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Front Yard Sidewalk Ideas to Improve Your Home's Curb Appeal

By Sarah Finazzo March 2, 2023

front yard sidewalk landscaping ideas

Neighborhoods with sidewalks are often sought after suburban locations! A sidewalk creates a safe place for someone to walk their dog, go for a jog, or ride bikes with their kids. However, these simple front yard features can often be ignored or are left with two simple strips of grass on either side. However, there's so much more you can do to give your front yard personality and improve your curb appeal.

In this post we will dig into why you should pay attention to your front walkway and give you some ideas beyond two strips of grass!

Why Your Front Sidewalk Matters

Updating the sidewalk can make a significant difference in your curb appeal for several reasons. Why?

  1. Welcoming Feel: A well-designed sidewalk with attractive landscaping will create a warm and inviting entrance to your home.
  2. Improves Property Value: A well-manicured front yard can increase the value of your property and make it more attractive to potential buyers.
  3. Enhances the Overall Aesthetic: Updating around your sidewalk can help to harmonize the look of your home and the surrounding landscape.
  4. Improves Access & Flow: A well-designed sidewalk can increase the functionality of your front yard, making it easier to navigate and providing a safe walkway for visitors and residents.
  5. Add Functionality: A entry sidewalk garden can be a feature that serves a specific function for your property. For example, perhaps you add arborvitae along a fence for privacy. You can add gravel or rocks to help with the drainage in your yard, and much more.

Remember before you do any work to your sidewalk, it's important to check your local zoning and building codes.

Things to Consider Before Updating Your Sidewalk

Before you start updating the landscaping around your sidewalk, you should consider the following:

  1. Traffic: Think about the foot traffic in your area before you create your plan. For example, do you have little kids riding bikes that might veer off onto your garden? Do you have a steady stream of dog walking past your home?
  2. Climate and weather conditions: Choose plants and flowers for any updates that are appropriate for your local climate and weather conditions.
  3. Soil type: Determine the type of soil in your front yard and choose plants that are suitable for the soil conditions.
  4. Sun exposure: Identify the sun exposure in your front yard, and choose plants that will thrive in the available light conditions.
  5. Space: Measure the area you have available for landscaping and choose plants that will fit within the space. Don't forget to think about their mature size!
  6. Maintenance: Consider the time and effort required to maintain the landscaping and choose low-maintenance plants whenever possible.
  7. Style: Decide on a style that fits the overall look of your home, yard and neighborhood, such as formal, cottage, modern or naturalistic. This will affect how you (or your designer) creates your landscape plan.
  8. Budget: Plan a budget for the landscaping project, including the cost of plants, materials, and any necessary equipment.

Sidewalk Landscaping Ideas

Sidewalks are an integral part of any neighborhood, here are some fun inspiration tips to make yours stand out!

Garden Wall with Colorful Flowers

A garden wall bordering a sidewalk can provide a sense of boundary and privacy, while also serving as a backdrop for a beautiful sidewalk garden. While a garden wall can create a boundary, it can also help to create a welcoming and cozy feel to the front of the home.

Front yard walkway ideas with a low garden wall and attractive plants
modern front garden along a walkway with mulch and perennials

Thoughtful Curvilinear Garden Beds

Curvilinear sidewalk garden beds give purpose and intent to the space and are a great way to reduce your turf lawn and add pollinators or other native plants that are beneficial to your landscape. To create a cohesive yard, we recommend utilizing a similar plant palette to the rest of your front yard. Use plants that bloom at different times to give passerby's something to look at!

a home's exterior that is enhanced by a sidewalk garden next to the front lawn

A Native Garden

This yard removes all lawn and instead focuses on native plants, grasses and flowers that will thrive in this California setting. The planting palette will require less water and there's no need for a lawn mower - which is a big plus for the environment and your wallet.

a side walk garden along a front walkway that has a no mow yard

Drought Resistant

Xeriscaping is another way to remove grass and create interest around your sidewalk. This drought resistant planting plan fills the entire property extending from the street sidewalk to the front door! Again, no mower and maintenance will be much lower with these climate acclimated options.

corner walk way with xeriscape gardens planted
a house with a front porch, pavers and drought tolerant plantings all the way to the walkway

Mailbox Street Side Garden

If you aren't ready to do a full street side planting, start micro with the small space around your mailbox! Plant your favorite flowers that have different bloom times and get maximum enjoyment out of your daily trip to retrieve the mail!

a garden around a mailbox on a front walkway

Street Side Fence

A fence in your front yard creates a natural space to add a garden around. Whether it's a modern wrought iron fence or a white picket fence, the area around it and next to your sidewalk can host a beautiful garden to enjoy year round. When planning the area remember to include a variety of layers and textures to create a stunning arrangement.

Sidewalk garden with clean lines and visual interest
a walkway with a fence and blooms on either side of the fence

A Garden Bed Around a Tree

If you have trees close to the sidewalk or walkways, you can add a garden bed around them. It's a natural space to remove grass and create a garden. It can add interest to your front walkway and again, is a good way to achieve less maintenance.

a garden around trees and the front walkway of this house

A Separate Garden Street Side

Don't feel like the street side garden has to match the rest of your landscape on the other side of the sidewalk. A great low maintenance ground cover or simple ornamental grasses can be a nice, simple option to plant on street facing.

front yard walkway ideas with a ground cover sidewalk gardens in front of a house

There are many creative ways to design and utilize the sidewalk area in your front yard. By thinking outside of the box and having fun with the space, you can create a unique and visually appealing entrance to your home that reflects your personal style and personality.

About Tilly

Tilly’s easy online landscape design process has been embraced by homeowners across the country and in Canada. From Texas, Florida, Colorado to Illinois - we have a team for you! Tilly designs front yards, backyard or your entire property. We match you with a professional landscape designer who is familiar with your region to help you create the perfect custom plan for your outdoor space. 

To start our process you’ll fill out a questionnaire about your property that helps our design team understand your goals, needs and existing landscape. You can add 3d renders, lighting plans or side yards to your design package. You’ll then connect with your designer on a video call to meet them, show them your space and talk about your priorities.

When you receive your design you will be able to purchase your plants at a discounted rate through our team of plant experts and have them delivered directly to your curb. Tilly can also provide recommendations of local installers who can help you complete your landscape project.

Tilly also offers individual DIY projects. With DIY Spaces, you are matched with a landscape designer who will design a custom project for your yard. This will include a scaled drawing, lists of materials (which you can order directly through Tilly to install your project) and detailed installation instructions to help even a first time DIY’er tackle a yard project!

Wherever you are in your yard journey, we can help!

sidewalk landscaping and other features

Read more about: Landscape Design Tips