31st Dec2013


Transform Your Backyard With These DIY Projects

by Dinah Wulf

Transform Your Backyard With These DIY Projects, written by Guest Author Melissa Jordon

Some people ignore their backyard and it becomes just a place to let the dog run and the kids play. With these easy DIY projects, you can turn your backyard into a place to entertain and relax. Once completed, these additions will look masterpieces from a professional, however all are projects you can do yourself in a weekend!

Backyard Fire Pit

Photo by ACM Design Architects via Flickr

One of the most popular additions to the backyard is the fire pit, according to the DIY Network. A built-in, stone fire pit can create a central relaxation spot for the whole family. Whether it’s toasting marshmallows or warming yourself on a cool evening, it is an addition everyone can enjoy year-round.

Build a square or round fire pit, whichever fits the yard and landscape. A good size to start with is a round pit that is two feet tall and five feet in diameter. The interior area will be three feet in diameter.

Lay a concrete foundation for your fire pit that is six inches deep with an outer wall 12 inches wide. To allow for proper drainage, leave a small cement-free hole in the very center. After the foundation has set for 24 hours, build the outer stone wall. Select a natural stone or prepared brick material and use mortar to lay the stones around the circle. Line the interior of your fire pit with fire bricks and top with a layer of smooth, flat stones to create a polished look. Finally, place a layer of river rocks on the bottom to complete the fire pit.

Backyard Gazebo

Photo by ARNOLD Masonry and Concrete via Flickr

Build a simple gazebo in your backyard to create a shady place to sit and relax with your spouse. A standard option includes an eight-foot by eight-foot wooden frame and can be completed in just a weekend. Find some simple project plans that include all materials and steps on DIYNetwork.com.

Backyard Stone Paths

Photo by woodleywonderworks via Flickr

A natural stone path can accentuate the landscape and create a focal point to the real highlight of your backyard space: the pool. Use some simple flat stones to place size to 12 inches apart in the grass or gravel leading up to your pool, then dig down far enough that each stone sits just one inch above the soil. In rainy areas, a gravel base may be required to set a stronger foundation. Once the stones are set into place make sure they’re level. When you’re satisfied with the stones’ placement fill in the spaces with gravel or ground cover. This will draw the eye to the pool area, so take special care to ensure your pool is in tip-top shape. Find a new cover from PoolProducts.com and make sure your deck is free of debris.

About Melissa Jordan

Missy started blogging from home after earning two bachelor’s degrees (one in English and one in history) the same year the Great Recession hit. The economy’s picking up, but she like the freelance lifestyle and doubts she’ll look for a “real” job anytime soon.

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Dinah has a Master of Arts Degree in Speech Communication from California State University Fullerton. She is a Curator for Style Me Pretty Living, a Blogger at Earth911 and GMC Trade Secrets, and a member of Martha’s Circle. Her website, DIY Inspired has been recognized by Mashable, Parenting.com, and Circle of Moms as a Most Creative Blog. Dinah was featured on Linqia’s Community Spotlight, as an influential community leader.

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