7 Backyard Ideas on a Budget


An attractive outdoor living space doesn’t have to be expensive. There are many budget-friendly ways to make your backyard appealing and ready for summertime entertaining. If you’re looking for ways to spend more imagination than money on your home’s outdoor areas, try some of these easy backyard ideas on a budget:

1. Mix and Match Furniture

Outdoor furniture doesn’t have to be perfectly matched to look good. Oftentimes, single chairs and tables are less expensive than ones found in sets. Don’t be afraid to group diverse chairs around a table, and tie them all together with the same paint color and inexpensive seat cushions or throw pillows in a matching pattern.

2. Add Outdoor Lighting

Think about how you can amp up your outdoor lighting. Consider solar powered lighting for energy bill savings. If you don’t have a budget for lighting, use candles and tiki torches to add brightness and ambiance. Twinkle lights aren’t just for Christmas – you can string these in trees, shrubbery, and along fences and deck railing to add decorative flair.

3. Paint Your Own Pots

Buy plain terra cotta pots and paint them to reflect your outdoor color scheme and style. Use your outdoor pillow fabric for inspiration, or choose from a wide range of decorative paints that can make custom textures and finishes easy to apply. Chalk paints and glow-in-the-dark paints are fun options.

4. Design Your Own Chalk Artwork

Speaking of chalk, break out some sidewalk chalk at your next outdoor party and let your guests apply their artistic talents to your patio and fence. The sidewalk chalk artwork can be washed away with a garden hose or the next rainfall, but you can enjoy it until then.

5. Collect Bottles for Colorful Outdoor Decorations

Wine bottles and olive oil bottles are great cheap backyard ideas. Wash them, remove the labels, and you have instant outdoor vases and candle holders. Line them up on railing tops and windowsills, or group them on tables. Or, display them on a bottle tree that you’ve made from a post and rods.

6. Repurpose Old Items

Browse antique shops and flea markets with an eye toward unusual things that can be used in your yard. A ladder can be painted and turned into a plant stand. An old barrel can make an end table. Cable spools make great outdoor tables. Kitchen stools can provide extra seating. Old chandeliers can make attractive outdoor fixtures, either electrified or with candles.

7. Use Color Wisely

Blooming plants can be expensive, but you don’t have to have many to make a splash. Instead of planting full flower beds, look at your outdoor space carefully to determine where you really need a pop of color. Place pots or single blooming perennial plants in those places to get the biggest bang for your buck.

Next > Lessons Learned from Hiring a Landscape Contractor

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