A backyard is an extension of your indoor living space and yet, it is open and fresh. It could be made of stone, brick or concrete. You can add to it a grill, outdoor fireplace or fire pit as you desire. You could bring your dining table outdoors and make your meals fun. It might become your family’s favorite eating spot. You could add some interesting pieces of furniture to it so that you can all lounge there and chat with a cup of tea in your hands.

A patio can have many different functions so you would first need to plan it. Figure out what material works best for you. Would you like to cover the entire area or leave a part uncovered? Would you prefer a big fireplace or a smaller fire? Will you be using your patio as a dining or lounging area?

Planning the patio

Just like any other room in your house, the patio also needs careful planning. The choices you make will give everyone an idea of your style. Stone and terracotta are common in Mediterranean houses, brick is more often used in traditional homes. If you are unsure of what to choose, go for concrete which works well under all circumstances. Once you have figured out what foundation you want, you can decide all the other things. You may want to add a pergola, arbor, awning or trellis. You can decide whether you want some shade around or you’d like the sun to come streaming in. Accordingly, you can grow some pretty creepers and trees, bushes, flowering plants, etc.

Fireplaces are great if you live in a cooler place. If you live in a warmer place, consider having an outdoor kitchen and bar. Everyone looks forward to a grill and so you will need some good quality furniture to keep everyone comfortable. A hot tub and pool will be an added attraction at your parties.

Everything that you plan to keep outdoors must be weatherproof. At the same time, it can look as good as your living room because you can get waterproof rugs, pillows and chair cushions. Coffee tables,  chairs, armchairs are available in sets.  You can have special rope and string lighting. There are candles that keep the bugs away. A garden stool, torch and umbrella can also be fun to add.

Ways to spruce up your patio

  • Have a little water garden. The sound of flowing water is very peaceful. You can add little stones, and use bamboo.
  • Plant a few shady trees or plants and have flowering plants around.
  • Make the stone pathway to the patio fragrant. Plant some nice fragrant flowers along the path so that the scent reaches you when you are relaxing outdoors.
  • You can cover your patio with a pergola.
  • Add a flowering border to your patio to soften the edges.
  • Throw a colorful rug in. You can get water resistant rugs.
  • Use proper lighting. Add ambiance to the seating area or illuminate the dark corners.
  • Have containers all over, with pretty plants in them.
  • Add wind chimes. Hang them from a nearby tree. Wind chimes add a lovely melody.
  • Have a bird feeder. The songbirds will add to the melody of your patio when they visit.

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