Nothing beautifies the front of a home like an expansive porch. Graceful railings, potted plants and rocking chairs make this the perfect outdoor living space. Sunlight penetrating this area during the hottest part of the day can increase the cost of cooling the home in the summer. Direct sun can also damage shady-loving plants placed as accent decorations on the porch. Shading a porch allows the homeowner to conserve energy and still use this wonderful space all day long.
A permanent solution to block the sun for a porch area involves the installation of lattice sections. Lattice allows dappled sunlight to filter through to the porch area while still allowing movement of air. Sections can be placed at intervals along the porch to block seating areas and to increase privacy. Plant climbing vines in the garden around the porch and train the plants to the lattice to create a haven of privacy very similar to a garden.
Shutters offer the option of closing off the porch area entirely from the hot afternoon sun. Shade can be installed on railings or porch hip walls to open and close as needed. Choose full shutters to completely block the sun or louvered slat shade to allow small amounts of sunlight onto the porch area. Fold shutters out of the way during the cooler parts of the day.
Bamboo Roller Shades
Bamboo roller shade mount to the ceiling or upper wall of a porch. These wooden shades contain slats of bamboo spaced tightly together and fitted with a rope and pulley to control shade movement. Unroll the shades completely to block light and pull the rope to roll the shades to the ceiling when not needed.
Curtains might seem like a misnomer on the porch but nothing works better to define porch space as a viable outdoor living area. Choose sheers or thicker material to match your porch furnishings. Mount standard curtain rods to suspend the curtains. Include tiebacks to pull the curtains out of the way during shady times of the day.
Adding an awning to the exterior of the home creates a permanent solution to the porch shade issue. Awnings attach to the side of the house, extending the shaded area well past the edge of the home foundation. Awnings help control temperature in the home and prevent hot sunlight from beating on the side of a house or porch area. Models include permanent, fixed models as well as motorized models that can be opened and closed based on the homeowner's needs.