Garden Privacy Ideas that Incorporate Landscaping and Hardscaping

Add privacy to your yard to create a gorgeous getaway. Check out these landscaping ideas for creating a private, secluded yard.

Add some seclusion to your yard with landscaping tips and tricks. You can opt to rely on hardscaping like fences and pergolas or use privacy plants to create a screen garden. Here are privacy options that will add coziness and style to any yard, so explore and find what will make your yard feel complete.

1. A Tall Fence is a Good Garden Privacy Idea

Decorative and valuable hardscape pieces and plantings soften the lines of a towering fence with this garden privacy idea. Simple details, including a wide cap piece, break up an overwhelming facade on this extra-tall barrier. A decorative latticework hung on the fence is an outdoor-ready, artistic element. A low stone bench, with river rock collected on top and at the base, offers an additional seating spot. Lights near the bottom of the fence provide a safety element and ambiance for nighttime gatherings. Groundcover and a mid-height tree soften the geometric lines of the paved seating area.

Keep your landscape private and secure with more of our tips.

2. Open Up For Privacy

A stripped-down fence and airy plants offer subtle garden screening in this front yard privacy idea. Two oversize urns planted with rhododendrons mark the transition from public to private space. The open latticework fence offers a discrete but unmistakable barrier; bright green paint and wood framing give it a distinctive character. Double doors are a steadfast signal of a secluded area; the latticework details and wood inserts neatly complement the contrasting fence pieces. Lacy, branching trees gracefully arch up and over the decorative garden screen panels for a soft, protective canopy. A wispy groundcover of sweet woodruff softens the space between the gravel pathway and the fence.

3. Use Lattice as a DIY Garden Privacy Screen

A privacy fence and carefully chosen plants insulate a side yard. A climbing vine—here, Boston ivy—softens hardscape edges and adds another layer of privacy. A door is a distinctive, uninterrupted signal of private space; fitted with a small section of latticework, it includes a decorative element that repeats the design in the fence. While the fence’s woodwork signals a secluded landscape, the lattice’s open weave filters both sunlight and views. Low-growing shrubs, such as a dwarf globe blue spruce, provide a way to maintain a year-round softscape barrier. A carefully chosen selection of plants and materials—river rock, patterned pavers, variegated hostas, black-eyed Susans—offers low-maintenance beauty.

4. Perfect Pairing

Plants and a fence work together to shield this front yard from outside eyes beautifully and practically. A pergola can be a decorative piece and a privacy element; here, it’s integrated into a fence. A few shrubs and plants, including coleus, soften the narrow stretch of space between the pathway and the house. Wisteria (an excellent privacy screen plant) works with the more substantial privacy elements, including the stucco fence, to offer a second screening layer. A wide, shallow container on top of the pergola contains trailing plants. Two materials in the fence—stucco and wrought iron break up what could be a static facade.

5. An Artful Fence

Distinctive features play up the elegance of a private patio. Most every fence needs edges and cap pieces; here, an edge shaped into a curve and a cap piece in the form of a pyramid offers visual accents. Several sizes of similarly styled containers, planted with sunny zinnias, can be moved into different positions within a secluded nook to give another layer of privacy. A trimmed boxwood shrub supports the fence style and closes the gap between public and private spaces. Trees, including Japanese maple, are planted close to the house and fence and enclose the area overhead. Richly stained wood doors break up a large expanse of stucco.

6. Ready For Roses

A fence offers seclusion and space for pretty plants to bloom. Architectural details on hardscape elements can add visual interest to privacy elements. Here, a gentle curve keeps the eye moving along the top of the fence. Rambling plants like this climbing rose are an appealing way to soften walls. The tight weave of the open latticework fence screens the view while allowing for good air movement and filtering light to the semiprivate yard. Grass that runs right next to a wall can prove challenging to mow; this backyard includes a wide berth covered in gravel to separate the lawn and fence edge. Tall privacy trees and an elevated urn mark the end of the fence and continue the separation between public and private.

7. Create a Restful Nook

Use plants to cocoon a garden spot. This inexpensive backyard privacy idea uses existing natural elements. Trees are often used as a canopy over a quiet nook. Here, a pergola serves the same purpose. In place of a heavy wood look, a delicate metal DIY privacy fence shields two chairs and a table. Plants can complement each other and hardscape elements. In this nook, a burgundy Japanese maple pops against the yellow stucco and picks up the colors in the chair fabric. Lower growing plants, including a climbing hydrangea, envelop the seating area, giving the setting softscape “sides.” Pretty blooms, including astilbe, get a boost by being planted in an elevated container.

8. Fanciful Fence

This garden privacy idea dresses up a barrier with accents. Mixing materials heightens visual interest in a mostly hardscape section of the garden. Here, pavers combine with river rocks and shredded wood for a distinctive edge. Garden ornaments adorn the fence, including an imaginative birdhouse planter and a series of bright purple paintings. A pair of metalwork obelisks provides a spot for fast-growing privacy plants to clamor up, while staggered landscape elements, such as a raised bed, offer delightful garden details. A tall wood fence gets a pick-me-up with a simple latticework top.

9. Casual Corner

A few plants and accents create a pretty, private nook. Instead of continuing a paved section of the garden to a privacy fence, a small planted nook offers a focal point and a softer edge. A cluster of hydrangeas, distinctive because of foliage and big blooms, takes the focus off the functional but monotone fence.

A showy urn, set on a stone pedestal, moves the eye from the corner of the fence toward the garden. Repeating patterns make the difference in even the simplest of landscapes. Here, the angles of the pavers are replicated in the angles of the corner. Two hanging baskets, tucked against the backdrop of the fence, pick up the color of the blooms in the containers and planted in the ground.

10. Privacy Plants in Place of a Fence

Clusters of mid-height to tall growers offer an appealing alternative to hardscape elements. Most homeowners rely on hardscape elements for privacy, but in this secluded nook, oversize ornamental grasses backed by larger shrubs and trees take the place of a fence. When the grasses are cut back in the spring, evergreen magnolia and Alaskan cedar maintain structural interest.

A large water fountain helps filter out noise from neighbors, making the yard feel more private. While taller plants offer a natural “back” to the seating area, intermittent placement of midsize growers supplies a lower screen. An array of plants in oranges, light greens, and purples, such as coralbells, creates an attractive color palette.

11. Privacy Hedge Plants

In this backyard sanctuary, an outdoor fireplace backs up to tall and lush hedges. The green spreads across the ground between square concrete pavers for a luxe look. Potted plants adorn the hearth for added texture and color.

There are many garden privacy ideas for hedge plants, but looking at specific varieties is essential. American arborvitae is an upright evergreen with flat sprays of scalelike needles. ‘Techny’ is among the most popular varieties; it grows 10 to 15 feet tall, making it a good choice for a hedge or screen. Boxwood’s ability to withstand frequent shearing and shaping into perfect geometric forms makes it ideal for formal clipped hedges. Letting it grow tall provides a great privacy hedge. Some varieties grow to 20 feet tall.