Bring Beauty and Serenity to Your Backyard Deck

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A new or updated deck is the perfect way to bring beauty and serenity into your backyard. Create a peaceful, stress-free space as an extension of your home with a hardwood deck. Let's explore the many ideas for backyard deck designs using the best in natural wood to bring your space to life.

Whenever I visit a new location, whether vacationing at a stunningly landscaped resort, dining al fresco at a favorite restaurant or strolling the boardwalk at a local seaside town, I always look down at where my feet are. Mainly that’s because if I don’t pay attention, I’ll probably trip over something. But it’s also because I’m often inspired by the panorama of decking designs used to enhance the beauty of the environment.

I feel a great deal of serenity when I visit these places, and frequently find myself wishing I could bring that sensation back home with me. Only recently, I’ve taken that thought a step further: Why NOT bring it home? Why not create a backyard deck that reflects the feelings of peace and tranquility I’ve found elsewhere?

Ipe rooftop deck and walkway  with BuddahIpe hardwood creates a Buddhist inspired nook in a rooftop walkway in NYC.

I began my quest for a beautiful backyard oasis by exploring some ideas for outdoor deck flooring materials. There’s a lot to learn, but time and again my research brought me back to the innovative Mataverde Decking. Mataverde Decking is the best source for fine premium hardwood decking materials. And their philosophy really gelled with mine, especially their demand for quality, beauty and durability. 

Ipe hardwood pergola garden retreat with benchesA low-maintenance Ipe wood pergola retreat ready for yoga or reading.

The finest decking material of all, I discovered, is Mataverde® Premium Ipe Decking. Ipe hardwood decking has a reputation as the “best of the best” decking material, especially suited for the discriminating homeowner – like me! – who wants the very best real-wood, all-natural deck. It comes in a wide range of colors and graining options, ranging from tans to olive browns to reddish and dark browns, with spectacular graining variations similar to what you’d find in a hardwood floor inside your home. An Ipe deck is truly a striking, one-of-a-kind work of art.



Urban deck with Ipe benches and planter boxesA pergola overlooks an urban oasis made with Ipe benches and planter boxes.

In my travels, I’ve seen Ipe hardwood used in oceanfront resorts in the Bahamas, on the shaded porch decks at a magnificent Rhode Island hotel (pic below), seaside at Malibu and in the luxurious, serene backyards of some of my most discerning neighbors.




hotel_007The famous Ocean House Hotel in Watch Hill, RI chose Mataverde Ipe for their  multiple decks overlooking the ocean.


If you’re in a rainy or humid area like I am, you’ll also be happy to know that Ipe Decking is resistant to fungal decay and termites, and it has become the benchmark for all exterior hardwoods; all other decking wood species are compared to it. Ipe Decking also lasts much longer than any other decking material, giving you many years of comfort, beauty, relaxation and peace of mind. 

Mataverde® 100% Pure FSC Machiche Decking is all heart – and heartwood – with colors ranging from light to reddish brown to medium chocolate brown; it is among the most popular and beautiful styles of premium hardwood decking. Sustainably harvested and affordably priced, this beautiful and durable hardwood decking will age gracefully to a mellow silvery patina if left to weather naturally. In fact, one of the things that draws me to this decking is the variety of weathering colors it can produce. I love playing around with color and design – and I’m also easily bored – so it’s fun for me to envision one season having quite a different look than the next with just one wood providing numerous color options! Take a look at how this wood weathered over three years time on this California deck:

Machiche decking new and weathered CaliforniaThis Machiche hardwood deck and table shown new (top) and three years later (bottom) shows the coveted silver patina of natural weathering.



If, for you, relaxing means family and there’s always a lot of activity on your deck – a summer full of cookouts, daily trips to the pool or hot tub, or a constant round of entertaining – then Mataverde® Premium Cumaru Hardwood Decking may be the best fit. Cumaru offers long-lasting strength, durability and beauty at an affordable price point. How durable is it? (I thought you’d never ask!) Mataverde® Cumaru is so tough it was the decking material chosen for the Coney Island Boardwalk reconstruction! I challenge you to attract more visitors than that!

Mataverde® Cumaru Decking can range in color from yellowy brown to reddish brown to a nearly purplish cordovan color. Although its coarser graining can appear similar to red oak, the exotic color range of Cumaru is spectacularly different. And the grain variation is both dramatic and beautiful. Like a hardwood floor inside your home, no two pieces of Cumaru decking will have exactly the same appearance. These rich variations reflect the untamed beauty of this spectacular, all-natural exotic hardwood species.

Cumaru Montauk Pool and Lounge chairsA Cumaru poolside deck enhances a private getaway just a step outside this Montauk, Long Island back door.


Cumaru exhibits lots of tropical character, striping and color variation, and will develop a silvery gray patina over time if you choose to let your decking weather naturally. If you want to re-create the tropical ambiance of your last island vacation, this is the backyard decking material for you! Just add a little Jimmy Buffett and a few umbrella drinks, and you’re all set!


Mataverde® Garapa Decking is made from one of the most popular high-density hardwood species. Gorgeous, durable and lighter colored, it features character striping and color variation that will turn a gentle silver shade if left natural. And while it looks soft and satiny, it’s still considerably stronger, harder and heavier than oak and extremely resistant to shrinking, splintering, cupping, twisting, checking and warping. Its low cost also makes it a very affordable choice as a decking material.

Backyard Garapa Deck with wicker chairsA naturally warm, light-toned variation in Garapa creates a gorgeous porch deck to take a few minutes - or an hour - to yourself any time of the day. 


Garapa's beautiful golden tones will enhance your deck and add a touch of serenity with a warm natural look. It ranges in color from a sun-kissed honey blonde to a rich golden brown, which will darken slightly with age. While its soft ribbon-like graining is similar to maple or mahogany, Garapa decking has a beauty all its own. I’ve spied this outdoor deck material in a variety of environments – from a lakefront deck in Maine, to a rooftop garden in NYC, to a boardwalk in coastal New Jersey. Its versatility is matched only by its beauty!

There's no doubt that a serene backyard environment is a place we could all benefit from. What will your oasis look like? 

Ipe pergola and deck retreat

An Ipe pergola and planter box in an urban backyard.


Don't miss these helpful planners and resources:

The Ultimate Guide To Decking

Decking Photo Gallery



For more ideas on creating your beautiful outdoor paradise, follow us on Pinterest and start designing your backyard paradise today!



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