8 Common Types of Backyard Structures

June 3, 2021

Designing and building a custom home includes the interior and exterior of the home as well as the landscaping. When it comes to your backyard, there are a lot of things you can do and structures you can add to create the atmosphere you want. Here are a few common types of backyard structures to consider as you think about your backyard:

1. Arbor

An arbor is one of the common types of backyard structures; it is also a simple way to add something structural to your backyard. Arbors are generally arched frames or can be square-cornered.

They are often used to help create define an entry/exit point as you define pathways in your backyard. You can choose a stylistic arbor and let the structure add an aesthetic element to your backyard. Another option is to cover it with trailing plants or climbing plants for a different look.

Whether built that way or covered in plants, an arbor often has a handcrafted look and style. Handcrafted elements are one of the popular trends in luxury residential gardens, which can make an arbor a great addition to your backyard.

2. Gazebo

As a freestanding unit and a more defined garden building, a gazebo is one of the larger and more permanent backyard structures. They are versatile in that there are a ton of gazebo ideas and they can be built in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and designs.

Gazebos are supported by columns, have a solid roof that offers protection from sun and weather, and can be built with other design elements. Some gazebos have a cupola as an added architectural feature, some have built-in benches or a porch swing, and more.

If a gazebo helps create the look and atmosphere in your backyard that you want, you can use it for a variety of things. Plus, you can get creative with what you include and create incredible outdoor living spaces in it or around it.

3. Greenhouse

For serious gardeners, a greenhouse is the perfect backyard structure. These are freestanding structures with an enclosed roof and plenty of windows.

They are built to create their own microclimate inside to allow for growing flowers, vegetables, and other plants regardless of the weather outside. This allows for a thriving garden or dependable produce year-round.

4. Patio Cover

A patio cover is one of the most common types of backyard structures. They are attached to the home and can come in a lot of different forms. They can have a simple, solid roof or can be built to provide partial coverage. Putting a roof or cover over a patio is one of the classic patio ideas for ranch-style homes and is a style that works well for other homes too.

A pergola could be considered a type of patio cover. Patio covers can also be built with a lattice to create a trellis that covers the patio area. They are highly customizable structures that can be built to match your needs and style and are one of the outdoor patio design ideas to consider.

5. Pergola

Although arbors and pergolas are sometimes confused with each other, they are different structures. A Pergola tends to be a larger unit that can be freestanding and supported by four posts, usually columns or pillars.

It can also be connected to another structure on one side, which is often the case when they extend over patios. Because they are larger, Pergolas tend to offer more shade and more privacy than arbors. This makes them a popular and versatile backyard structure and a popular idea for outdoor living spaces.

6. Pool House

A pool house is one of the pool landscaping ideas and can be as simple as a shed for storing supplies to actual living quarters. It is generally considered a freestanding structure located next to or near a pool and can sometimes be considered a cabana. Simple, small pool houses are often used for storing equipment, pool supplies, and other pool-related items.

Larger, more complex pool houses include kitchens, bedrooms, bathrooms, living areas, game rooms, etc. Depending on how much you put into your pool house and how it’s built, it could be considered separate living quarters on your property and could be used as a guest house or even a rental property.

7. Ramada

A Ramada, also sometimes called a pavilion, is similar to a pergola in the sense that it can be freestanding and supported by four columns or attached on one side to another structure. Unlike a pergola, a ramada has a closed roof.

This provides complete shade and some protection from the weather. Because of this, it is a popular option for full coverage on patios and other outdoor living spaces. They are often built to provide protection near an outdoor fireplace or to provide coverage over an outdoor kitchen.

8. Trellis

A trellis is a simple backyard structure that is also versatile. It is usually a geometrically-shaped structure that is meant specifically to provide a surface and guide for climbing plants. A trellis is also sometimes used to provide support to fruit-bearing trees.

Trellises can be used as a standalone structure as part of a garden. This can help create and maintain boundaries for plants and can help you keep your garden organized. A trellis can be used in conjunction with other backyard structures.

They can commonly be found installed on fencing, on an arbor, and even on a pergola. You could even include a trellis on part of your gazebo to add some shade, beauty, and privacy.

Adding some useful structures to your backyard is one of the popular home design trends. These are just a few of the common types of backyard structures. There are many options for things to build in your backyard. Between that and custom craftsmanship, the options are endless.

If you’re ready to get started on your own custom home, contact Custom Home Group at 717-284-4090. We can help make your dream home a reality!