Softening Courtyard Walls Into The Garden

Courtyards can most often feel cramped and confined due to being surrounded by walls. Even larger patios that are enclosed by tall walls and buildings can feel closed in. And more often than not, this is more a result of poor use of space and planning than of the amount of space available.

Vertical surfaces can be a limiting and confining element as well as an opportunity for decoration. Some courtyards are incomplete without the aged and established appearance that lush trailing plants on the walls and in containers can create. An expanse of blank wall can be softened, blended into the rest of the garden, and made a part of the garden rather than a barrier.

Creating displays of decor, statuary, fountains, or even planters like the one in this picture can use a blank expanse of wall as a frame while also breaking up a long expanse of blank confining barrier.

Successfully designing courtyards and patios requires attention to access, use, and plant choice behavior. And because of the size limitations, it's also helpful to refer to the design principles of small gardens which also focuses on these areas. Simply knowing how big the plants you plant will grow is a most helpful piece of information to help keep your courtyard from being overgrown.

courtyard wall planting ideas

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