Patios are great spaces for outdoor living. Practically anything you can do indoors, from dining to snoozing, can be done on your patio. Well, these things are possible as long as you don't mind doing them out in the open. Or you can create a sense of privacy for your patio with well-placed landscaping.
Build a Planter
One way to create a barrier between your patio and the outside world is with a built-in planter. Start by choosing materials that complement your patio's style, such as adobe for a Mission-style home or wood for a Craftsman house. Have it built up about two feet tall on the side of your patio that is most open.
The key for privacy – and beauty – is in the plant selection. Look for plants that have similar needs but that grow up to four feet tall. For instance, nasturtium, bidens and snapdragons all grow fairly tall, and they have the same requirements of full sun and well-draining soil.
Plant a Tree
Another option, or one that can be used in conjunction with the planter, is to plant an ornamental tree. Start with a pretty tree that won't grow so big it overshadows the space entirely. Better Homes and Gardens suggests varieties such as crabapple, flowering dogwood or fringe tree. All three varieties can be kept to around 12 feet tall, yet they all provide shade, pretty blooms and fruits come fall.
For the location, choose a corner spot for which you'd like shade. Plant the tree at a distance that allows the roots to grow without disrupting the patio itself while still providing shade. Choose accent plants that look pretty through the seasons. For example, plants with variegated leaves such as hosta and Solomon's seal provide beauty from spring until late fall.
Add a Trellis
A trellis is another way to add both shade and privacy to your patio. Trellises come in a variety of styles and sizes and can even comprise a pergola or arbor.
As with the container, place a trellis where you most want a privacy screen. Many attractive installations include groundcover plants at the base. However, a trellis can also top a deck railing. Either way, for maximum shade and privacy, train trailing plants to climb the trellis. Rose or ivy is the classic. However, some vines provide beautiful blossoms, such as trumpet vine, hardy passionflower and clematis.
Contact a company like Beltran Paving & Landscape to add privacy and shade to your patio while maintaining its outdoor appeal.