Garden Retreats: Peaceful Outdoor Sanctuaries We Love

"Getting away" in the backyard can be as easy as adding a seating area to your garden. Get inspired by these charming design ideas, and create a personal outdoor oasis of your own.

  • Treetop Hammock Hanging Daybed

    Shady Garden

    An ultra shady backyard with low hanging trees is the perfect spot for a swinging daybed and hammock. Design by Jamie Durie

  • Rustic Relaxation

    Scenic Views

    Landscape designer Paul Wrona created this backyard retreat, including a trickling waterfall, with stunning mountainous views in mind.

  • Fireside Retreat

    On its own irregular bluestone patio, this intimate outdoor space features a custom masonry fireplace, lush plantings, rustic wood pergolas and plenty of cozy seating for guests. Design by Barry Block

  • Reclaimed Garden Set Complement Cottage Garden

    Tea in the Garden

    Nothing beats tea and breakfast in the midst of lush, hand-grown florals.

  • Tucked Away

    Landscape designer Katrina Leonidov Fairchild added a hammock right below Aspen trees to create a relaxing alfresco experience.

  • Walkway Under Trellises

    English Garden

    Landscape designer Jamie Durie brought the look of a rambling English garden to the United States. White arbors line the stone pathway and feature climbing roses, birch trees, pears and crepe myrtles.

  • Private Dining

    Just off the main deck, landscape designer Barry Block created a hidden nook that features a private sitting area surrounded by an array of colorful flowers.

  • Sweet Retreat

    Hidden Hammock

    Dense plantings create a private retreat in a small backyard. Designer Katrina Leonidov Fairchild slightly elevated the area, added a small lawn and surrounded it with pomegranates, salvias, a chitalpa tree, bougainvillea and other colorful plants.

  • Intimate Courtyard

    A small side entry is transformed into usable garden space with a stylish pergola that blocks the view of second-story neighbors and creates sufficient shade for the large windows. Design by Pamela Berstler

  • flowers abound in whimsical backyard garden

    Bohemian Lounge

    Landscape designer Pam Berstler nestled this sandstone bench under the shade of pittosporum trees. Creating the sense of comfortable enclosure is key to a successful garden nook. The wall, adorned with artwork, defines the personal space.

  • Surrounded by Greenery

    Roses, butterfly bush, Japanese maple and a vine-swathed fence give this patio privacy and create a bright oasis for the backyard. Landscape designer Pam Berstler used four redwood posts and decomposed granite flooring to define a sitting area within the small garden.

  • Cozy Garden Sitting Area

    View for Two

    There's only room for two in this dreamy, cottage-style garden. Design by Virginia Rockwell

  • True Outdoor Room

    A small meditation room looks out on a colorful perennial bed. It's easy to spend a few hundred dollars on plants when outfitting a garden room, so stick with long-lived perennials. Design by Joan Grabel

  • flagstone pathway leads to garden bench

    Along the Path

    This small garden maximizes usable space and creates the feeling of a tropical hideaway. Design by Heather Hardcastle

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