I’m continuing along with my 2023 Outdoor Living Tour and today I’m bringing you into our garden– which is my happy place this time of year! It’s located in our side yard and we began transforming this space back in 2019, and it has been a work in progress ever since. We don’t have much room for a large garden like we used to have, but this container garden and our raised bed really makes a difference. It’s enough space to grow some veggies, flowers, and pretty plants for added greenery on an otherwise boring side of our home. It’s a tranquil spot and I really enjoy it this time of year! Click through for the complete tour…
This side of our house was pretty overgrown with nothing much to look at. There are no windows on this side of our home, the overgrown vinca was taking over, and this spot turned into the preferred bathroom patch for our dogs… it was always filled with doo- which was difficult to remove amongst the vines. I really missed having a garden and thought the side yard would be optimal for that. Check out this post from 2019 for the beginning stages of our process. Today, it’s beautiful and far more functional (and the dogs no longer use it as their private bathroom)…
We used marble chips atop a weed barrier to keep the invasive vines from returning- they’re easy to clean (with the sweep of a leaf blower or garden hose) and they’re heavy enough to stay in place when the dogs run through. We added a long raised bed which fits the footprint nicely, as well as terracotta planters for a container garden that can easily be shifted and rearranged as needed.
Once challenge I wanted to tackle was finding a solution to make our HVAC units less noticeable. We have two air conditioning units that cool our house back here… as well as our sprinkler housing (peep the green and black box beneath the boxwood). Despite the utility eyesores, we added some easy and affordable vinyl screens to conceal the units. I think they work well and look pretty cohesive with our existing fence.
I also added the most beautiful garden bench, which sadly has since been discontinued, but I linked a similar (more affordable) option for you below. Sometimes I’ll come sit out here with my coffee or a glass of wine after watering. The dogs also like to jump up and hang out. Otherwise, the bench makes a great surface for resting baskets filled with florals or produce I’ve foraged.
I love collecting timeless terracotta planters. The first season we renovated this outdoor space, none of my planters matched. I just used what I had (mostly plastic containers) and what the previous homeowners had left behind. Having a cohesive color or material really made a huge difference in terms of aesthetic… and I enjoy adding to my collection each year.
This year, I’m growing herbs, fruits, berries, and tomatoes. I’ll probably add more vegetables later on, but there is nothing we love or eat more during the summer season than tomatoes. I can salsa, homemade sauce, and make plenty of Italian favorites. When we used to have a large garden (at our Ohio home), I was accustomed to canning at least 50 jars per season.
I love the way the sunlight hits this area in our backyard… it gets great morning light and is protected from the harsh afternoon sun- which is actually ideal for our garden here in Utah, since temperatures are so hot and dry during the summer months. I’ve found plants thrive back here.
One question I’m most often asked about is our cages or obelisk plant trellis– I’ll link them here. They really are stunning and have held up well the past few years. I gave them a good power washing a couple weeks ago and they look like new.
Click the thumbnails below, or use the links below the collage to be redirected to each source.
vinyl screen // wakefield mini planter set // rosemary drop-in // garden stool // boxwood topiary // rosemary topiary // southern planter // provence planter // marble chips // pennington planter // old world planter // tall urn planter // terracotta planters // wood raised garden bed (we painted ours white) // woven handle basket // garden obelisk // outdoor bench (similar) // ruffled planter // throw blanket // tomato plants // raised bed soil // woven tray
I’ve linked everything for you above… or at least the closest items I could find since this makeover happened a few years ago. Please let me know if you need additional sources- I’m happy to share! You could easily add Sunbrella or outdoor cushions to the metal garden bench for a similar look. Mine came from Serena & Lily years ago, but has been discontinued.
This side yard went from neglected and boring to a beautifully layered garden… and while it’s on the smaller side, it’s really become a special spot to us. I enjoy planting, watering, weeding, and getting my hands dirty out here- it really is therapeutic to grow and care for your own plants.
This is one outdoor living space I’m most proud of… probably behind our shed. Why? I think it took some serious creativity to make a boring outdoor area with a weird layout feel useful and interesting. I think we were able to maximize the space, work with the odd shape, and bring beauty to this portion of our yard on a major budget. Somehow it worked out so well!
Be sure to check back on Friday for the next stop on my 2023 Outdoor Living Tour... the shed! It’s looking cute these days. I hope you’re having a great week.