Experts reveal the top backyard color trend for 2023 – and we can't wait to try it

Traditional terracotta will bring natural warmth to our outdoor spaces next year, according to insider experts

Mediterranean style garden with large terracotta plant pots
(Image credit: itsabreeze photography/Getty Images)

Trend forecasters are saying that terracotta will be everywhere in 2023, finally helping to banish the grays and neutrals which have dominated outdoor furniture and accessories, with this natural hue reflected in planting too. 

Looking at garden trends for the year ahead, the new US Garden Trends Report (opens in new tab)  says, 'terracotta can add warmth and vibrancy,' to any outdoor scheme, which is perhaps just what we all need in challenging times. 

Why is terracotta is a top backyard trend for 2023?

'Terracotta gardening is trending for 2023 because it is an easy way to add texture and color to your garden,' says Stacie Krljanovic, head groundkeeper at Patio Productions (opens in new tab)

This rich, yet neutral shade lends itself to all kinds of garden design ideas, from Moroccan or Mediterranean-inspired schemes for hot, arid zones to the traditional appeal of an English-style country garden. 

'Terracotta is soft, but it’s a very powerful color,' says designer Martine Claessens (opens in new tab). 'It has a lot of the qualities of orange – enthusiasm, spontaneous, gives energy and brings joy – but it has a more comforting feeling than orange because of the mix with brown.'

garden chair with a terracotta colored cushion and blanket on it

(Image credit: Waltons)

Plants are natural partners

The expert trend forecasters are saying that the terracotta trend will also influence flowers and plants, from pansies to prize dahlias, just two blooms which come in a range of coppery hues. 

Their recommendations for your pots and flower beds also include the vibrant Sombrero Adobe Orange Coneflower (available at Amazon) (opens in new tab), a delicate Tecoma, ‘Red Hot’ (available at Monrovia) (opens in new tab), the vibrant Veranda Mango rose (available at Amazon) (opens in new tab) and long-lasting Coppertop Sweet Viburnum (available at Plants By Mail) (opens in new tab)

'The new growth on this gorgeous and low-maintenance landscape star, Coppertop Sweet Viburnum, is dark maroon to terracotta, providing season-long appeal,' says a US Garden Trends Report spokesperson. 

bright orange flowers of Echinacea Sombrero Adobe

Sombrero Adobe Orange Coneflower

(Image credit: Clare Gainey/Alamy Stock Photo)

Terracotta is affordable and recyclable

If you’re looking for garden planter ideas 'terracotta is often seen as a more affordable option than some other materials available on the market,' says organic gardener Lindsey Hyland, founder of Urban Organic Yield (opens in new tab)

'So if you're looking for an affordable way to add some warmth to your garden, terracotta may be the right choice for you.'

There are plenty of good-value terracotta planters available online at the likes of Amazon (opens in new tab), but it's also possible to find beautifully aged terracotta pots second-hand, online, at yard sales or in reclamation yards. And of course, should a terracotta pot get broken, the pieces make perfect crocks in the bottom of other planters to aid drainage, because terracotta is a permeable material.

row of aged looking terracotta plant pots in a garden

Plant pots from Idyll Home (opens in new tab)

(Image credit: Idyll Home)
Jayne Dowle
Freelance writer

Jayne Dowle is an award-winning gardening, homes and property writer who writes for publications including Sunday Times Home, Times Bricks & Mortar, Grand Designs, House Beautiful and The Spectator. She was awarded the Garden Journalist of the Year accolade at the Property Press Awards in 2021.