple hacks to getting the most out of your slanted outdoor space.
Take advantage of unused garden space that attracts full sun by establishing some raised veggie beds! Herbs and vining plants can be grown in a more shallow part of the container, while deeper sections can be used for root vegetables. And if you’re handy with a hammer, you can always build a step using pallet wood to level out your veggie box.
Your rental may be on a slope, but if you’ve got a terrific view of a tree you’re fond of, start by clearing away any weeds or shrubs that distract from the focal point, and position your outdoor seating arrangement to maximise the sight lines of your desired view. Hang some solar fairy lights in the direction of the vista to draw attention towards and it there you have it! A gorgeous, low-fuss backyard with a view.
Invest in some large pots and planters that distract from the slope of your yard. Position them on your slanted space according size, aiming to place the larger pots and trees at the lowest points to create the illusion of a more level yard.
No longer do you need to dread the ordeal of an expensive landscape for your hillside property. There are plenty of little tricks you can introduce to maintain an aesthetically pleasing property while also managing soil erosion and drainage. The key is to opt for plants that are accustomed to the climate and soil in your area, and prevent water from being able to cascade into and through your yard. Happy gardening!