by Kacey Bradley November 18, 2020 2 min read

When you want to get away but can't leave town, prepare to relax at home. Pamper yourself by skipping the usual routine of watching TV or sitting at the computer by going outside. You can easily create a private backyard retreat that feels like a vacation spot with these eight simple tips.

1. Do Some Yardwork

Before you can upgrade your yard, you'll have to clean it up. Mow the lawn, trim the bushes and pull out any lingering weeds. Once you have a clean slate to work with, your retreat options are endless.

2. Decide on Your Theme

What do you consider relaxing? You might dream about traveling to the beach or surrounding yourself with nature in the mountains. After you determine what puts you at peace, surround yourself with it. Decorate your yard with seashells or vintage decor. These items will help set the mood whenever you enter the yard.

3. Grow New Trees

Many homeowners plant trees to create a privacy barrier between them and their neighbors. If you have space in your yard, pick a few leafy trees that are easy to grow and maintain. You can always join a local gardening club to get help from the experts if you're new to tree care.

4. Build a Living Wall

You can also add privacy to your home if you build a living wall that houses smaller plants on planks or a trellis. This is also the best option for renters who can't plant trees on the property or don't plan to live there long.

5. Add a Fire Pit

Adding a fire pit to your yard will allow you to use your new relaxing retreat all year. Make sure you gather the right supplies for whichever design plans you intend to follow. Sit by it on summer evenings and make s'mores or read next to the crackling fire on a fall afternoon.

6. Consider an Addition

Maybe your yard doesn't feel like an inviting place to spend time. If so, you could consider an addition like a patio or deck. Decks and patios add to the retreat vibe by designating a place to relax. It also gives you space for things like a grill or furniture.

7. Create Some Ambiance

Spas, resorts and other retreats are relaxing because they have the right ambiance. Create your own backyard sanctuary with small water features, like a trickling tabletop fountain on your porch table or a pond next to your garden. The sound of the water will ease your worries when you need a place to escape.

8. Plant Large Shrubs

Another alternative for long-term privacy is planting large shrubs. Anything that grows tall with lots of leaves will form a natural barrier between your property and the outside world if you learn how to care for it properly.

Sketch Your Ideas

It might be hard to picture your yard looking different than it does now, so sketch your ideas. Draw a patio with cozy furniture or a sprawling living wall. When you can visualize your retreat, you'll get the energy and drive to make it a reality.