How to Turn Your City Backyard Into an Oasis

Tips for upgrading your city backyard

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Whether you live in Boston, New York, or even Cincinnati, personal greenspace is hard to come by if you live in the city. If you are one of the lucky ones with a little bit of a backyard and are looking for ideas on how to transform that small space into an urban oasis, we can help. Below, we’ve shared a list of tips to make the most with what you have, courtesy of Jon Gorey for the Boston Globe. Good luck!

Pergola Patio Project

Patios, plants, and pergolas

Gorey writes that most folks are shying away from concrete slabs of the past and opting for permeable pavers instead. Also, because there is a limited amount of space, Gorey writes that you should consider incorporating seating, such as a retaining wall or raised planter, into the landscape construction to eliminate the need for a lot of patio furniture. When it comes to plants, think layers and ground cover as well as low-maintenance native perennials. For shade (you are living in a concrete jungle after all), use an umbrella, pergola or single shade tree. Other patio favorites include a chiminea or built-in fire pit, says Gorey.

Gardening in Backyard

Backyard bounty

Gorey says that backyards can be “incredibly productive” for “sustainability-minded foodies who enjoy getting their hands dirty.” Two four by eight beds have been said to fully replace a person’s produce needs for a year, writes Gorey. If soil richness is a concern, grow your edibles in pots, milk crates, or raised garden beds. For herbs and greens, you’ll need about four hours of sunshine. For tomatoes and peppers, at least six and half hours. Another idea? A backyard beehive which can “give your garden a boost and brings a yard to life.” Beehives can actually thrive in the city, but they need to be properly managed, says Gorey.

For the rest of Gorey’s tips, click here to read his article in its entirety.

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