Hey guys, Im not a professional and never have been. Just a homeowner who loves to take care of my yard, which is why I joined this site (and i love it) anyway, I have decided to do an entire backyard transformation this spring and Iv gotten alot done in the last 3 weeks considering Iv done it all myself - well my 10 year old son has helped a little anyway, I live in a neighorhood and have a small yard, so most all the "ideas" Iv seen in magazines, tv shows, etc wouldnt work for me. So I kinda just took little things here and there that I liked and put them all together. You can see in my before picture, my yard was bare and nothing to it. Here is what Iv done flagstone patio finish pergola (stain, lights, etc) outdoor kitchen fixed fence (and bleached/stained cedar color) hot tub added little fountain, planters, etc Now that Im basically done with all the "hard work", I want to do the fun stuff. I want to landscape and get the grass looking spectacular! I basically have 2 areas I want to do something in and hopefully you can get an idea from the pictures I have on my phone. 1. the corner area with the bench. I removed all the overgrown plants and left only the purple tree and the other 2 things... Id like something in front and around the bench that will not be very invasive, stay low so you can see the bench, yet bring in color and maybe even attract butterflys for the kids 2. fence line. as you can see, my yard slops down quite a bit toward the fence. when standing up on the level part of my yard (where patio and hot tub is) you can see right down into the yard behind me and look the people face to face if they are outside. So I want to plant something along the fence line that will grow up and give me some privacy. I was thinking of 2-3 crape myrtles and keep them trimmed up as a tree shape. That way they give privacy above the fence line, yet do not take up much space in the yard since I do not have a very big yard. But my question is, I kinda want to do something around the crape myrtles and not just throw them in the middle of the grass... looking for ideas to either border the trees or do little garden area around them or something? 3. other corner of my yard where my big oak tree is, is completely bare. I guess because of all the shade it hasnt grown there. Last year i put down some st. augustine sod in some other spots of the yard, and its taking over. I think it might grow in this area so may put some sod down there. But should I just leave it all grass or anyone have any nice landscape ideas for down there?? There are 2 electrical boxes down there which kinda ruin things, but I know there are ways to hide them. sorry it was long, but wanted to give background... thanks very much for any help/advice guys, id really appreciate it!!!