My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

If you are just catching up in blogland after summer vacation, here’s the scoop: our family is in the process of moving and trying to get our new life and son’s school started in a new home in Seattle! We are very excited to be here, but logistics are sometimes challenging in a move. You can catch up on the news of why we decided to moveour moving day and our house hunting adventure.

Later next week I’ll finally be sharing a little video of our new house! I can’t wait to show you where we’ll be hanging out (for the next few years!) and share the vision (and projects!) we have for each room. It’s going to be fun. :)

But first, I thought I would catch up on a project I promised to show you earlier this summer from our old house. Our backyard makeover! You might remember our backyard when we first moved in. It started out as a barren, boring new construction space. No landscaping. No trees. No plants. No planting areas. No patios or walkways.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

Well, little by little, layer by layer, we added many of the things that were missing! While we didn’t complete the yard entirely and it wasn’t yet “perfect” (we still had plants we wanted to plant, and lots more rocks we wanted to bring in to finish lining the gravel patios and walkway, among other things we had planned), I’m excited that at least you can see the vision we had, and see how far it had come!

I snapped a few quick pics before we moved so you could see it!

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

Our yard wasn’t even fully fenced when we moved in; there was just one neighboring fence along the back. When Jack came into our family, we fenced in the whole backyard for his safety and enjoyment.

The fence was really our initial starting point. A fenced in yard really helps to define borders and gives a good backdrop for plants and furnishings.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

After the fence, our goal with our backyard was to divide the space up into different zones. At first the expanse of yard felt a bit overwhelming, even though it wasn’t a very big space. When you have nothing really to work with, it’s hard to know where to begin.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}DIY Firepit

You can read more about creating backyard zones here, but the first big “zone” project we completed was the big pea gravel patio near the middle of the yard, designed as an area for a firepit and furniture. From there it became easier to create more defined areas, connected by pea gravel and flagstone pathways for my secret garden, vegetable and herb garden spaces, a dining table, and our BBQ grill.

You can see one of the progress reports on the pea gravel patio here, to see what it looked like in process!

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}
We also had added some fun non-permanent decorative pieces like antique metal trellises, plant stands, pots, and of course furniture, which (most of them) we were able to bring to the new house. It was nice to feel like I didn’t have to leave everything behind!

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}
It was really hard for us to leave our plants, though. We had planted fruit trees and so many pretty flowers and shrubs. My husband said it felt like he was leaving his babies, ha! It’s funny how attached you become to a garden. Fortunately there are lots of established plants in our new yard so we won’t be starting from scratch this time! You’ll see the new house yard soon.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

I so enjoyed creating this little “secret garden.” It smelled like heaven, I had planted quite a few scented plants. It was still getting established, but it really had blossomed in this last season. You can see my post about the garden earlier this season, here. I will miss it so much, but I know I can create new little gardens in our new home.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

This was the view out our family room window. I was always delighted to see the garden from that angle. It felt so inviting! I enjoyed bringing my coffee out there in the mornings and just breathing in the fresh scent of the plants and flowers.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

These hydrangea trees were getting so big, I bought them at Costco a couple of years ago when they were just tiny! It was fun to watch them grow and become established.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

I really loved my roses, they smelled divine and it was fun to have some cutting flowers for bouquets.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

I usually filled this cement table by the fire pit with overflowing plants and herbs. It was pretty empty by the time I took this photo as we were moving, but I wanted you to see the flagstone walkway we had on the border of our pea gravel patio. We really loved the natural, unmanicured yet still charming feel of a pea gravel and flagstone patio.

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My son laid this flagstone for us in the pea gravel. It was fun to have our family out there working on it with us!

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

My Backyard Tour {Pea Gravel Patios, Flagstone & Secret Garden}

We enjoyed a few evenings this summer huddled around our fire pit, making s’mores and memories! Now that this season is coming to a close, we are grateful for the time we had to spend in our pretty backyard.

And now, onward to new backyard adventures!

PS. You can see another area of our yard, our back deck makeover here!

Related Posts:

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How to Design a Backyard (4 Essential Zones)

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Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

This post was created in partnership with TIKI® brand. All photos and opinions are my own!

I love creating special backyard spaces. My little “secret garden” corner of our yard is far from finished, but I dream of the day it will be bursting with plants so I can have a lush private oasis for entertaining and relaxing. But why wait for the perfect conditions? It really doesn’t take much to pull together the space you need for a fun and memorable party. Whether you have a large or small yard (or even a deck or patio!), a small corner can be easily transformed into a charming space for a party or even a quiet dinner for two!

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

Here are five must-haves to create a memorable party destination in your own backyard:

1) Tuck in seating and tables.

Tuck small tables, chairs and benches in corners or along a pathway to provide a quaint location to sit and serve appetizers, dinner, drinks or dessert.

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

2) Add flowers and plants.

If your yard or patio is looking a little barren, add a few plants to nestle in the seating area. A mix of plants and flowers of different heights will create interesting layers. Container gardens offer additional opportunities for flowers and greenery. Small vases can hold cut flowers on tables.

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

3) Set a warm inviting mood.

For an evening party, lighting will make your space more inviting and romantic!  TIKI® Brand torches and lanterns can line pathways and table tops to not only light the area, but create a festive party atmosphere to welcome your guests.

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

4) Color and Pattern

Add more color and pattern to liven up the yard with fun outdoor fabric pillows on chairs and benches.

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

5) Music

Turn on some music to set just the right mood for your festivity! Keep the volume low enough so your guests can easily chat, but loud enough to bring a little more energy to your party.

Set the Mood: Small Backyard Party for Two (& Giveaway)

Is your backyard ready for simple summer entertaining?

PS. These images were taken weeks ago and my garden is now bursting with flowers! YAY! I’ll have a secret garden update soon!

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