7 Best Ideas to Transform Your Backyard into a Zen Oasis

Last updated on April 17th, 2024 at 10:51 am

Your yard is your own little slice of the planet. Make it an awesome Zen oasis.

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Although you can build a sports field on your property, the true value of a garden is the ability to have a place to rest on a lazy Sunday afternoon. One such exterior design idea is a Zen garden. The elements of this garden are perfect for establishing a private oasis in your very own backyard.

1. Paths that are Everything but Straight

If you wish to enjoy the comfort of your backyard, you shouldn’t be burdened by rules of any sort. This rule applies to landscaping as well, as a Zen garden is best known for curing shapes and quirky outlines.

For instance, the pathways in the backyard should wind through the property instead of going in a straight line. Your mind associates straight lines with office space, so you cannot unwind with work in mind.

Elderly man in the backyard enjoying the fire pit and marshmallows during an outdoor gathering.
A fire pit is an easy 1-day project that really makes your backyard an outdoor living space

2. Staying out Late: A DIY Fire Pit

It would be a pity not to use the backyard after dark, as this is the time when it’s most pleasing to sit outside in spring or autumn. However, it can get chilly in the evening, so it would be great if you built an open heart. You can build a solid fire pit on your own for well under 100 dollars!

3. Seating Options

No garden is complete without a comfortable sitting area. The garden set usually sits at the deck but you can diversify seating options. If there is a garden, then a wooden bench is a great idea for enjoining the scent of flowers. On the other hand, a swing or a hammock is perfect for more active rest, so to say.

4. The Color of Tranquility

Apart from patches of green, the wall of the house is the biggest colored area in the backyard. Washed-out colors and a façade that is peeling away have no room in a Zen garden.

You should rent a cherry picker from a company like Universal Mobile Tower Hire and repaint the whole back wall, from the gutters to the drains! While you’re (up) there, use the opportunity to hang some decorations, such as lanterns.

5. Rows of Red Lanterns

Apart from the aforementioned fire pit, there is another “fiery” addition to your garden. Namely, hanging red lanterns in rows across the yard is the best Zen decoration you’ll ever have.

Of course, paper lanterns pose a fire risk, so you’ll need to be extra careful. However, red lanterns are worth the risk, as the flickering light inside them will turn the humblest of backyards into an oasis at night.

6. A Day at the Beach

As you might have noticed by now, the goal of a Zen garden is to imitate nature in every way possible. Instead of travelling to a far-away seaside resort, you can go to the beach behind your home in summer. When you place a large but shallow sandbox, both children and adults will have hours of fun.

A young woman enjoying wine and a cheese tray in a cozy backyard with a table and umbrella on a deck
A pond with the sound of flowing water makes for a perfect Zen garden

7. Building a Fish Pond

A day at the beach would be a waste were it not for water. Adults like Jacuzzis, while splash pads are more suitable for children. However, if you are after serenity, then a fish pond is the right way to go. In fact, a pond populated with Koi fish is the most recognizable element of a Zen garden.

Nearly all postcards from Japan feature an image of a fish pond coupled with a tiny footbridge. Don’t worry about the size of the pond, as size doesn’t matter. What matters is that you have a water feature in your backyard, so the sound of water will soothe your nerves.

Your backyard cannot be transformed into a Zen oasis. The 7 improvements listed above should be implemented consecutively, so you don’t overstrain your home improvement budget. However, once you hang the last lantern, you won’t be able to recognize your new Zen yard!

Patrick Adams is a freelance writer and rock-blues fan. When he is not writing about home improvement, he loves to play chess, watch basketball, and play his guitar. More than anything, he loves to spend his time in his garage, repairing appliances and creating stuff from wood.

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