Backyards that run in an upward slope pose several different problems. If your yard is one big grassy area, mowing the lawn can be difficult. However, if you don't landscape your yard correctly, you could end up with a flooded patio or a mini-landslide when it rains. Fortunately, with a little creativity and the help of a good landscaping contractor, you can transform your backyard hill into a beautiful, functional space.

Control Excess Water

One of the first things that you need to discuss with your landscaping contractor is water control. It doesn't matter whether you have a large or small hill in your backyard. Your house is sitting at the bottom of it, so rain and melting snow can quickly become a problem. Fortunately, there is an easy solution. Install a French drain system. The series of perforated pipes are designed to direct the water running off of the hill in your backyard away from your house. It's a simple process.

The pipes are installed in small trenches near the base of the hill. As the water runs down the hill, it goes into the holes in the pipes, and the pipes direct the water away from your home. French drain systems might work well, but they probably aren't something that you want to see in your yard. So, talk to your landscaping contractor about creating flower beds near the bottom of the hill and installing the pipes beneath the flower bed.

Just remember, your plants need nutrients from the soil to thrive. While water will seep down into the soil, it could accumulate quickly in a heavy rainstorm. So, in order to give the plants the nutrients from the soil they need and design a system that allows rainwater to enter the pipes quickly, you need to:

Create a Flat Portion of Land

It's unlikely that the back of your house butts directly up to the hill in your backyard, so you probably already have a section of flat land between your house and the hill. Unfortunately, if the only flat space in your yard is small, it can be difficult to do everything you want to do with your backyard.

If the flat portion of the land in your backyard is too small, you can expand it. You need to talk to your landscaping contractor about excavating and grading the land at the bottom of the hill to make more space. To do this, the landscapers will remove a portion of the land at the bottom of the hill, grade the land to ensure it's flat, and build a retaining wall around the bottom of the hill to prevent landslides. Once you have a large area of flat space, you can create a place to entertain friends, install a hot tub, set up a play area for your children, or section off a grassy spot for your dogs to enjoy.

Plant Trees, Shrubs, and Flowers

If you don't want to mow your lawn uphill, you should consider planting trees, shrubs, and flowers to turn the hilly portion of your backyard into a garden. To keep your yard aesthetically pleasing, plant everything in order of height. For example, line the top portion of the hill with trees, plant shrubbery or taller plants below the trees, and plant small flowers in flower beds along the lower portion of the hill -- right above your retaining wall.

While it may take a little more creativity and planning to transform a backyard that's mostly an upwards sloping hill into a place for your family to enjoy, it can be done. With the help of a local landscaping contractor, you can turn your backyard into a place that you love.