Tiered Garden Ideas to Level Up Your Backyard

Jump to:

For plots with vertical spaces, tiered garden designs are a great way to add intrigue and character to the yard. Tiers are also a must-have for defining zones and elevating your garden.

For one, you can have more space for a patio with furniture, pool, BBQ, or an extended outdoor living space area like sheds.

What’s more, a multi-levelled design outdoor space makes a tremendous impact. And for homes built on hills, a tiered garden will not only make the plot more usable, but it also can increase the value of your property!

So, if you’re on the lookout for amazing tiered garden ideas, we’ve got you covered! Level up your backyard and put your vertical space to good use. Get inspired with these cool design inspirations from the web.

Let’s get started with the list!

banner content

1. Industrial gabion

Rock gabion walls have added a major dose of textural interest to the landscape of this tiered garden. If you have an industrial-themed backyard, this rock really works for spaces with steps.

Industrial gabion retaining walls
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

2. Several tiers on a sloped property

Multiple tiers on a sloped garden can help manage erosion. This also gives you the opportunity to layer different plants and landscaping elements.

Whether you use stone pavers or concrete to form the tiers, they’ll make a dramatic impact.

Tiered-level sloped backyard
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

3. Wood rustic edge

Give multi-levelled beds an organic look, and go for wood to add a rustic charm. Multi-levelled flowerbeds boarded with wooden edges feel laid-back, rustic, and organic.

This is great if you’re after a more natural vibe for your garden.

4. Multi-level space for diversion

A tiered garden concept like this can help you see the potential of unused zones in your backyard. Set up the outdoor dining area on the first level, the pool in the middle, and the sun loungers with a pergola at the top.

5. Uneven sloped backyard

The unevenness of a sloped plot is actually what makes it an asset! Take a look at this garden as an example; the homeowners were able to make the most out of those slopes and hills.

It gives the impression of flow and movement.

Uneven sloped backyard
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

6. Opportunities for growing garden

A simple tiered garden setup like this can offer a lot of opportunities for growing greens. You’re not limited to using the ground to plant your blooms.

Strawberry sloped garden
Image Credit: Geograph UK

7. The contemporary landscape

The grey wooden decking and stairs with LED lighting are the highlight of this modern multi-level outdoor space. Surround the edges with plant materials, such as round bushes, to complete the look.

Contemporary sloped landscape with modern house frontage
Image Credit: Pexels

8. Play with boulder rocks

Boulder rocks complement the natural surroundings, and it works well with casual or country homes. The playful rock concept in this tiered yard can reflect a cleaner and more modern look.

Tip: Design a stairway if your tiers run the full width of your yard.

Sloped garden decorated with boulders and plants
Image Credit: Renee Grayson

9. Go for sleek paving

If you want a contemporary style for your multi-levelled space, this concept might be your best bet! Incorporate your ideal garden paving ideas into your levels and create a cohesive finish to achieve a polished and fuss-free look.

10. Multi-levelled secret garden hideaway

A hidden seating spot adds a sense of discovery to this outdoor space. Thanks to this house’s tiered plot, it created a sense of intrigue in the garden, breaking up the line of sight.

The wide stone steps then reveal a space for a cosy nook.

11. Modern landscaping with planters and grass on different levels

Having planters and grass all on different levels looks amazing. Adding water features and LED lighting would look magnificent – just like in this modern garden landscape.

12. Incorporate a waterfall

There are tons of garden water feature ideas available out there, and this one is one of our favourites! The owners of this tropical yard used the height of their hill to create a sensational waterfall.

This is great if you want to have your own private oasis.

Mini waterfall in a sloped garden
Image Credit: Pxhere

13. Level up your decking

Add multi-functional steps to your deck as part of your tiered garden idea; just take inspiration from this. Decking is often used to raise outdoor furniture off the ground, but this versatile landscaping feature created more tiers than just one.

Check our garden decking ideas for more inspiration!

Decked patio seating area
Image Credit: Pxhere

14. Tiered retaining wall

A retaining wall like this can make a sloping property more functional. It gives the opportunity to create a dedicated planting area behind and along the wall.

Plus, it reclaims a part of the yard for an expanse of grass on level ground.

Tiered blocks retaining wall
Image Credit: Flickr, Redi-Rock International

15. Give your pool its own level

For you to achieve a great outdoor space, just model your space on this garden. A swimming pool incorporated into a tiered garden gives a whole new meaning tof luxe, taking your outdoor entertaining to the next level.

Backyard pool elevated on a sloped garden
Image Credit: Pxhere

16. Front yard hill landscape

Levelling a garden in the front of your house can make a striking first impression. This front yard features modern linear designs, bringing something new not only to the garden but to the overall property.

17. Sink it down

A sunken pool will always be chic, and this luxury villa proves it! A sunken design like this offers a sense of privacy from the house with a luxurious, spa-like vibe.

Surround with pale, rendered walls and add a bench for a contemporary twist.

18. Devise a fire pit destination

No multi-level garden is complete with a fire pit area; it makes the yard even more functional, especially in the colder months. A simple style like this is sure enough to draw guests through your yard and make the most of it into the late evenings!

