Tips to Improve the Functionality and Atmosphere of Your Patio with Plants

Written by Nicole Martins

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No two patios are exactly alike

While it is very common to find a patio directly offrepparttar back ofrepparttar 140716 house, there are no rules or regulations that make thisrepparttar 140717 ultimate location. Also, patios come in various sizes and shapes and may contain any number of hardscape materials: flagstone, concrete, tile, brick, pebbles and such. As for layout, a large patio may include definition and enclosure with low walls and planting beds; while a small patio may have just a ground plane dressed in flagstone with enough room for a table and chairs (see and some planters and pots. Each patio example can take full advantage of plant forms to create pleasing effects that will maximize every ones pleasure outdoors.

Small patios: Designing with plants

Small patio spaces rely not so much onrepparttar 140718 horizontal plane as onrepparttar 140719 vertical plane whererepparttar 140720 greenery of plants can produce handsome walls, create a sense of enclosure and privacy, and, screen out unwanted views. Vines are very useful in small spaces, and garden structures such as trellises and pergolas can assist them to grow upward without claiming too much valuable patio space. This is especially true if plants are grown inrepparttar 140721 ground versus being planted in pots which will likely take up more room. For certain climates, evergreen shrubs such as boxwood and privet provide permanent architecture year round and can be clipped to maintainrepparttar 140722 right scale for your needs. To find comparable plant choices for your zone consult with local nurseries and landscapers. Ask for recommendations of upright or vertical shrubs and trees that donít take up a lot of horizontal space and/or can handle being pruned to keep them upright.

With all ofrepparttar 140723 nice plant choices available, make use of perennials, shrubs and trees to create inviting effects. A patio shining with beautiful hardscape is wonderful, but dull withoutrepparttar 140724 bountiful greenery of plants to balance.

Nicole Martins is a contributing author and publisher to, an online resource that provides you with great information, articles of interest and reviews of the best selling outdoor furniture and patio accessories online.

Fine Gardening Secrets Revealed

Written by Sally Summers

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I want to sharerepparttar secret and also tell you about Fine Gardening because it'srepparttar 140715 perfect companion for every gardener -- no matter where you live, no matter if your available gardening space is a window box or an acre of fertile ground! Here's why: The expert advice and techniques you get exclusively in Fine Gardening are brought to you by botanists, entomologists, nursery specialists, commercial growers, curators, landscape architects and groundskeepers, so you can be assured that you're getting accurate, tested, reliable information that you can use to cultivate everything fromrepparttar 140716 simple torepparttar 140717 spectacular.

As you can see, Fine Gardening knows what's important to gardeners like you and me!

With well wishes for your own fabulous flowers,

Sally Summers is Editorial Director at and You can read her weekly blog at where she talks about today's most popular magazines and how they can enrich your daily life.

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