23+ Best DIY Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas and Projects (2024)

25 DIY Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Are you tired of looking at that old, rusted swing set or the unsightly utility box that sticks out like a sore thumb in your backyard? You’re not alone.

Many homeowners face the challenge of dealing with outdoor eyesores that can detract from the beauty and enjoyment of their outdoor spaces.

The good news is that with the right Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas, you can turn those unattractive spots into artful features that enhance your landscape.

By cleverly hiding these areas, you not only improve the look of your property but also boost its overall appeal and value. Let’s dive into simple yet effective ways to mask those blemishes in your outdoor oasis.

best outdoor eyesore hiding ideas 3

In this article

Natural Solutions for Eyesore Concealment

A. Planting Shrubs and Bushes

1. Choosing the right plants for your climate and soil

Selecting plants that thrive in your specific environment is crucial. You must consider the climate and the type of soil in your garden. Some shrubs may love the sun, while others prefer shade. It’s important to know what works best where you live.

For instance, if you’re in a place with lots of rain, you’ll want plants that can handle lots of water. On the other hand, dry areas need drought-tolerant plants. Your local garden center can help you find the perfect fit for your space.

Climate TypeSoil PreferencePlant Suggestions
Hot and DryWell-drainingCactus, Sagebrush
Cool and WetMoist, RichFerns, Hydrangeas
TemperateVarious TypesBoxwood, Azaleas

2. Tips on placement and maintenance

The key to using shrubs and bushes effectively is all about where you put them and how you take care of them. Placement is about hiding the eyesore while not causing new problems. Think about how big the plant will get and make sure it won’t block anything important. You also want to make sure you can still reach the area for maintenance.

When it comes to maintenance, it’s about keeping the plants healthy so they can keep doing their job. This means regular watering, trimming, and feeding. Each type of plant will have its own needs, so it’s best to check the care instructions or ask someone who knows about plants. Remember, the goal is to make the eyesore go away, not create more work for yourself.

Placement TipMaintenance TaskFrequency
Away from pipesWateringAs needed
Not too close to buildingsTrimmingSeasonally
Accessible for careFertilizingAnnually

By focusing on these aspects, you can effectively use nature to hide outdoor eyesores, making your space more pleasant and inviting.

B. Incorporating Trees

1. Selecting trees for size and growth rate

When it comes to choosing trees for your outdoor space, size and growth rate are essential factors. It’s important to pick a tree that matches the scale of your space and won’t grow too quickly or slowly.

Fast-growing trees might provide quick coverage but can also become unmanageable or cause damage if not properly maintained.

Slow growers, on the other hand, will take time to reach a size where they can effectively conceal eyesores. Consider the full-grown size of the tree to ensure it fits well in your garden without overwhelming it.

Tree SizeGrowth RateConsiderations
SmallSlowSpace-saving, less maintenance
MediumModerateBalance between growth and control
LargeFastQuick coverage, potential for more upkeep

2. Benefits for privacy and shade

Trees are not just for hiding unsightly elements; they also offer the added advantage of providing privacy and shade. A well-placed tree can shield your yard from prying eyes and create a secluded atmosphere.

The canopy of leaves can also protect you from the harsh sun, making your outdoor area cooler and more comfortable. These natural benefits enhance the usability of your space, allowing you to enjoy your outdoor time without the discomfort of excessive exposure to the elements.

Privacy is particularly important in urban areas where houses are close together. A tree with dense foliage can create a natural barrier that feels both cozy and secure.

As for shade, it can significantly lower the temperature in your seating areas and protect your skin from the sun’s rays. This makes trees a dual-purpose solution: they beautify your space while also improving its functionality.

BenefitType of TreeDescription
PrivacyEvergreenYear-round coverage
ShadeDeciduousSeasonal canopy for sun protection

Incorporating trees into your landscape design requires thoughtful selection and consideration of long-term benefits. By choosing the right trees, you not only camouflage the less attractive aspects of your yard but also gain valuable natural perks that enhance your outdoor living experience.

