From Flat to Fantastic: 3 Steps to A Beautiful Backyard

Transforming a large, flat yard is easy when you focus on building a beautiful foundation and adding vertical elements to give the space definition. Here are tips on how to bring your outdoor space from boring to beautiful.


Step 1: Work from the Ground Up

Transform a large flat space by installing concrete pavers to create a patio for relaxing or entertaining. Paver patios can be installed at grade or atop a slope. A raised patio like the one shown below will work in either of these conditions, and is a perfect way to replace an old wooden deck while adding height to flat ground.


Highland Stone® wall system; Slaton Plus™ tumbled paving system


Step 2: Add Interest with Accessories

A paver patio will quickly become a gathering place because of its functionality and low maintenance. To add creative flair to the flat space, consider these accents:

  • Freestanding walls provide instant height, beauty and seating.

Highland Stone® wall system


  • Built-in planters filled with flowers and grasses soften a paver patio.

Fresco™ wall system; Slaton Plus™ paving system with Charleston™ paving system border


  • Columns act as stylish spots for light fixtures or plant pots.

Brisa® wall system; Rinn™ Medino® paving system with Slaton Plus™ paving system border


Step 3: Build a Structure

Built structures are popular design elements for flat landscapes. Arbors and pergolas can define spaces and help make an outdoor area truly feel like an extension of your home.


Diamond Stone Cut® wall system


With the right elements, a flat yard can be taken to new heights. Find more hardscapes inspiration by downloading our 2014 Landscape Collection catalog or visiting the Anchor Block Company Facebook page.


Trendspotting at the St. Paul Home & Patio Show

Home and garden shows are always a great way to learn about the newest products and trends.

Anchor Block Company partnered with The Home Depot, Holm & Olson and Sculptured Earth at this year’s St. Paul Home & Patio Show from February 14 – 17, 2013, to help inspire homeowners with their spring projects. Here are a few outdoor living trends featured at the show.

Fire Pits and Fireplaces

The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) 2013 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends survey listed outdoor fire pits or fireplaces as the most in-demand item this year – and they were a popular item at the show as well. While fireplace installations should be done by a landscape contractor, products such as the Fresco™ fire pit kit are suitable for professionals and do-it-yourselfers alike.


Fresco™ Fire Pit Kit

Water Features

Decorative water elements – including fountains and waterfalls – are also predicted to be popular this year. If you’re short on space, don’t cross this feature off your list. A simple but striking fountain built with Brisa® freestanding wall blocks can be as small as 4 feet in radius.


Brisa® Freestanding Wall System


Columns are as functional as they are decorative. As a wall end, they welcome planters, lighting or even a mailbox; standing alone, they can be used to create benches, pub tables and more.

Fresco™ Wall System

Fresco™ Wall System

If you missed the St. Paul show there are more opportunities on the spring calendar, including the Minneapolis Home + Garden Show, which runs February 27 – March 3, 2013, and the Bachman’s Landscape Design Show on March 9, 2013.

For more outdoor living inspiration, be sure to visit the Anchor Block Company website, which is full of project photos, installation tips and more. Whatever inspiration you find to make your landscape dreams come true, click over to our Facebook page and tell us about what you discover.