Creative Ways to Landscape a Sunny Backyard
|Many flowering perennials and shrubs love sun.|
A full sun exposure can be a blessing or a curse: There are many attractive plants that enjoy soaking in the sun, but the constant heat can pose challenges for an outdoor patio or deck. When landscaping a sunny yard, choose to emphasize your exposure or find ways to address the challenges posed by excess heat.
Sun-loving landscaping ideas:
Many flowering perennials and edibles love sun. Plants that do well in a full sun exposure include:
- Flowering shrubs and vines like butterfly bush, jasmine, honeysuckle, bougainvillea
- Fruit trees such as cherry, pear, apple, or peach
- Herbs such as basil, lavender, and rosemary
- Perennial flowers such as coneflower, cosmos, dahlia, day lily, delphinium, and geranium
- Succulents like cacti and aloe
- Tropicals such as canna, hibiscus, and gardenia
- Vegetables such as zucchini, eggplant, pepper, and tomato
When planting flowers and shrubs, select a variety of plants that bloom at different times of the year and in different colors. This increases visual interest and gives you something to look at all year round. Plants not recommended for full sun exposures include ivies and ferns. Many plants enjoy partial sun or full sun, and can be planted beneath taller trees and shrubs.
|A patio umbrella gives you the option of shade or sun.|
On hot days, it can be downright unpleasant to be outside in the heat. Consider adding a shade element to your yard to increase your comfort and provide usable outdoor living and lounging space.
Elegant, inexpensive solutions that add some shade to a sunny yard include:
- Awnings or shade sails: Select either an attachable awning, which attaches to your home exterior and creates a shady space, or a freestanding awning, which can be moved anywhere in the yard to create a temporary shade zone. Awnings that retract offer shade when you need it. Similar to awnings, shade sails connect to structures to create a shade canopy. While they can be taken down easily, then cannot be relocated.
- Patio umbrellas: A patio umbrella over an exterior table gives you the option of shade when you want it and sun when you don't. Look for an umbrella that's wide enough in diameter to cover the entire table and can easily be raised and lowered.
- Trees: If you're patient, you can plant shade trees in your sunny yard and reap the benefits of their shade as they mature.
- Of course, if you want to soak up as much sun as possible, you may prefer a sun lounge over a shade oasis. Place lounge chairs, outdoor pillows, and low tables on a flat location within the yard to create a small sun lounging area.
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