On Your Own Turf -- A 5 Step Guide To Prepping Your Backyard For A Wedding

Planning to have a wedding in your backyard? It's a great way to save a lot of money and time, while providing a venue that's personal and intimate. But since few backyards are wedding-ready all year long, it's important to spend some time preparing the space. Here is a checklist of 5 easy things to do to get your yard ready to go.

Irrigation. If you don't already have a good sprinkler system in place, now is the time to get one. Greening up your lawn and flowers is the number one step to take to get ready for a wedding -- and the one that may take the longest. So, get started now. Hiring a professional landscape service to design and install an automatic sprinkler system will save you a lot of time and frustration as the wedding approaches.

Assess the Space. Cramming too many guests into a small yard or too few guests in an oversize space is a recipe for a wedding that's memorable for the wrong reasons. Size your wedding guest list appropriately for the yard's confines. Use visual markers (such as twine, garden hoses or temporary furniture) to lay out where tables, chairs, the ceremony and any dance floor will go. Wander around your makeshift venue to determine how comfortable it is.

Hire Help. Hire a professional landscaping service for about 2 months before the wedding if you haven't already. Share your vision of the wedding venue and ask for help finding the right plants, flowers and hardscaping. If changes need made -- such as pruning, swapping out plants or repairing problem areas -- before the big day, you and your landscaper may need extra time, so work with them throughout the weeks before the ceremony.

Add Lighting. Unless the wedding and all its affairs will take place in broad daylight, you may need to consider adding some backyard lighting. This can include such diverse choices as:

  • placing stake lighting along paths guests will be walking
  • lighting up entrances and food stations
  • adding string lights to trees, buildings or fencing
  • installing romantic "moon lighting" in trees
  • replacing bulbs with soft colors

Think About Guest Needs. You'll probably need to provide some amenities for the day of the wedding. This means determining how much your guests will be using the home's interior, which bathrooms will be made available, where guests can park (or be shuttled) and what kind of shade or rain protection you will using.

Now that you've prepped your landscaping, upgraded the lighting and determined where things will go on the big day, you're ready to host a wedding in your own backyard. While it may take a little extra planning, a homemade venue like this can bring that final touch to a wedding that makes it even more memorable for you and your guests. Talk to a landscaper, like Wagner Sod, Landscaping and Irrigation Co., Inc, for more help.