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Top 20 Courtyard Ideas – Garden Design

20 Courtyard Ideas for your inspiration. It’s important to create a visual and appealing link between the inside and the outside when creating the perfect courtyard space.

You really want to be creating a space that moves seamlessly from area to area. 

Thoughtful placement of outdoor lighting can create dramatic scenes and encourage interest in the hours beyond dusk. At minimum using decorative candle holders and oil lamps will create romantic settings and associated feelings. 

You don’t want to do anything to garish or contrast colours too much. Aim for continuity in your planning whether that’s subtle tones with paint colours or using planting setups that entice. 

Of course a central bold feature is a good idea – as well as the appropriate use of containers and planting arrangements.

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Courtyard ideas

It feels vibrant and lush. This courtyard is inviting to step into and enticing for hushed conversations.

Courtyard Design Ideas

Courtyard design ideas
Pea gravel is a favoured surface for small courtyards such as this. The design is simple and minimalistic. It dissolves moods.
The crisp white walls are an inviting place for the ivy to climb and barring a stormy day this space creates clarity.
The Japanese maple tree sits perfectly and captures cascading sunbeams.


Courtyard Inspiration

Courtyard Inspiration
These tall steel doors provide a level of security whilst still enabling excellent viewing of the well landscaped garden outside.

Small Courtyard with Colour

Courtyard Seating Area

Sometimes a small courtyard can be created at the end of a garden area. A place to rest in between watering during those long hot summer months.

Lavender Courtyard

Lavender Courtyard

No, this isn’t a photoshop experiment!

The ancient feel transports you back a few hundred years. Lavender replenishes itself each year and your view would be much the same as those before you.

Swimmingpool Courtyard

Swimmingpool Courtyard

Using metallic wall art is becoming popular. Advances in laser cutting mean that designs can be cut and produced relatively easy. This small pool within this courtyard is inviting for a cool dip.

There’s no doubt about that!

Inviting Seating Area in Courtyard


There’s nothing out of place in this courtyard. The enclosure is inviting for simply sitting and relaxing whilst enjoying a drink.

It’s not comfortable but for an hour or two – yes.


Courtyard Hanging Ferns

Courtyard Hanging Ferns

The hanging ferns create a sense of enclosure and this obviously isn’t a courtyard for long evenings of relaxation. However, for a light lunch and serious discussions the design is complimentary and appropriate.

Courtyard Design

courtyard design

A fancy cat litter tray may not be in everybody’s taste but it works well here. 

Flower Courtyard

Flower Courtyard

The messiness of this living space is evident but somehow it’s offset with the range of plants and abundant and vibrant growth.

Modern Courtyard

modern grass courtyard
Heaps of internal light brought in centrally fulfil that ambition of creating a light filled space.
Narrow and long townhouses benefit most from this type of design and the use of large sliding doors provide a seamless passage between the indoor and outdoor space.

Aluminium Gate Driveway

courtyard white

In warmer climates where there are endless days of sunshine – white walls provide the perfect backdrop.

Waterworn pebbles combined with rough slate create enormous visual interest here. The smoothed polished look guides you to the carefully maintained espalier – the ancient agricultral practice of controlling woody plant growth for the production of fruit, by pruning and tying branches to a frame.


Courtyard Garden design

There are restrictions with small spaces but there’s also lots to add. Whether that’s cactuses, a bench, coloured plant pots and the essential bamboo.

Modern Courtyard with Pond

Modern Courtyard with Pond

Is it the creeping fig that catches your eye or the Weaver’s slender bamboo?

This is a an outdoor courtyard space for night time entertaining and relaxation. Imaging the glowing flames and lighting as the party comes alive.

Fern Courtyard

Fern Courtyard
If you have a thing for ferns (from enormous to small and delicate) then creating a fern inspired small courtyard could be for you.

Courtyard Decking

Courtyard Design Ideas

A simple set up and bloody awful.

Courtyard Vertical Garden

Courtyard ideas vertical garden
The clean, contemporary aesthetic of this English white-painted wall give a sense of space and airiness. 

A Sun come Shade Courtyard

Courtyard Design

Calm colour coordination and a great choice of brickwork (both walls and floor) make this space especially inviting. Using the vertical hanging planters uses little space and adds that dash of ‘panache’.

Classic Courtyard Garden

Classic Courtyard Garden

The choice of planting is essential in courtyard gardens.

By using plants that don’t overcrowd spaces it’s possible to achieve great success.

It important to ensure you are not always looking at fencing or boundary walls so selecting the right kind of climbers is crucial.

Green Courtyard

Green Courtyard

Are you looking for relaxation and calmness?

By creating an easily accessible courtyard that feels both comfortable and generous in proportions such tranquility is achievable.

The perfect antidote after a busy working week.

When planning for smaller or enclosed spaces such as courtyard gardens it’s important to draw the eye through simple, enticing design.

In some areas it may be best to create warmth under foot by using outdoor occasional rugs. You can also introduce punctuations of color and variations of texture in throws and cushions.

The choices are endless.

How do I make my courtyard garden kid friendly?

Pick child friendly plants (no thorns) and if there’s room build a Tipee den or add a climbing frame.

How can I make my small courtyard look amazing?

Having a central bold feature is often a better idea than attempting many smaller ones. It’s also a good idea to use containers (keeping in mind access) as well as ensuring all space is usable.

How do I make a Meditaranean courtyard?

A sure way to create a Meditaranean feel is to use Terracotta pottery (plant pots and containers). Lush established Meditaranean plants will thrive in such surroundings – especially in sunnier spots. For extra impact using tiles or gravel goes a long way.



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