Masonry Mastery: Side yards (simple but can useful and possibly elegant)
Came across this in my old learning days and always reminded me of the small and overlooked touches that can leave lasting impression.
The Following is an excerpt from the Book "Patio and Stone" by Tom Wilhite on Side Yards on page 197-198.
" Side Yards
Side yards, even more so than driveways, or probably the most overlooked areas in home Landscapes. Typically narrow and Shady passages leading from the front yard to the back, they can be a design challenge. A simple solution that works in almost any narrow, Shady Side yard is a stepping stone path winding between low maintenance, shade loving plants like ferns, pastas, hellebores, boxwood, and Oak Leaf hydrangea, perhaps interspersed with a few small Boulders.
If there is room, consider adding a few small understory trees like Japanese maple, Stewart ear, or flowering dogwood. Vines are also a good choice for small spaces like these, whether trained on to offense or climbing a couple of arching trellises at either end of the space.
In a slightly larger side yard, you can pay part or all of its with gravel, flagstones, or cut stone, and use it in a more utilitarian way. A small garden shed for tools and supplies might fit nicely, as could a compost bin or potting bench.
A side yard can also be just the spot for a little hidden retreat outfitted with a comfortable chair and small table smuggled into a corner next to a fountain, a hammock swing above fragrance groundcovers, or a bench placed along a wall opposite of flowering Vine trained against a fence.
Practical matters to keep in mind include allowing space and access for utility meters, which are often located inside yards. Also keep in mind the view from the house, as windows are likely to afford a close-up view of the Landscaping. It's smart as well to make sure you leave enough room in your side yard design for a wheelbarrow to pass through easily. "
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