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Five Fabulous Ways to Enhance Your Backyard

Get your outdoor spaces set for summer by incorporating these DIY garden features, many of which make use of items you already have (or can pick up at garage sales or thrift stores).

Flowering Fountain
Recycle a defunct fountain into a garden focal point by filling the basins with potting soil and planting them with a colorful array of trailing blooms that will spill down the sides as they grow.

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Great Frame-up
Make a vertical planter from a combination of open picture frames and roping. This space-saving piece utilizes three square picture frames without the glass or backing. Drill a hole through each corner of each frame to fit the diameter of your chosen rope. If needed, reinforce the corners with metal mending plates or heavy-duty staples after drilling. Cut four equal lengths of rope and pull each through the corner holes of the top frame. Knot to secure under the frame, leaving excess at the top to knot together into a hanger. Repeat the process with the remaining frames, leaving enough space between each frame to accommodate your potted plants. Knot the rope ends at the top and bottom. Hang from an S-hook and fill with herbs or flowers in appropriate-sized tapered clay pots.
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From Eyesore to Eye-Catching
If you’ve had to take down a large tree and are left with an unsightly stump in your yard, put it to use as a whimsical table base. Level off the stump and attach a round concrete, stone, wood or resin tabletop. Surround it with charming chairs or stools to complete your unique picnic spot.
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Set in Stone
Stack up a natural rest stop for birds with a simple yet elegant flagstone birdbath. Start by preparing a level area on the ground. Choose flagstone pieces that are similar in size and have the flattest surface area available on both the top and bottom. Stack the rocks, turning each until it comes to rest in the flattest position possible. Continue stacking until you reach your desired height. Add a heavy or weighted bowl or dish atop the highest stone. Stack smaller stones or rock pieces inside the bowl as a landing area for the birds and then fill with water. Note: For households with children or pets, or to make a permanent birdbath, glue all the pieces together with a strong outdoor adhesive.
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Windows to Your World
Fashion old windows or window frames into a mini greenhouse suitable for showcasing a distinctive garden decoration, such as a piece of sculpture or ornamental accent. Situate it on a base of paving stones and simply lift up the entire structure to change the featured element to suit the season.
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For more gorgeous garden ideas, pick up your copy of Country Sampler Gardens.

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