Design Tips for a Stunning Backyard Waterscape

If you’ve ever flipped through an architecture or outdoor living magazine, then you’ve seen the photos.  Stunning backyard waterscapes with lush greenery, pops of colorful flowers, sparkling blue water and plenty of space for lounging or entertaining. If you’re tired of envying these backyards, it might be time to create your own outdoor oasis.

The Difference Between a Pool and a Waterscape

The terms waterscape is thrown around quite a bit when describing a backyard. But what exactly is a waterscape? Generally speaking, it’s a landscape in which a body of water is the prominent feature.  A pool sitting in the middle of your backyard surrounded by nothing but grass isn’t a very impressive waterscape. A waterscape that uses hardscape and landscape elements to create a cohesive design can be breathtaking. Click To Tweet

A Sparkling Pool

The pool is obviously the foundation of your waterscape. Choosing a pool design will dictate what surrounding features you’ll incorporate. For example, a freeform pool will often put an emphasis on natural materials and lush landscape. This makes the pool look like part of the nature surrounding it. A rectangular pool may incorporate modern hardscape elements, meant to make a statement rather than blend in.

Custom Water Feature

Custom fountains are a great way to personalize and transform your outdoor space. Water features can be in the form of wall fountains,free-standing fountains and natural-style waterfalls. There are a variety of materials you can use, ranging from glass, slate, metal, marble, stone, etc. Your fountain will be something that you and your guests enjoy for years to come. It will provide an attractive, soothing ambiance that can really amplify your waterscape design.


Hardscaping consists of the inanimate elements of landscaping, particularly stone or wood. The rock paths you have weaving around your garden, or the stone steps leading up to your hot tub are both examples of hardscaping. Probably the largest hardscape elements in your waterscape are your pool surround and water feature. Many people who opt for freeform pools will create a fountain using large river rocks stacked atop each other. These same kinds of stone can also be incorporated to the construction of a hot tub, usually built into the curve of a freeform pool. Alternately, a modern pool design might want sleek tile or glass to make the pool appear almost edgeless.

Incorporate Nature

Incorporating nature into your waterscape not only creates a lush, tropical appearance, but provides a buffer from unwanted noises, and a privacy barrier from the prying eyes of neighbors. There’s nothing worse than sitting in your hot tub trying to relax while neighborhood children play loudly next door.  Planting the right trees and shrubbery not only add privacy but provide a lush backdrop for your waterscape. The visual interest from various colors and textures immediately draws the eye.


Your waterscape provides a stunning sight on summer days, but what happens after dark?  Without the right outdoor lighting, your waterscape can be washed out in bright overhead lights or barely visible in spotty pool lights. Proper lighting will make your outdoor space safer for guests and will provide ambiance to your waterscape. Imagine the light reflecting off the water, the sounds of falling water drowning out any neighborhood sounds as you unwind after a long day. Taking a little extra care in the details of your waterscape can go a long way in creating your own backyard oasis.

An Outdoor Experience

Not everyone can live on waterfront property, but that shouldn’t restrict you from having a beautiful waterscape view. With seating, shade and thoughtful design, your backyard can provide an outdoor living experience. By weaving together hardscape, waterscape, and landscape design, you can enhance your backyard and increase your home’s value.

A Backyard to Be Proud Of

Even in the suburbs, your backyard doesn’t have to be cookie cutter. Make an impression and set your home apart from the rest of your block by boosting your outdoor creativity.  Injecting your personality into the design and incorporating elements from your home will create a cohesive outdoor space guaranteed to impress. Not sure you can pull it off? Talk to an outdoor professional for peace of mind and the expertise you need to create a stunning scene.

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