From soaking in the sun during the summer to cozying up by a fire pit in the fall, outdoor living spaces are oftentimes the favorite part of any home. But, unless you live on a large lot of land, chances are you may have a neighbour who just seems a little too close sometimes.
Luckily, there are several ways to solve this common problem. This can be important when staging your home for sale too. As people, even post-pandemic - spend more time at home – and more time outside in their outdoor space – buyers are looking for privacy and peace, and if you can demonstrate your property offers it that will be a big plus.
Check out these backyard privacy ideas and transform your outdoor space into your own personal (and private) escape.
Introduce a water feature
Creating a private outdoor space involves more than just sight; it also involves sound. Consider installing a water feature to reduce unwanted traffic noise or rowdy next-door pets while also increasing privacy.
A bubbler fountain like the one above is a great option if your outdoor space is limited. A landscape designer can help you create a tall water feature or install a water fountain that flows with your outdoor space and drowns out the noise if you have a large backyard and the budget.
Create privacy with oversized containers
For creating backyard privacy, extra large containers filled with the right plants are ideal. To create a private outdoor space, choose tall grasses or tall plants when adding greenery. When the wind blows, the long, airy blades of tall grass create a soothing sound, which can help muffle neighborhood noise.
Another fast-growing plant that enhances outdoor seclusion while also providing beautiful scenery is bamboo. Or consider filling oversized planters with evergreen shrubs for year-round privacy. You can find a variety of greenery at a nursery or garden shop, and they can help you decide what is best for our Waterloo Region climate and your backyard design.
Incorporating trellises is a simple privacy solution
Trellises are a cost-effective and simple way to increase backyard privacy. Simply place one strategically near your patio or porch, or add several along your property line for added privacy. Plant climbing vines at the trellis’ base, and your home will soon have a beautiful garden structure that also serves as a sound barrier.
Your local garden shop will be able to advise you on the best trellis-climbing plants for your area when you visit.
Trellises have the added benefit of filtering sunlight without blocking the breeze because they are semi-transparent. Even better, trellises come in a wide range of styles and price points, ranging from rustic to contemporary. If you’re a do-it-yourselfer, consider making your own trellis to save even more money.
An outdoor privacy screen can do the trick
Setting up an outdoor privacy screen is one of the most simple yet effective backyard privacy ideas. Consider making your own instead of buying one if you want to make a fun weekend project out of it. You can make a functional privacy screen out of PVC pipe and fabric, or you can build one out of old shutters or doors.
Consider making or purchasing a screen that is taller than your fence to give yourself more vertical privacy if you have an outdoor space with a short fence or barrier. Not only is this a cost-effective option, but an outdoor privacy screen can also provide shade on hot days.
Get creative with oversized umbrellas
If you share tight corridors with your neighbors, your outdoor space is likely to be limited. Even if you don’t have much space to work with, you can still create a private outdoor retreat. Using an oversized umbrella as a privacy screen in the backyard is a cost-effective and simple solution.
Install a tall fence for ultimate backyard privacy
Installing a tall privacy fence in your backyard, if your budget and space allow, is a sure way to increase privacy. You’ll be able to find the perfect height and style of fence for your backyard thanks to the wide range of fencing options available. You can purchase the fencing materials and install it yourself if you consider yourself handy.
The simplest solution is to have a professional install it for you if you’d rather just sit back and enjoy your outdoor space once it’s all set up. In either case, you’ll have a more private and relaxing outdoor space.
Create a “living fence”
Opt for a “living fence” with tall trees or hedges if you’re looking for a backyard privacy idea that keeps the natural element of your outdoor space.
While this isn’t the most expedient or convenient option, it’s a great long-term solution for complete privacy. A landscape design professional can assist you in constructing a “living fence” to increase your backyard privacy while also creating a unique and beautiful design.