Large, awkward slope area

Alexandria, VA(Zone 7a)

Hi there! I'm coming up to my 4th year building gardens at our home in Northern VA. On one side of our home, our yard slopes fairly steeply down away from our house. Mowing this portion is really difficult, especially in the back part of the yard where it slopes down to a fence. The front part slopes down and plateaus at the edge of our neighbor's property, and a line of Lelands they have planted there. I would like to take our the lawn in much of this area and do some garden design to make things easier. The problem that I'm having is with the design - how to structure a garden that is sloping down and into a wooden fence? Would planting shrubs and taller plants at the bottom of the slope look strange? From the top of the slope to the bottom is about 10' and the change in height (? not sure how to word that correctly...) is about 4' so it's fairly steep. Obviously I'd like the plants to be low-maintenance, and I would prefer native plants/cultivars or non-invasive species. I'm open to any suggestions!

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