Decked seating area with mini fire pit
Image Credit: Flickr, Jack Pearce

19. Steps lined with modern planters

Have a look at these steps in tones of grey, contrasting beautifully against bright green ferns and grasses. The clever design features keep the look light and modern.

The white walls help bounce light around the area, making the space feel larger.

20. Disguise a slope with shrubs

If you’re looking for a natural way to hide your plain sloped area, this might be the perfect solution for you! Soften the boundaries with shrubs and other planting material.

Try a few design tricks to keep the look cohesive. Or transform your space into something like this.

Shrubs disguised as slopes
Image Credit: Flickr, F.D. Richards

21. Define it with an arch or entrance

Sculptural elements are perfect for adding a creative touch to any backyard setting. In this photo, the designer of this space used a rusted steel circle instead of a classic trellis to create an entryway to a garden.

Dessert-themed front entrance with drought-tolerant plants and sandstone steps
Image Credit: Flickr, cultivar413

22. Create a focal point

Whether you use your backyard for entertaining, as an outdoor kitchen, or for your gardening, don’t be afraid to go bold. Add something monumental and create a focal point in your yard space.

Take a cue from this monolithic fire pit; it divides the backyard into different sections.

23. Add a source of shade

For you to enjoy your space, especially in the summer, it’s important that your lounging or reading nook area has enough shade. You need to protect yourself against the harsh UV rays; adding a pergola or a gazebo, will do the trick.

If you want something more natural, you can opt for big trees. Read our garden shade ideas next!

Open pergola
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

24. Friendly bamboo plants for privacy

Privacy is a must in rural gardens or places where neighbours and passersby can easily peek through your property. This is particularly essential for tiered gardens.

Privacy solutions come in many forms to suit your needs, but a simple bamboo planting like this works wonders.

Bamboo screening
Image Credit: Flickr, Ivy Dawned

25. Offer a view at all levels

Here, we present to you the real head-turner-tiered garden idea on the Internet! This gorgeous design has to be one of our top favourites.

The dramatic use of levels indeed works in a multitude of ways. We truly love the look! I mean, who wouldn’t?

26. Cover with artificial grass

Artificial grass is a hassle-free way to add lush turf into tiered landscapes. Cover every other level with a faux lawn, preferably on the first and third levels.

Grow actual plants on the second and fourth levels or vice versa. Either way, this arrangement will make your setup more interesting.

Artificial lawn
Image Credit: Tree People

27. Tropical and seaside

Turn your awkward sloped part of your garden for accent succulents and pots. Blur the borders with tropical elements, such as palm trees, for a striking mix of seaside and tropic vibe.

Here’s to a fresher, greener and lusher outdoor space!

Sloped tropical garden forest
Image Credit: Rawpixel

28. Squeeze in a vegetable patch

If you mean to keep a veggie garden on your sloped plot, a tiered design offers convenience. Plant your vegetables across the slope using contour rows, terraces, or raised beds.

Indeed, a natural way to make a feature out of a hillside garden.

Mini vegetable patch
Image Credit: Flickr,

29. Make a terraced garden

A terraced garden can look amazing both when viewed from up and when admired from below. Add a series of retaining walls to divide the space into sections. Each level can also showcase various plants and can be further landscaped in its unique way.

Terraced sloped garden
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

30. Cosy seating areas among the planters

With a steep slope, chances are there’s less space for sitting areas and other features you’d normally have in a flat yard. But you can overcome this challenge with a bit of creativity.

Take a cue from this small hillside backyard. The owner created raised beds that can double as benches (built-in ones).

Seating area among planters on a sloped garden
Image Credit: Geograph UK

31. Trees as focal points

A sloping garden with trees can give off a dreamy look and more of nature. Add a path that twists and turns, following the slope and winding down between the trees. An incredible setting for an organic landscape design.

Sloped garden with trees and boulders
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

32. A mix of steel

If you’re not a big fan of stone or gabion walls, consider using steel in your tiered garden. This is especially ideal if you live in an area with an arid climate and dry landscape.

The weathered finish fits nicely, while giving your sloped plot a modern look.

33. Play with planting height

Take this opportunity to play around with planting height and add an interesting scope to your plot. Use climbing plants and structures in a more dynamic and design-led way.

Sloped garden with a variety of plants
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

34. Opt for low maintenance planting scheme

Maintaining plants on a slope is a difficult task for obvious reasons. So look for plants that suit the soil conditions that don’t need a lot of maintenance. This is also a great way to introduce a minimalist garden approach to your space.

35. Less is more

Speaking of minimalist technique, have a look at this simple landscaping. The design is perfect if you prefer order combined with low maintenance benefits.

The use of space, pristine hardscaping, restrictive planting, and formal water features = perfection! See our minimalist garden ideas for more.

36. Use screening for privacy

Garden screening ideas can offer both privacy and shade in any yard setting. Tiered or sloped gardens are no exceptions.

Use taller trees and shrubs on lower terraces to effectively screen the upper areas. This ensures that the view from the neighbours’ upstairs windows are blocked.

