19 Mid-Century Modern Landscaping Ideas to Perfectly Complement Your Retro Home Aesthetic

Unlike other recent trends in the design world, mid-century modern designs don’t seem to be losing steam anytime soon. On the contrary, we keep seeing numerous savvy design enthusiasts adopt this aesthetic’s sleek lines and practical features outdoors.

While excellent accessories and furniture are ideal for completing the look, carefully thought landscaping is integral for your mid-century modern outdoor space. The trick is to keep things clean and uncomplicated while emphasizing the hardscape and pleasures of outdoor living.

Transform your outdoor space with 19 mid-century modern landscaping ideas that perfectly complement your retro home aesthetic. Explore clean lines, geometric shapes, and organic elements to create a cohesive and stylish look. From sleek patio designs to vibrant plant choices, discover how to blend classic mid-century modern charm with contemporary landscaping for a timeless appeal.

Whether you have a tiny patio or a sprawling yard, these 19 mid-century modern landscaping ideas will level up your outdoor space and make it ready for a fun-filled summer.

Take a look!

1. Work with Pavers

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@Gary Fredricks Landscape Design

Mid-century modern landscaping ideas usually revolve around the mantra “Less is more,” and one way of going hardscape-heavy while maintaining a subtle look is to use a handful of pavers.

The black pebbles add depth and drama to this pathway, while succulents bring a touch of greenery. The decomposed gravel helps to define areas and keep them separate.

2. Keep It Simple

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Time and time again, the mid-century modern mania has proven that there’s strength in simplicity. This contemporary landscape is a testament to that.

The ornamental grasses prevent the yard from looking dull, allowing the home’s facade to shine.

3. Focus on Your Walkway

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@Jacklyn Curry Design

Your mid-century modern landscape wouldn’t be complete without an eye-catching walkway. In this front yard, natural stone pavers form a walkway that offsets the home while complementing its palette.

Lush foliage surrounding the walkway creates plenty of visual intrigue.

4. Bring a Coastal Feel

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Take inspiration from Palm Springs-inspired mid-century modern designs and incorporate Mediterranean plants to pay homage.

Native plants fill this space with nature’s green color, preventing the white wall from looking bare. The palm trees bring some height to the design.

5. Spruce it Up with a Container Garden

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@Quincy Jones

This long bench is typical of mid-century modern furniture, boasting sleek lines that complement the decking.

The pink cylindrical planters infuse the space with vibrant color and natural energy while maintaining that mid-century edge.

6. Bring Some Glam with Tiles

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@Garden Lights Landscape and Pool Development Inc.

This backyard combines a jacuzzi, pool, firepit, hammock, and lush green lawn to create the perfect mid-century modern oasis.

However, what really stands out are the brown tiles for the pool and firepit area. They imbue the space with a vibrant, earthy feel and create a stark contrast from the vibrant greenery.

7. Liven Up Your Conversations

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This backyard works overtime to bridge the gap between form and function in true mid-century modern fashion.

The firepit and natural stone floor fill the space with earthy energy while the fountain brings some tranquility. Colorful ambient hanging lights bring this courtyard to life as the sun sets over the flat roof and palm trees.

8. Capitalize on Raised Gardens

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If you want to take planter ideas to the next level, consider raised garden beds for your mid-century modern landscape project. This wooden raised garden bed adorns the side of the walkway, bringing much-needed color to the space.

The large boulder, low-slung plants, and colorful wall art in the background come together to create a dynamic look.

9. Repeat Elements

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This landscape idea brings mid-century modern signature simplicity to life through thoughtful repetition. The outdoor chaise lounges add to the contemporary vibe, while the firepit keeps everything cozy.

A pair of other outdoor chairs create another seating area, accented by a bonsai planter.

10. Play with Symmetry

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@On Site Landscape

One thing you can’t go wrong with your landscaping endeavors is styling with symmetry. This mid-century modern aesthetic revolves around organization, with the orderly layout bringing the vibe from the inside out. 

The above design implements this idea using mini aloe plants. The evenly-spaced pavers add to the contemporary feel, with the landscape’s geometrical layout echoing the home’s modern lines.

11. Make Use of Negative Space

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@Hush House

As much as you’d like to fill your landscape with lush greenery as far as the eye can see, creating some negative space is essential to allow your landscape and hardscape elements to stand out.

Here, gravel has been used to achieve exactly that! The shrubs have been strategically placed, helping define the space and provide balance.

12. Enjoy Your Outdoor Meals

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Mid-century modern aesthetic may be predominantly based in Palm Springs, but that shouldn’t discourage you from adopting this design even in a more temperate climate. One way of doubling down on mid-century modern vibes is focusing on your hardscaping.

In this design, the sleek, covered deck and outdoor kitchen bring a streamlined aesthetic that complements the mid-century modern home. The pared-back look allows the grove of trees in the background to take center stage with their towering heights.

13. Balance Hard and Soft

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This mid-century modern backyard has plenty of elements to adore, but what stands out most is how flowers and ornamental grasses soften the hardscape.

The chiminea firepit spices things up with a dose of color, while the Acapulco chairs reflect the home’s modern lines.

14. Bring Some Privacy

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As much as we love open, lush landscapes, it’s essential to maintain some level of privacy for your socially distanced hangouts and barbecues.

Here, the slatted panel wall provides a rustic background for the flowering grasses and separates the yard in fashion, while the palms and yucca trees further cement the Palm Springs dream.

15. Include a Lawn

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A neatly manicured lawn can do wonders for your landscape. It’s also another way of adopting the “less is more” mentality associated with mid-century modern landscaping ideas. 

The pristinely cut grass in this yard takes the mid-century modern design to a new level, paired with the house’s sleek lines to amp up the contemporary spirit.

16. Go for a Desert Look

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Instead of gracing your yard with a lawn, choose a low-maintenance, pared-back design like this landscaping idea. The pavers create a functional path, while pebbles act as an excellent substitute for finicky grass.

Desert-inspired plants and large boulders round out the look, creating a harmonious blend of textures and colors that offer a sense of calm and tranquility as you approach the front door.

17. Forego the Conventional Way

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Most of the time, landscaping and hardscaping seem to be at odds, with one element having to take a backseat for the other to succeed. However, this doesn’t always have to be the case, as seen in this design.

The pergola has been used to reinforce the landscaping, with hanging foliage, potted plants, and green grass giving the backyard a ground-to-sky appeal.

18. Make it Sleek with Floating Pavers

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Floating pavers juxtaposed with a sea of lush greenery lead to the entry of this luxe-looking mid-century modern home. This contemporary design focuses on minimalism, repetition, and bold shapes to form a deep connection between the landscape and architecture.

19. Add a Water Feature

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Staring at an empty, bare backyard can be daunting, but a simple water feature can do wonders in your landscaping project. Here, a captivating pondless waterfall with stunning fountain accents welcomes guests with the soothing sound of water.

Photo of author

Ivo Iv

Ivo is the owner of Decorhomeideas.com – he started the site back in 2013, when he was still working in a Home Decor company, but the passion for interior design and decorations lead to creating the site and following his own dream of creating a great Home Decor, DIY and Gardening online-magazine. EXPERTISE: Landscaping, Interior Design, Gardening, DIYer, Home Decor, Engineering, LOCATION: New York, USA TITLE: Chief Editor FOLLOW IVO IV on LinkedIn