It’s hard to believe that with a long, cold, dreary winter behind us, there would be any concern about creating shade. But the fact is, as much as we’re welcoming the sun, the spring and summer months can quickly become unbearable if you don’t have any respite from the blaring rays. Now is the time to think about ways you can add shade and get the full enjoyment out of your property as the weather warms up.
You can create natural shade on your property by strategically locating trees around the living area to cast a shade. Fast-growing vines like Grape vines or English ivy are also natural shade providers. Planting vines at the base of a trellis or pergola will add aesthetic interest while also providing some functional shade as they grow. Plants and shrubs can also be effective in cooling hot pavement. Strategically planted shrubbery will help keep your concrete cooler on bare feet—especially important if you have little ones running around.
Building a Structure
Whether it’s a tall fence, a pergola, or a full-blown roof structure, building a covered area not only creates shade but also defines a space, making it a more intimate living area. Adding a roof to your deck or patio also has the added benefit of providing some protection from the rain and wind. That means that even on a rainy evening you can still cook a delicious steak on the grill. A roof also gives you more landscape lighting options and even the option for built-in features like outdoor ceiling fans or speakers. These kinds of add-ons go a long way in creating a true outdoor living room for your utmost enjoyment.
If a full-blown structure isn’t in the budget, shade cloths are a whimsical way to create shade. This less expensive alternative can still provide a unique design style to your space. Outdoor umbrellas have also come a long way in terms of their looks and are a cost-effective and simple option for shading a deck or patio. A high-quality umbrella made of first-rate fabric will not only block the sun’s rays but add color and interest to your space.
Keep in mind: No matter what option suits your budget or style, adding shade is a worthwhile pursuit. As the warmer weather beckons us to spend more time outside, shade solutions will help keep the space cool and therefore increase the amount of time spent there. Of course, protection from the sun’s harmful, skin-cancer-causing UV rays is also incredibly important. As you begin to consider shading your space, we can help you explore your options and find what will work best for you.