Asian-themed backyards are typically associated with tranquility and relaxation. These are yards where you can escape the chaos of the world and connect with nature. Although beautiful when done properly, this can be a tricky theme to pull off. You don’t have to incorporate everything on this list into your outdoor living space, but these ideas will help guide you.

  • Asian Outdoor Water Fountain – This should be one of the first elements you add to the landscaping. Asian outdoor water fountains naturally become the center of attention. You can have more than one! Allow them to set the tone for the rest of the space.
  • Asian-Style Gate – A stone pathway meandering to an Asian-style gate will look like it leads to a mysterious place. It draws the eye through the yard to the gate. You can create a meditation space beyond the gate, or simply use it for show. Plant lots of leafy plants around it.
  • Sunken Dining area – If you are having a deck built anyway, have a sunken table installed. You sit on cushions at deck level, but the sunken table has an opening around the perimeter, so you sit on the edge of the ledge like a chair. Alternately, you can just put cushions on the ground with a low table or bench.
  • Paper Lanterns – These are an absolutely must in any Asian-themed yard. Hang them from tree branches, Shepherd’s hooks, or overhead rafters.
  • Reflection Pond – Koi fish probably come to mind, when you picture an Asian garden, right? Well, Koi ponds are nice, but can be a lot of work to maintain to keep the fish healthy. A reflection pond with lotus and lilies floating is easier to take care of than a koi pond, and just as nice to look at.
  • Asian Plants – All of your plants don’t have to be Asian. It is nice to incorporate in some native species, as well, for the birds and other animals that feed on the bugs attracted to native plants. However, there should definitely be some that distinctly scream “Asian,” such as bonsai, bamboo, gingko, Mugo pine, Japanese maple, and flowering cherry trees.
  • Avoid White Flowers – They are viewed as funeral flowers in Asian culture.
  • Sculptures – Add some sculptures, but don’t overdo it. Remember, you will have Asian outdoor water fountains, so you won’t need a lot of unnecessary art creating clutter, but a few pieces are nice to have.
  • Daybed – Ideally, a large suspended daybed overlooking the reflection pond will become your favorite place to relax. You can get the same affect in a fraction of the price with an oversized hammock and stand.