C. Vertical Gardens and Climbing Plants

1. Utilizing fences and walls

Fences and walls provide the perfect canvas for vertical gardens and climbing plants, turning a bland or unsightly structure into a lush, living wall. To effectively use these surfaces, start by ensuring they are strong enough to support the weight of plants.

Installing trellises or wire frames can help guide and support climbing plants as they grow. This approach not only conceals eyesores but also maximizes the use of vertical space in smaller gardens, adding depth and interest to your outdoor area.

Surface TypeSupport StructureNotes
Wooden FenceTrellisIdeal for lightweight climbers
Brick WallWire FrameSupports heavier plant growth
Metal FenceMesh GridDurable and provides ample support

2. Suitable plant species for vertical growth

Choosing the right species is crucial for a successful vertical garden. You’ll want plants that naturally climb or can be trained to grow upwards. Some plants will need a lot of sun, while others might prefer shade.

It’s important to pick species that match your garden’s conditions. Fast-growing vines can provide quick coverage, but be mindful of invasive species that can take over your garden if left unchecked.

Here are some suitable plant species for vertical growth, categorized by their light preferences:

Light RequirementClimbing PlantGrowth Habit
Full SunClematisRapid climber with vibrant flowers
Partial ShadeIvyHardy and evergreen, good for full coverage
ShadeHydrangea VineTolerates low light, offers large, attractive blooms

Climbing plants not only hide unsightly areas but also bring a dynamic element to your garden as they change with the seasons. They can create a lush backdrop, soften hard lines, and even provide a habitat for wildlife.

When chosen wisely and maintained properly, vertical gardens and climbing plants can be both a practical and beautiful addition to your outdoor space.

Structural Additions and Modifications

A. Fences and Privacy Screens

1. Material options (wood, vinyl, metal, etc.)

When considering building fences or privacy screens, the choice of material is critical for both aesthetics and durability. Wood offers a natural look and can be painted or stained to match your home’s exterior.

Vinyl is a low-maintenance option available in various colors and styles, resistant to weather and pests.

Metal fences, such as wrought iron or aluminum, provide strength and a more open feel while still delineating boundaries. Each material has its benefits and considerations, so it’s important to weigh these against your needs and preferences.

WoodCustomizable, naturalRequires maintenance
VinylLow maintenance, durableMay have limited styles
MetalStrong, open designsCan be more expensive

2. Design ideas to complement your home’s style

The design of your fence or privacy screen should harmonize with the architectural style of your home. For a traditional look, consider lattice work or picket fences that evoke a classic charm.

Modern homes may benefit from clean lines and minimalist designs, such as horizontal slats or metal panels with geometric patterns.

If your home has a rustic vibe, a split-rail or a reclaimed wood fence can add to the countryside feel. The right design not only hides eyesores but also serves as an extension of your home’s character.

Considerations for design include the height of the structure, which should be appropriate for the level of privacy you desire, and the color, which can either blend with your home’s palette or provide a striking contrast.

Decorative elements like post caps or unique hardware can add a personal touch to your fence or screen.

Home StyleFence DesignFeatures
TraditionalPicket FenceClassic detailing, white paint
ModernHorizontal SlatsSleek lines, neutral colors
RusticSplit-rail or Reclaimed WoodNatural textures, earthy tones

Incorporating structural additions like fences and privacy screens not only serves the practical purpose of concealing outdoor eyesores but also contributes to the cohesive look and feel of your property.

With careful selection of materials and designs, these structures can enhance both the privacy and the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor space.

B. Storage Sheds and Garden Closets

1. Concealing garbage cans, garden tools, and more

Storage sheds and garden closets are practical solutions for hiding items like garbage cans, garden tools, and other outdoor necessities that can be an eyesore.

