flip it - another thought is putting the "shelf" on the front porch side (behind the swing) with trailing plants in front of the porch, hostas below, gate in front of cans and air conditioner thingie, and the lattice fence blocking off the neighbor's yard
Easy Front Yard Garden Plan. free Planting Guide for this garden includes a larger version of the illustration, a detailed layout diagram, a list of plants for the garden as shown, and complete instructions for installing the garden
Better Homes and Gardens has garden gate ideas like this one. We'd need to add a few more rakes, facing down and even truncated to fill in the small gaps that the deer seem to push through.
side yard idea - the curve of the path adds interest and takes the eye around the garden, not just straight down.