Portable garden screening
Image Credit: Flickr, Gary J. Wood

37. Stonewall for interest

Garden walls, such as stone walls, can add interest and provide a backdrop for the plants. The walls also create small pockets to grow drought-resistant plants, which is a plus for green thumbs.

It’ll also look amazing when paired with other rock garden ideas.

Stonewall retaining wall
Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

38. Plant ornamental grasses

Ornamental grasses are great for slopes. The added angle feature provides a cascade effect when the wind blows them.

If you’re thinking of growing them, most prefer well-drained soils. Native species, in particular, are well adapted to enduring sunny slopes.

Ornamental grass
Image Credit: Flickr, Dinesh Valke

39. Let the grass grow longer

Mowing a lawn on a sloping garden is a challenge, so why not opt for leaving the grass to grow longer? This is brilliant for wildlife.

A wildflower meadow mix into bare soil also makes a great alternative. In no time, the flowers will be up, and the slope will look naturally astounding.

40. Separate the borders with a staircase

Dividing a long, sloping plot is important to avoid the uninviting ‘corridor’ effect. Breaking it up with horizontal lines like a staircase is a great idea. Garden stairs can be both functional and decorative landscape features.

41. Create a defined route

Position steps at alternate ends of each terrace to create a defined route through the yard. Choose a pathway design that suits your plot condition to add interest and drama.

Garden route
Image Credit: Geograph UK

42. DIY sloped water feature

Take a look at this genius upcycled water feature made from watering cans! Water runs downhill, and this innovative DIY makes a great addition to the sloping plot. A great and creative way to make use of the old cans and put them on display.

43. Introduce a play area

Imagine how much fun the kids will have in this sloped playground haven! If the space allows, leave some space to install a slide and a mini white sandbox. This contemporary design is our favourite and ideal for a natural slope backyard.

Giant slide on a sloped garden
Image Credit: Geograph UK

44. With cascading waterfall

Having a sloped yard gives you endless opportunities for creating waterfalls. Take this cascading waterfall design, for example. It’s something you’d love to have in your own backyard – and surely boost your property’s curb appeal in an instant!

45. A budget-friendly path

Installing simple wooden supports is a quick and cost-effective way to build steps into a slope. Here’s an excellent example of loose stone stairs to accommodate an upward plot. You can either fill the steps with gravel or use topsoil for a cheaper option.

46. Create a flower trail

Create a lush and striking point of interest with a beautiful flower trail through your sloped yard. Best for cottage gardens, what a magical trail to walk through every morning! Add solar lights for a fairytale-like glow in the evening.

A man walking on a flower trail
Image Credit: Pxhere

47. Grow using pallets

It’s never too late to grow fresh greens in your sloped backyard. There’s always a find, and pallets are a great starting point.

You don’t have to fill your plot completely, a few rows will do, especially if you’re a beginner. Take a cue from this simple design. It provides ledges to help plants establish their roots and stabilise the soil.

48. A dedicated picnic area

Choose the best spot for garden picnics. It could be at the centre, or the higher level, or maybe at the bottom near the fire pit. Anyway, as long as you’ve got the best garden picnic setup ideas, you’re good to go!

The BillyOh Modbury might be the picnic table you’re looking for!

Picnic area on a sloped garden
Image Credit: Public Domain Pictures

49. Budget shade garden on a slope

Your shade garden must feature annuals, perennials, and shrubs that offer lush foliage without needing full sun. Choose somewhere in your yard, such as under a tree or beside a building.

Grow hosta, painted ferns, coral bells, and Astilbe for a natural, work-with-nature approach.

50. With a sheltered seating area

This sheltered seating area sure looks cosy and private. The setup would be great for anyone on a tight budget and with limited space.

If you don’t have any bricks handy, you can make the retaining wall from rocks or reclaimed wood instead.


With the right planning and a list of ideas like ours can help you make your steeply sloped backyard into an enjoyable and deluxe entertainment space! And if you want to draw more attention, other than lush plants, decorate your space with a pergola, garden pond, or a garden building.

If you love this guide and want more inspiration, take a look at our sloping garden ideas. We’ve compiled our favourite inspiration from around the web for you to get started on designing your slope.

Stay warm in your tiered garden with a BillyOh firepit, just click the button below:

Shop Fire Pits


There are so many ways to do so, but the common ones are adding a sunken patio (see #17) and stacking raised beds (see #28). If you want to go for a unique yet functional approach, make a terraced garden (see #25 & #29).

You can never go wrong with adding a wall stone and creating a defined route. A unique garden path with edged borders also works well. For a natural touch, grow ornamental grasses.

Go for sleek paving for a clean and minimalist look. Or border your levels in wood for a rustic edge. Levelling up your decking is also great as it allows you to create different levels in a sloped plot.

Yes, but the best way to do it is to construct terraces within the garden. For gentle slopes, timber retainers can be used to form small, stair-like terraces.

Yes, but it could take you some time to finish the job, unlike when done by professionals. Use a rake or a large flat spirit level to work around the area.


Use a string line to ensure the ground is levelled. Repeat this process until you have covered the whole garden area.