They not only tidy up your space but also protect your items from the elements and potential theft. A well-designed shed or closet can be both functional and aesthetically pleasing, blending seamlessly into your garden’s landscape.

Item to ConcealStorage SolutionBenefit
Garbage CansStorage ShedKeeps pests away, reduces odor
Garden ToolsGarden ClosetOrganizes equipment, saves space
Seasonal ItemsShed with ShelvesProtects from weather, declutters yard

2. Considerations for size and placement

The size of your storage shed or garden closet should be proportional to the items you need to store and the available space in your yard. It’s important not to let the structure dominate your outdoor area or interfere with its functionality.

Placement is also key; the shed or closet should be easily accessible but not the focal point of your garden. Consider tucking it away in a less visible corner or using landscaping to integrate it subtly into your yard.

SizeProportional to needs and spaceAvoids overwhelming the garden
PlacementAccessible but discreetMaintains aesthetic, functionality

C. Decorative Panels and Artwork

1. Using art to distract from eyesores

Artistic elements like decorative panels and artwork can cleverly draw attention away from less appealing parts of your garden.

By introducing visual interest and focal points, these decorative features can redirect the eye and enhance the overall beauty of your outdoor space.

Whether it’s a vibrant mural, a sculptural piece, or an intricately designed panel, art can transform an eyesore into a backdrop for creativity.

Art TypePlacementEffect
MuralOn a wallAdds color, tells a story
SculptureIn a garden bedCreates a point of interest
Decorative PanelIn front of an eyesoreMasks with patterns, textures

2. DIY options for personalized touch

For a more personal touch, consider DIY art projects that reflect your individual style and creativity. This can be as simple as painting a fence panel or as elaborate as creating a mosaic from broken tiles.

DIY projects not only provide a unique solution to hiding eyesores but also offer a sense of accomplishment and personal expression.

DIY ProjectMaterialsPersonal Touch
Painted PanelOutdoor paint, stencilsCustom colors and designs
Tile MosaicBroken tiles, groutUnique patterns, handcrafted feel

Incorporating storage solutions and decorative art into your outdoor space allows for a practical and visually appealing way to deal with common eyesores.

With thoughtful planning and a touch of creativity, these elements can significantly enhance the functionality and appearance of your garden.

Creative Cover-ups and Camouflage

A. Rock Gardens and Dry River Beds

1. Blending utility boxes or pipes into the landscape

Rock gardens and dry river beds are clever ways to integrate necessary but unsightly elements like utility boxes or exposed pipes into your garden. These features use natural materials like stones, pebbles, and sometimes plants to create a scene that draws the eye away from the eyesore and toward a deliberately designed landscape feature.

EyesoreCover-up SolutionEffect
Utility BoxRock GardenDistracts with varied textures and colors
Exposed PipesDry River BedMimics a natural water feature, guiding the eye along a path

2. Step-by-step guide to creating a natural-looking feature

Creating a natural-looking rock garden or dry river bed involves several steps:

  1. Plan the layout around the eyesore, ensuring it will be well-concealed.
  2. Lay down a base of sand or landscape fabric to prevent weeds.
  3. Arrange larger rocks or boulders as anchors in the design.
  4. Fill in with smaller stones, pebbles, and gravel to create texture.
  5. Add plants or grasses that complement the rocky terrain for a more authentic look.

B. Water Features

1. Using ponds or fountains to mask noise and visuals

Water features such as ponds and fountains not only conceal unsightly areas but also create a soothing ambiance with their gentle sounds, which can mask noise from the street or neighbors. The movement and reflection of water add a dynamic and refreshing element to any garden.

Water FeatureConcealment StrategyAdded Benefit
PondCovers large ground areasSupports aquatic plants and wildlife
FountainVertical element distracts from eyesoresSound masks ambient noise

2. Precautions and maintenance advice

When installing water features, it’s important to consider safety and maintenance. Ensure the feature is safely constructed, particularly if children or pets are present. Regular cleaning and water treatment will keep the feature healthy and attractive, preventing issues like algae growth or unpleasant odors.

