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Jeffrey Carbo Landscape Architects and Site Planners

No longer are backyards the place for an occasional cookout. People are turning their outdoor spaces into year-round living rooms, complete with comfortable furnishings, fireplaces, speaker systems and even televisions. And with outdoor kitchens, you no longer have to resign yourself to the indoors while your guests sit out under the stars around a custom-built pool complete with a waterfall. Americans want their homes to be their paradise, and a well-landscaped and outfitted backyard is now a major part of that retreat.
Backyard renovations aren't cheap, though. For the works, expect to pay six figures. Even a small landscaping project can cost tens of thousands of dollars. So we talked to the pros to find out what features are worth the money and to get their tips on what you should -- and shouldn't -- do when renovating your yard. And we searched the country for incredible yard makeovers in a range of prices. Check out these before and after shots to see how landscape architects and designers turned ordinary properties across the nation into paradises.

By Cameron Huddleston

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