Ideas for Landscaping a Patio

Patios provide a good spot to blend outdoors with indoors. This midway point between the house and the yard allows people to enjoy the fresh air from a comfortable, sheltered chair or table. A desirable patio landscape enables families and friends to relax and unwind in comfortable areas while enjoying the sights, sounds and smells of the yard.

Foundation

Install a suitable material for the surface of your patio. Concrete holds up well to years of traffic and provides a smooth surface for outdoor recreation, patio furniture and potted plants. Besides this traditional surface, consider using patio pavers, stones, bricks or tiles. Use a durable material to ensure a well-built patio. Choose a material that reflects your personality and blends in with your yard. Formal bricks and poured concrete complement manicured yards, while flagstones mingle well with native landscape designs.

Container Plants

Bring the beauty of the yard onto the patio. Enhance the feeling of being outside by selecting attractive plants to grow in containers near the entryway and conversation areas. Add a splash of color with flowering varieties, such as fairy roses, marigolds, lobelias and petunias. Create a small, culinary garden by planting a few vegetables, such as tomatoes and peppers, in large containers. Interesting specimens, such as potted citrus trees and palm trees provide a tropical atmosphere in patio spaces. Move tender varieties of potted plants indoors during the winter months to avoid frost damage.

Lighting

Install some lights to provide a safe and functional space for evening enjoyment. Consider placing small, edging lights around the border of your patio or leading from the patio to a walkway. Use directional lights to emphasize individual features, such as a table, plant or fountain. Provide plenty of light around steps and uneven areas to guard against accidents.

Shade

Shield the sun from certain areas of your patio by planting vines and trees. Place vines and lattice near the edge of your patio to create a living screen between the patio and the yard. Place small shade trees near the periphery of your patio. Use small to average size varieties to provide a little shade while still allowing a view of the remaining yard. Avoid planting trees that produce fruit or large seedpods. These trees often create a mess on patio floors and furniture.

Keywords: patio design, outdoor room, landscape ideas

About this Author

Laura Dee is a writer, artist, and the co-owner of Wallace & Wallace Copywriting,an online business which specializes in providing marketing materials and copy to various companies. She has written for Demand Studios since 2008 and is currently working on a series of childrens' picture books.