PrecautionMaintenance TaskFrequency
Safety LiningCheck for leaksSeasonally
Water QualityTreat with appropriate chemicalsAs needed
CleanlinessRemove debrisRegularly

C. Outdoor Furniture and Accessories

1. Strategic placement of benches, pots, and sculptures

Strategically placed outdoor furniture and accessories can serve as both functional items and camouflage for eyesores. A bench can provide seating while hiding a low-lying utility element, and large pots or sculptures can block the view of various unwanted items.

Furniture/AccessoryPlacement StrategyDual Function
BenchIn front of a low wallSeating and concealment
PotsAround a base of a polePlant display and visual block
SculptureCentral feature in a sightlineArtistic focus and distraction

2. Balancing functionality with aesthetics

When selecting furniture and accessories for camouflage, consider how they will be used and how they will look in the space. The goal is to maintain functionality without sacrificing the visual harmony of your garden. Choose items that complement the existing décor and serve the intended purpose effectively.

FunctionalityComfortable seatingPractical use
AestheticsStyle matching garden themeVisual appeal

Creative cover-ups and camouflage techniques allow you to turn potential eyesores into attractive features or at least make them less noticeable. By using natural elements, water features, and thoughtfully chosen furniture, you can enhance the beauty of your outdoor space while maintaining its utility.

Innovative Use of Hardscaping

A. Pathways and Paving

1. Directing attention away from eyesores

Pathways and paving can be strategically designed to guide the eye and foot traffic away from less desirable areas of your garden.

By creating an appealing path that leads towards a focal point, you can effectively redirect attention from any outdoor eyesores.

The path itself becomes a feature, encouraging visitors to follow it and admire the intentional aspects of your landscape.

Hardscaping ElementFunctionDistraction Technique
Curved PathwayGuides movementDraws the eye along a natural, meandering route
Patterned PavingEngages the eyeCaptivates with intricate designs or bold layouts

2. Materials and design tips for cohesive landscaping

The materials used for pathways and paving should complement the existing structures and elements in your garden. Natural stone gives a timeless and organic feel, while concrete pavers offer a more modern and uniform look.

Consider the colors and textures that will match your home’s exterior and existing garden features. For a cohesive landscape, repeat materials and colors found elsewhere in your yard.

MaterialDesign TipCohesion Example
Natural StoneMatch with garden rocksCreates a unified natural theme
Concrete PaversEcho the color of your home’s trimTies the path to the house

B. Retaining Walls and Raised Beds

1. Integrating unsightly slopes or erosion-prone areas

Retaining walls and raised beds can transform problematic areas of your garden, such as unsightly slopes or erosion-prone spots, into attractive and functional spaces.

These structures provide a way to create level planting areas, making maintenance easier and enhancing the visual appeal of the landscape.

Problem AreaHardscaping SolutionBenefit
SlopeRetaining WallPrevents soil erosion, adds usable space
Erosion-prone areaRaised BedContains soil and plants, reduces runoff

2. Construction and planting suggestions

When constructing retaining walls or raised beds, it’s important to ensure proper drainage to avoid water build-up that can damage the structure.

Use materials like stones, bricks, or specially designed blocks that fit together securely. For planting, choose species that will thrive in the conditions provided by the raised area—consider sun exposure, soil type, and water requirements.

Construction TipPlanting SuggestionConsideration
Ensure drainageSelect appropriate plantsMatch plants to sun and soil conditions
Use sturdy materialsAdd mulch for moisture retentionHelps maintain soil health

Innovative hardscaping techniques like thoughtfully designed pathways and the construction of retaining walls or raised beds not only solve practical problems in the landscape but also add aesthetic value.

With careful planning and selection of materials, these elements can create a harmonious and inviting outdoor space, diverting attention from any eyesores and enhancing the overall look of your property.

