So you’re in love with the tiny house movement, but not so much the tiny patio. Or you moved into the cutest little apartment but the hotelesque balcony just isn’t cutting it for you. Not having a yard can be a huge blessing, freeing up time previously spent on yard work to pursue other interests and passions. But when you don’t have a yard, where do you go to relax? Can you make a small patio or balcony your own little outdoor space? Yes, with a little help. Try these simple and pretty inexpensive ways to give yourself a little privacy so you can have your own outdoor retreat, even in a small space.
1. Tall Plants
Tall plants are your friends here. Horsetail or Equisetum is particularly useful here, priding itself on being one of the oldest plants in the world. This Paleozoic plant, also going by the name of snake grass and puzzlegrass, is understandably pretty hard to kill. They can grow up to 1.5 meters tall (although there are other varieties that boast even more growth), and they grow without a lot of extra care. Although you might want to keep it in a planter to control its spread, this plant can be the perfect solution to your privacy problems.
2. Tall Planters
If you can’t find tall plants, or your prefer a more solid form of privacy, buy or make tall planters that give your plant life some lift. These have the added benefit of being stylish, and you can even make one out of a simple pallet. Combine with a tall species of plant to give yourself fence-like privacy.
If you want privacy but you’re not willing to give up total sunlight, a trellis can be a great solution. Cheap and easy to set up, trellises block some of the worst sunlight and give you an added measure of privacy, while still allowing you to see outside of your porch. You can combine these with certain species of ivy to make a living wall, if you so choose. The options are pretty open here, so show some creativity.
For a lighter, airy type of privacy, you can hang a curtain from the top of your balcony or patio cover. Curtains double as a form of decoration, meaning you can use them to spice up your potentially bland patio. They also make an outdoor area seem homey, which is perfect if you’re intending to use your space as a second living area on nice days.
5. Retractable Side Awnings
They really make these. Basically, these awnings are like the sideways version of those ones you see on TV. Simply retract, place, and enjoy your privacy. They come in a multitude of colors, and they’re an easy way to separate your porch from prying eyes.
Vines are a classic. If you’ve got any kind of wall, plant some vines nearby and watch them take off. Vines aren’t super picky about being cared for, and they love to climb trellises, walls, and more.
7. Folding Screens
The amazing thing about folding screens is that they come in thousands of styles, colors, and variations. You won’t be without something to match your decor. And, if you’re wanting to open your patio or balcony back up, you can easily do that by just folding the screen away. Pretty simple and easy.