Fake Dry River Bed Xeriscape Design
Backyard xeriscaping ideas using a fake dry river for drainage and atmosphere
This final picture is a good shot from the back porch across the fake river bed to the corner retaining wall. While this dry river creates a visual effect that fits with the xeriscape design and attemts to represent a real desert scene , it is actually created here for more than just cosmetic purposes. It actually serves the purpose of drainage and holding excess water until it can drain into the ground. In enclosed backyards like this, drainage can be an issue.
From this view you can also see the retaining wall in the corner. It's very clear how this second level creates interest. It would be dull and flat without the wall.
This wall worked well here because of the existing wall backing it. However, if I used it in a front yard without a backing, it could work just as well. It would simply be a matter of descending and feathering the backing dirt into the rest of the yard. It would look great in a front yard with a tree planted in the middle of it, covered in lawn, a flower bed, or all of the above.
Again, this yard gets its feel and atmosphere from all elements combined together. This southwest desig style goes hand in hand with the practice of xeriscaping (water wise gardening). The low water use plants and rustic native elements work well together to give this a southwest feel.
If you want to know more about the specifics of xeriscaping see principles of xeriscaping. If you would like to see more design ideas see ideas for xeriscaping. There are more free designs and another fake dry river bed like this to get ideas from.