If you’re building or rebuilding your patio structure, consider your trees – both old and new. There are excellent solutions out there, and designing a patio structure for its surrounding landscape can truly unite your plan. Here are a few ways to consider integrating your trees with your patio.

Consider Keeping Old Trees

Old trees don’t always need to be taken out if they’re near a planned patio structure. Plenty of new structures either avoid a tree trunk, by cutting boards to fit around a trunk – or patio structures can completely integrate and envelop an old tree’s trunk. Some innovative patio designs encircle preexisting trees in a landscape, and its not too hard to make a few cuts in your patio boards to achieve this style.

Plant Trees Where They’ll Provide Shade

Consider the function of your trees around your patio. Plant trees with big canopies to gain some permanent summer shade. Or plant bushy or leafy trees to protect your patio from wind.

Feeling Bold? Plant a Tree in the Middle of Your Patio Structure

Again, you can design your patio around a tree or two. Simply leave enough space in your patio for a full grown trunk to thrive in. You can always widen a hole for a tree, or cut a new hole in with a circular saw! That way you can retrofit your current patio with a tree in the middle!

Use Trees and Bushes as a Fence

Trees and bushes provide great privacy and wind protection. Consider planting trees and bushes alongside your patio wherever prevailing winds flow in. This’ll allow you to stay outside even when the winds pick up!

Remember Fall Will Come

If you’re not a fan of sweeping leaves off your porch or patio, plant trees accordingly! Its a no brainer really, just plant leafy trees farther away from your patio. Consider planting evergreens instead, as they only drop the occasional pinecone!

Remember Your Roots

Never plant new trees near the foundation of a home or building. Roots are hardy and stubborn, and overtime they’ll work their way into your foundation – causing cracks, and possibly ruining the integrity of your building structure. The same goes for patios and porches. Consider where your roots might end up, and plan ahead. Don’t plant trees near cement patios, as you might get a rogue root in a number of years. And avoid trees that sprout “suckers” or seedlings. Suckers pop out of the trunk of trees, and they can poke through wood porches, or eventually bend boards if they get out of hand. Trees that sprout seedlings can also be a nuisance. You’ll need to make sure that seedlings aren’t trying to poke through the boards of your patio.

Mind Those Branches

Similarly, you’ll need to consider where your trees branches may grow. You wouldn’t plant a tree that might have a low hanging branch near your home, so avoid the same on your patio! Low hanging branches can block parts of your patio; and as branches fail on old, dying trees, they can damage your structures. Mind your branches, and cut any branches that could end up hazardous.