Deck Landscaping Ideas

Rely on a deck to maximize the outdoor living area of your landscape.

Everything In This Slideshow

  • Curtain Call

    Dressed up with details, a deck's design offers minimalist style.

    • A simple tieback draws drapes out of the way; if needed, they can be released to enclose the deck.
    • Using the same paint color from house to deck and stairs unifies the structures.
    • Containers, wall art, and fabrics add brilliant pops of color.
    • A mid-height wall provides a place to grow taller-growing plants.
    • Suspended from the pergola overhead, a series of geometric candleholders adds a sculptural element to the deck.
  • Outdoor Delights

    Foliage and a nature-inspired color scheme add charm to this deck.

    • Upright materials, such as lattice, offer a good place to suspend window boxes or hanging baskets.
    • Instead of building an overhead structure, put outdoor fabric to use by creating a simple canopy for sun protection.
    • Decorative elements adorn a back wall, creating a focal point.
    • Vertical lengths of lattice stand-in for a more obtrusive fence.
    • Turned at an angle, flooring supplies a visual counterpoint to the deck's otherwise straightforward geometry.
  • Well-Done Deck

    A small circular space connected to a house supplies a perfect spot to read and rest.

    • A wood floor offers textural and color contrasts with the stone base.
    • Railings may not be necessary for decks located a few feet above grade.
    • Decorative metal lanterns repeat the gentle curve of the deck space.
    • Since this deck has no railing, a series of containers planted with vigorous blooms and foliage provides a less formal edge to the space.
    • Tall grasses (planted in containers) screen the view and complement the color of the wood floor.
  • Mixed Materials

    A unique railing embellishes an otherwise ordinary wood deck.

    • Tucked between support beams, a powder-gray railing adds a minimalist accent to this elevated deck.
    • Beaded board turned vertically shields the space under the deck from view and critters.
    • Plenty of no-fuss, budget-friendly options exist for adding shade, including draping outdoor fabric.
    • Suspended off the metal railing, an orange shelf adds a pop of color and a display spot for an artful container.
    • Lights in the same shade of gray as the railing add subtle illumination for safe ascent of the stairs.
  • Give Me Shelter

    Plants and an overhead structure enclose a deck.

    • Include a few hooks on support beams for hanging baskets.
    • A roof over the couch offers a bit of shelter for a section of the deck.
    • A chevron-pattern "wall" creates enclosure and protects the deck from neighboring views.
    • The deck's safety rail -- with wood pieces placed at a slant -- draws design inspiration from the patterned wall.
    • Lifting containers up on wire supports also eliminates the need to protect the deck's floor from water damage.
  • Modern Maxim

    A stylish deck proves that less really is more.

    • Sections of a deck can provide varying amounts of privacy, depending on your deck's use and view from the yard. Here, slatted wood sections offer semi-seclusion to the back section.
    • While the view of the yard from the deck is important, the view of the deck from inside the house matters, too. Large sliding doors offer an alluring picture of a sleek fireplace.
    • Slim materials on the deck's "ceiling" deftly manage the transition from house to open yard.
    • Maximize the connection between inside and out by placing the deck at the same grade as the house.
    • Outdoor lights indicate the shift from the deck to a small paved patio.
  • Soft Ceiling

    Contemporary furniture creates modern style in this unpretentious space.

    • Utilize outdoor fabric in a variety of ways. Here, for instance, wide lengths offer a soft screen from the overhead sun.
    • Vertical metal railings supply subtle contrast to the mostly wood deck.
    • Furniture placement can create "rooms" on a deck, such as the eating and relaxing areas here.
    • Consider planting containers with tall ornamental grasses; they're easy-care and provide screening, too.
    • The colors and style of the low-slung furniture and a rug in the seating area offer relaxed comfort and outdoor durability.
  • Top to Bottom

    Curves meander from one level to the next in this urban space.

    • A deck can be made up of a series of interconnected areas; this one has four spaces leading from the home's second story to ground level.
    • Deck height is a good way to conquer the confines of a narrow, urban space.
    • In such a slim spot, use curves to break up the rigid geometry.
    • To connect upper deck spaces with lower ones, a section of lattice leads from the top dining area to the lower relaxing space.
    • Lattice -- planted with a vine -- on top of a mid-height brick wall defines the deck and screens it from view.
  • Under the Shelter of a Tree

    Detailing takes this deck from ordinary to extraordinary.

    • Horizontal detailing on the screened section of the home's exterior spaces repeats in the multiple-level deck detailing.
    • While smaller than some, this deck space has lots of visual interest, with several levels for a variety of experiences.
    • If a deck is built around a tree, leave enough free space to allow room for the tree's growth.
    • The upper level offers room for a collection of pretty containers.
    • The deck's design details offer inspiration for extras in the yard, such as the mid-height wall that helps screen the space from view.
  • 10 of 11

    Space for Friends

    A deck offers impromptu spaces for gatherings.

    • Before you include a freestanding fire pit on a deck, make sure that you've chosen one that offers fire protection for the structure, such as a metal base and cover.
    • Dress up simple deck structures with the addition of built-in planting boxes.
    • Freestanding containers placed at corners and on stairs help to define deck borders for increased intimacy.
    • In a pinch, wide stairs from the deck can provide additional seating.
    • Since this deck isn't attached to a house or other structure, trees and shrubs provide additional privacy.
  • Next Slideshow Fall Landscaping Ideas

    Fall Landscaping Ideas

    See how two great gardeners -- one on the East Coast and one on the West -- created knock-your-socks-off fall yards -- and learn how you can do the same.
    Begin Slideshow »

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