Lighting and Illusion Techniques

A. Landscape Lighting

1. Highlighting features and shadowing eyesores

Strategic use of landscape lighting can accentuate the best features of your garden while casting shadows to conceal less attractive areas.

By illuminating trees, sculptures, or architectural elements, you draw attention to these points of interest.

Conversely, by keeping areas with eyesores in relative darkness or using directional lighting to cast shadows, you can effectively make these spots less noticeable.

Lighting TechniquePurposeOutcome
UplightingEmphasizes a tree or structureCreates a focal point
Directional LightingCasts shadows over eyesoresReduces visual impact

2. Energy-efficient options and installation tips

Energy-efficient lighting options, such as LED lights, are not only better for the environment but also cost-effective in the long run due to their low power consumption and long lifespan.

When installing landscape lighting, consider solar-powered options to eliminate the need for electrical wiring. Ensure all fixtures are correctly sealed and rated for outdoor use to prevent moisture damage.

Energy-Efficient OptionInstallation TipAdvantage
LED LightsUse a timer to conserve energyLong-lasting, low energy use
Solar-Powered LightsPlace in a sunny areaNo wiring needed, renewable energy

B. Mirrors and Reflective Surfaces

1. Creating the illusion of space and hiding flaws

Mirrors and other reflective surfaces can be used cleverly in the garden to create illusions of space and to hide imperfections.

A well-placed mirror can reflect a beautiful part of the garden, effectively doubling the visual appeal of that area, while also drawing the eye away from less desirable spots.

Reflective SurfaceIllusion CreatedVisual Effect
MirrorExpands spaceMakes small gardens appear larger
Polished MetalReflects light and sceneryAdds brightness and interest

2. Safety considerations and placement strategies

When incorporating mirrors or reflective materials, safety is a primary concern. Ensure that any mirrors are securely mounted and that their placement does not pose a hazard to people moving through the garden.

Consider the angle of reflection to avoid blinding glare and to maximize the desired visual effect.

Safety ConsiderationPlacement StrategyDesired Effect
Secure MountingAttach firmly to a wall or fencePrevents accidents
Glare ManagementAngle away from direct sunlightAvoids discomfort, enhances view

Using lighting and reflective techniques not only adds beauty to your garden at night but also manipulates perception during the day.

These methods allow you to showcase the highlights of your outdoor space while subtly downplaying its flaws, creating a more enchanting and inviting atmosphere.

25 DIY Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Wooden Privacy Screens Free Plans

Wooden Privacy Screens Come In All Sizes | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas
Faux Rocks Cover Unsightly PVC Pipes | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: thesawdustmaker.com

Source: plowhearth.com

DIY Hose Outdoor Planter

Pretty Planter Hides Garden Hoses | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: thatsmyletter.blogspot.com

Lovely Cabinet Hides Utility Box and Garden Tools | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: shabbyglam.blogspot.com

Basic Cedar Screen For Hiding Bins | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: ihome108.com

Hanging Wooden Screens For Back Patio Privacy | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: hgtv.com

Pretty Picket Fence Screens Unsightly AC Unit | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: pixstats.net

Camouflage Your Air Conditioner

Plants or Trellis for Hiding Air Conditioning Units | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: spiralsandspatulas.com

Lovely Raised Planters Hide Unsightly Bins | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: life.idntimes.com

Wood Screen

Cedar Screen Hides Utility Box | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: remodelaholic.com

DIY Air Conditioner Screen

Wooden AC Screens are Easy DIY Projects | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: uglyducklinghouse.com

Garden Sheds Can Be Things of Backyard Beauty | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: thecavenderdiary.com

The Simplest Screens Can Be Effective | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: providenthomedesign.com

Hide that Ugly AC Unit

slat ac after 1
Consider a Wooden Wall Instead of a Shed | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas
Cool Chevron Pattern for a Deck Privacy Screen | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: house-pet.blogspot.com

