Deck Landscaping Ideas

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

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.

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.

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