Side yards can turn into dumping grounds in a flash if you don’t take the time to organize the space. Recently I have been working on a backyard space that had a neglected side yard.
Originally the side yard was used simply for garbage bin storage. This is a great place to keep your garbage bins since it is accessible yet not super visible. However, in order to make space for a much needed potting shed we were forced to reconfigure the space. We thought it would be best to move the garbage bins to the front of the property. Not only does it make it easier to take the garbage out, but it gave us the space to make a potting shed.
We reused much of the lumber that made up the previous garbage storage to rebuild a new garbage area in the front of the property. We eliminated the swing gate completely and opted to have an open entrance. This made bringing the garbage in and out a much easier task. The opening is still discrete enough to keep the garbage out of sight. Reusing the lumbar also helped make the new structure look like it had been there forever.
At first we looked into simple prefab storage sheds. There are some great ones out there, unfortunately we could not find one that was the right size for the space we had to work with. After looking into what our options were, we found that having my carpenter build one wasn’t going to cost much more and would have the added benefit of fully maximizing the space allotted as opposed to using the standard sizes that prefab sheds come in.
Again, we really wanted the shed to blend into the landscape and feel as though it had always been there so we reused as much lumbar as possible. We also went with a copper roof to match the roofing on the main home.
Inside I wanted to give the homeowners as much storage as possible. The way I mapped out how best to use the space was by first bringing in all the bulky items and hanging them. I started with the wheelbarrow. I wanted it to be located such that it was easy to take in and out. Once that was sorted, I arranged all the other garden tools on hangers and hooks all around.
Once all the tools were situated, I realized I had the whole other side left for more storage. The homeowner enjoys gardening, so I thought it would be nice to surprise her with a potting area. Given that it’s a dirt floor, you can’t really make a mess! To achieve this we built a simple redwood counter (using leftover posts as legs to provide additional support). We left the area under the counter empty so that larger/heavier items could be stored here. Above the counter we added redwood shelves and had them wrap around so that we could maximize the space available to us.
I used a mixture of outdoor friendly containers to help keep this storage space tidy and organized. Rubber black bins house dog toys, pool toys, and spa cleaners. Small metal buckets were used for paintbrushes. They fit nicely on the counter. Below we used wire bins for various soils and bulbs. These are wonderful for the space since dirt and granules simply fall out onto the dirt floor.
I hope you all make the most of your outdoor space this summer!