Patio decorating complements both your home and garden

Use these patio decorating ideas to tie these areas together and enjoy the best of both worlds

patio photo courtesy of Pottery Barn

When considering patio decorating ideas, think of your patio as an outdoor room. It is a transitional space where you can enjoy the outdoors while having access to indoor comfort.

When I think of patios, I think garden living rooms. Patios to me conjure up semi-private corners of the property, paved with natural stones, furnished with wicker patio furniture, and surrounded by marvelous flowers and greenery.

Perhaps you have a totally different vision of a patio, but whatever that vision is, it is most likely of an outdoor private garden spot, where you can relax on a gorgeous day and take time to appreciate life and nature.

Patio decoration is an important part of any home landscaping project, and if approached with the whole garden in mind will create a patio that lives in harmony with the rest of the garden rather than one that conflicts with it!.

When planning your patio decorating, the first thing to do is analyze what you now have, think about what you want, and decide how you are going to get there from here. Print off the Analyze Your Outdoor Room worksheet here. Take your time to think about the questions and fill them out at your leisure. Once you have this completed, you will have some idea of what you want and what your needs are. Then come back here and read on to gather some new ideas and decorating concepts.

patio fence for privacy

Ensure your privacy when planning your patio decorating

Privacy is one of the more desirable elements that should be incorporated in your patio decorating. If you don’t have any boundaries, hedges, or fences around your space, here are a few ideas to consider or adapt for your surroundings:

  •  Look for antique metal fences at auctions or estate sales. If you can find them, old metal bed headboards make interesting fences. To get the privacy you are seeking, plant and train trailing vines around the fences. Until the plants are established and growing well, plant fast growing annuals like morning glories and train them to grow around the fences.
  •  If you want temporary privacy only in the summer season, make a frame of 2/2’s and install it along your boundary lines. String wire or fishline vertically along the frame on hooks about 2-4 inches apart and again plant fast growing climbing annuals. At the end of the season, cut off the lines, break down the 2×2’s and store them in the garage until next season.
  •  Old tall wooden shutters make a great windbreak and decorative screen. Attach 3-4 of them together accordion style and spray paint them to coordinate with your patio decorating scheme. Again, these can be folded and stored over the winter season.
  •  If you don’t want to totally shut off your neighbors, install long, sturdy, wooden benches along your boundary. Place your large container plants on these for extra height. Place your lawn furniture facing your patio in front of these benches. In this manner you will hide the benches. You will get extra height from the plants and greenery that adds to your sense of privacy but doesn’t create an eyesore for your neighbor.
  •  If you have a fence that makes you feel claustrophobic or is blocking a great view, there is no ruling that says you can’t cut a hole in it. A strategic cutout that gives access to a view or allows in more light or air may totally change the way you arrange the seating in your patio decorating, make your space more enjoyable, and still give you the sense of privacy you desire.

Zone Your Space

If you carry on various activities on your patio, such as barbecuing, entertaining, and general relaxation, consider zoning your area if you have the room.

You may only have a small area available for outdoor grilling, but grills come in all shapes and sizes. Check out my product review for the Weber Portable Gas Grill this little grill is a consistant best seller year after year. Check out what makes this grill so popular.

  • Just because the patio is outside, there is no reason a rug or other floor covering can’t be used to visually separate the dining space. There are many outdoor area rugs available. Canvas floor cloths also work well. Linoleum is available in different size rectangles and is low maintenance. Along with separating the dining area, the rug adds a sense of welcome and comfort to your patio decorating scheme.
  • The relaxation area can be separated with a decorative bamboo screen, a line of plant containers, or merely by placing a wicker sofa facing away from another area and creating a separate conversation area. Be sure to add some smaller pieces of furniture as a convenient place for putting down food and drink.
  • A great way to separate the zones in your patio is with the use of ground covers. There are hundreds of plant varieties that look wonderful, are easy to care for, can be walked on, and add marvelous scents to your patio area.