Xericstyle

Xeric and stylish gardening in San Antonio, Texas

The plan for the backyard garden…

I was playing with my kids’ markers again…worked the first time.  I am in the process of hiring an installer for all of the hardscaping.  Hopefully things will start rocking and rolling in the next two weeks.  I wanted to share my design for input from my friends.  Speak now or forever hold your peace! ;)  No but really…I would really appreciate your comments.  Do y’all think this flow works?  Did I miss anything?  Any suggestions before 20 cubic yards of D.G. arrives??????!!!!Backyard designThese are the things I feel we need as a family, that I want to implement:

-a parking area.  Right now, if friends or family come there is nowhere to park without blocking us in the garage.  Also, thinking ahead, when the kids are driving (YIKES) we have no where for them to park.  The shed we are going to build will be all along the front of the parking area so we can back up easily to fill the cars with biodiesel.

-a green negative space for the kids to run and play ball, etc.  And for my folks’ puppies when they visit (and maybe one for us in the future)

-a large fenced in veggie garden area.

-a Texas-style informal decomposed granite patio for my picnic tables to enjoy eating outdoors.  The one side of the veggie garden fence will act as a low wall creating a garden room for the Texas-style patio.  Privacy to relax.

-a larger extension of our puny patio – to eventually be flagstone, but will be D.G. at first until we can afford phase 2.

-an herb/kitchen garden that is within the flagstone patio for easy access from the kitchen, in socked feet if need be!

-a fire-pit area with enough space 360 degrees around it for comfortable chairs.  The firepit area and informal patio flow into one another.  This is the shadiest and most private area of our yard.

-a native planting area.

-more native trees for shade.

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11 Comments

  1. Salma

    Looks great! I wish I could even visualize our area to diagram like that.
    I had imagined your firepit toward the far end of your property– it’s so nice to have a view of the beautiful lit house at night from the fire pit- but it’ll be equally beautiful where it is. Where’s that big shade tree at the far right of your property, when looking out the back of your house… Am I remembering wrong? Is the “lawn” going to have beds or trails? Knowing you, I’m sure it will. I want to see how you’re getting this done?? Take pics as it happens. Is this your same DG guy? I need a plan before I call him out. I’ve been itching to get some terracing done in the back. Can you source some good landscape architects for me, who are good with planning hillsides?? Can’t wait to see this in its final incarnation!

    • Thanks :) I will take lots of before and after pictures. I had a few ideas for the fire pit, one where you stated. I still go back and forth, but decided to keep the main entertaining area together so there is a ton of seating for mingling. There will also be a ton of soil dug out for the hardscape, so I am deciding on berms within that green space to keep the excess dirt on the property. Still not sure exactly where though. Shade tree? You mean the existing pecans? I am moving the deodar cedar…..???? Not sure …which one do you mean? :) – xericstyle oh P.S. I don’t have a relationship with any landscape architects – so wouldn’t feel comfortable making a blind referral. sorry gal! Maybe one day!!! :)

  2. Looks good to me. You’re dong the right thing in thinking about what the family need and then fitting it all together to give your overall plan. Looking forward to seeing it all come together. Christina

    • Thank you Christina, that means a lot! If you think of anything, please let me know :) -xericstyle

  3. Looks nice. Parking is something that is rarely thought about in advance, but often needed. I am forever wishing we had more parking area. Good luck with the process! I would imagine it will be a bit scary and exciting, all at the same time!

    • You hit the nail on the head! SOOOOOOOOooooooooo excited to finally have a backyard that works and that we can finally entertain in. BUT SCARED to make a mistake and waste $$$$$$$!!!!! I think the parking area is going to be so useful for us. We can also finally drive out of the driveway frontwards now that we have a place to back up and turn around in!!!! -xericstyle

  4. Desert Dweller

    I’m looking at your sketch, and I already have some simple comments. But I’ll need the following to really comment –
    1) no north arrow – which way is north?
    2) no scale – how wide is the lot or driveway, or how much is 10′ wide

    I remember the hedge (xylosma?) from a previous post, but you have garage access from a back alley? Nice.

    • Oh yikes! That would have been helpful….let me see…the xylosma is the green at the alley – alley is North. As far as scale… the driveway is 17 ft wide. I know my scale is off. I hope that helps, I am looking forward to your comments – and I understand if you can’t due to my terrible drafting skills. ;) LOVE the alley entrance, we are the only one that uses it so basically it is like our own long country driveway. As far as matters pertaining to maintenance, that is another story ;) – xericstyle

      • Desert Dweller

        Good enough – I’ll look at it with your sizes and direction. Don’t fret on those lacking – my own peers leave out the graphic scale, necessary in case the plan is resized – but sketching on a true-scaled plan will help lay out things to be more realistic.

    • Desert Dweller

      My thoughts – hope they make sense!
      1) Buffer the Frogfruit lawn area from driveway more – a more purposeful tree border, using 1 or 2 more native trees between 2 shown E of driveway?
      2) Do you need a native tree between xylosma hedge and vegetables?
      3) Fire pit / veggie garden / herb area – think how to relate all those things or create a division between those, creating different outdoor rooms…the fire pit and patio may need shade in summer evening, so perhaps a rustic arbor / pergola / ramada may shade…with fire pit shade, it could create unity or an outdoor room division or transition
      4) along lines of #3 – could end or side of veggie area relate to what’s done in #3?
      5) Native planting in front of hedge – how about a sunny winter patio out there as a focal point…could be DG, fire pit area, or some kind of pavers or stone.

      Can’t wait to see you figure it all out! If your front and house facade / roof renovations are any indicator, it will be nice.

      • SOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooo appreciate your wonderful suggestions. I can’t wait to think it all over – it has been a crazy week. It all makes sense – and I will keep you posted and ask more questions I am sure. Again, thank you very much. :) -xericstyle

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