If you've seen the albums on decorating and landscaping sites, you know how much a walkway or a canopy can bring together your backyard. Luckily, many of these home and gardening staples are easy to do yourself. If you have a shovel, a hammer, a saw, and an afternoon, you can finish one of these projects.
Having a paved walkway from your back door to your patio brings a certain elegance to your backyard. With the advent of pavers, you don't have to ruin your back placing and leveling hundreds of bricks in order to make this dream a reality. Depending on how long you want the walkway, you might only need a few pavers to complete the project. You can choose from several different interesting stone varieties to bring visual interest to your space.
A canopy is a great way to bring some shade, keeping your family or guests cool during the summer months. Canopies can range from intricate architectural pieces to simple canvas-and-pole designs. For the latter example, four poles or beams driven into the ground and a piece of thick, water-resistant canvas are all you need. You can attach the canvas to the poles using a hammer and nails, or you can peruse your local hardware store for rings, tacks, or ties to create a unique hanger.
If nothing says relaxation like a nice drink with friends around an open fire, then a fire pit is the perfect addition to the patio. After you choose the spot in your yard for the pit, dig a hole about two feet deep, three or four feet wide, and as round as you can make it. You can use bricks or stones to line the hole, creating a fireproof barrier. Offset another layer of brick or stone around the rim of the pit for extra fire protection and a ledge. Use extra dirt to pack in any cracks in the bricks or between the bricks and the edge of the hole. Fill with your favorite kindling and light. Marshmallows are optional.
Plant Bed Landscaping
If you already have some plants lining your patio or in your front yard, a little bit of landscaping will greatly enhance the natural beauty of the plants as well as add an attractive design element to your home. Depending on the types of plants that you have, you might want to consider adding rocks or wood chips to the plant beds. Bedding like this will help with plant drainage and prevent birds from attacking plant root systems. Lining the bed with larger rocks, pavers, or bricks in a contrasting color will complete the finished look of the bed.
When it comes to DIY projects, simplicity is key. These projects should be relatively easy to complete and take no more than an afternoon to prepare. They'll enhance your backyard or patio for family and friends and ultimately increase the value of your home.