A beautiful garden relies on hardscape features as well as lush foliage and flowers. Here are several landscaping ideas to consider for your property.

Retaining Walls

Retaining walls are often built to create tiers in a sloping yard, but you can also construct these walls on flat ground to form levels and add dimension. These walls are open-ended in terms of design. Depending on the look you want to create, you can use timber sleepers, concrete blocks, sandstone or boulders. Wooden sleepers are perfect for a rustic look, but timber doesn't last as long as other materials in a moist garden environment. Durable interlocking concrete blocks can be coloured and textured to create a variety of looks and to mimic organic substances.

Like concrete, sandstone will last for years in the garden. Boulders are ideal if you want the wall to look entirely natural and blend in with the garden. An expert will choose rocks of a particular shape and size to stack on the wall, making sure it's stable. If you want an edgy, industrial look, why not consider a gabion wall consisting of a wire cage filled with rocks? You could build elevated garden beds or encircle a raised patio with the wall.


Another way you could complement the greenery and add visual interest is to construct a pathway that meanders through the garden. You can choose stone or concrete pavers and create patterns like running bonds or herringbone designs. Pavers create a stable surface that won't get boggy in the rain, as the sub-base consists of gravel and sand that drain water. You could construct a path down the side of your home, often a neglected garden area. Alternatively, connect it to a garden patio or a simple seat set near the back of the yard.

Other path materials include gravel or stepping stones. Gravel creates a classic but rustic look, and you can choose different coloured pebbles in reds, yellows, tans, and grey, for instance. Stepping stones create a whimsical pathway that's not as practical for wheeling bikes and wheelbarrows.

Garden Edging

Garden edging helps to keep soil in place and prevent runoff. It also makes the garden neat and adds visual interest. You can use diverse materials, such as railway sleepers, rocks, and bricks. You can also improvise and use creative elements for the edging. For example, do you have access to logs, metal piping, or coloured glass bottles? Pick a texture and colour that will complement the foliage. Or scatter pebble mulch on the soil to complement the edging.