Source: 1001pallets.com

Source: diypassion.com

Air Conditioning Unit Cover

Simple Wooden Fence for AC Camouflage | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: hometalk.com

Hideous AC Units

Clean Cedar Lines Hide Your AC | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: mamaeatsclean.com

A Trellis Top Adds Further Disguise | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: hu.pinterest.com

This Pretty Cabinet Hides Utility Box and Wires | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: farm3.staticflickr.com

Lattice Disguises AC, Why Not Plant a Pretty Clematis Here | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: davidandcarolineparker.blogspot.com

Garbage Can storage Area

Hide Your Bin Behind a Lovely Lattice Fence | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: ishouldbemoppingthefloor.com

AC Unit Disappears Behind the Right Paint Color and Plants | Outdoor Eyesore Hiding Ideas

Source: houseandhome.com

Maintenance and Long-Term Considerations

A. Seasonal Adjustments and Upkeep

1. Preparing for changes in plant growth and weather

Seasonal changes can have a significant impact on your garden’s appearance and the effectiveness of your concealment strategies. As plants grow or enter dormancy, and as weather conditions fluctuate, it’s important to adapt your maintenance routine. This may involve pruning in the spring or fall, protecting plants from frost, or adjusting irrigation systems to accommodate for rainfall or drought.

SpringPruningStimulates growth, maintains shape
SummerMulchingRetains moisture, controls temperature
FallPlantingPrepares for spring bloom
WinterProtectionGuards against cold damage

2. Routine care to ensure lasting concealment

To ensure that your concealment efforts remain effective year-round, establish a routine care schedule. This includes regular weeding, cleaning hardscaped areas, and repairing any damage to structures or features. Consistent upkeep not only preserves the function of these elements but also their appearance, ensuring that eyesores remain out of sight.

Care TaskFrequencyBenefit
WeedingAs neededPrevents overgrowth, maintains neatness
CleaningSeasonallyKeeps features looking new
RepairPromptly when neededPrevents further damage, maintains safety

B. Balancing Aesthetics and Accessibility

1. Ensuring hidden areas remain functional

While the primary goal is to hide eyesores, it’s crucial to maintain the functionality of these areas. For instance, utility boxes or bins should still be accessible for use or service. Plan your concealment methods with access in mind, using removable panels or gates where necessary, to combine practicality with aesthetics.

Concealment MethodAccessibility FeatureFunction
PlantingPathway to hidden areaPermits maintenance access
Decorative PanelHinged or removableAllows for utility servicing

2. Planning for future changes or removal

Consider the possibility of future changes to your property, such as renovations or landscaping updates. Design your concealment solutions to be adaptable or removable to accommodate these changes. This foresight will save time and effort in the long run and allow for flexibility in your garden’s design.

Future ChangeAdaptation StrategyAdvantage
RenovationModular designEasy to modify or expand
Landscaping UpdateNon-permanent fixturesSimplifies redesign process

Maintaining your outdoor space is an ongoing process that requires attention to detail and planning for the future. By considering seasonal needs, routine care, and the balance between aesthetics and accessibility, you can ensure that your garden remains both beautiful and functional for years to come.


In conclusion, effectively concealing outdoor eyesores is an achievable goal with a blend of creativity, strategic planning, and regular maintenance.

Whether you’re integrating natural elements like rock gardens, investing in structural solutions such as storage sheds, or employing lighting and illusion techniques, the key is to enhance the beauty of your outdoor space while maintaining its functionality.

Remember to consider the long-term implications of your choices, ensuring that whatever methods you employ are not only effective in the short term but also sustainable and adaptable for the future.

With the right approach, your garden can be transformed into a seamless extension of your home, where eyesores become an afterthought, and the harmony of your outdoor sanctuary takes center stage.

best outdoor eyesore hiding ideas 4