Nowadays, it’s all about going green and incorporating sustainable living into your everyday life. Hop on the trend, help preserve the environment, and get a stylish outdoor living space by creating your eco-friendly patio.
What is an Eco Friendly Patio?
Let’s start with the basics–what does it even mean to be eco-friendly? Anything that isn’t harmful to the environment is considered eco-friendly. Eco-friendly patios use sustainable materials, renewable energy, and, typically, lots of nature.
Many advantages come with having an eco-friendly patio. Low maintenance, energy and water preservation, health improvement, long-term cost reduction, and environmental improvements are all amazing benefits; however, there are some disadvantages to taking the eco-friendly route.
Although going eco-friendly can save you money in the long run, it costs money to save money. Installing equipment such as solar panels will eventually reduce your electricity bill, but the average start-up cost is $9,000. Also, it’s more time-consuming to incorporate environmentally-safe equipment into your patio. However, in the long run, it’s worthy to invest.
Where to Start?
Start building your green patio by coming up with a design plan. This plan will help you go about creating your eco-friendly patio step by step. It also makes sure your vision for your patio and the yard landscape align to get you to your goal.
The first thing you should do when making your design plan is to create a list of “must-haves” and “wants”. Your “must-haves” list will be things you will not compromise on including in your green patio. Your “wants” list are things that you want in your patio space but are willing to give up if need be.
Coming up with these lists will help you determine whether you need to hire landscaping professionals to set up utilities or run pipelines and electricity through your yard. The overall design plan lays out exactly what will be included within your green patio so you can tackle it one aspect at a time.
Environmentally Friendly Patio Inspirations
Maybe coming up with a design plan is challenging for you because you don’t have any ideas; however, here are a few ideas to spark enough inspiration to get you started.
Imagine walking into your patio where there’s a stone walkway connecting your fire pit area, with stainless steel seating decorated with green cushions and all-natural textiles, and your in-ground pond, surrounded by native flowers and lots of greenery. There’s a large oak tree providing lots of shade right off of the main patio area, but it still allows for a clear view of the entire space.
If you could also imagine, for a second, a more modern, contemporary eco-friendly yard. Walking out of your house to a stone-ground topped with a wicker sofa set with matching chairs decorated with green cushions and brown, sustainable pillows sounds like a dream. Now imagine this space is surrounded by a large wooden fence lined with all sorts of greenery all while under a large dark-wood pergola with hanging vines.
The eco-friendly lights surrounding this space give it a warm, earthy feel and set the tone at nighttime.
Arrebol 7-Piece Grass Green Wicker U Shape Sectional Sofa Set
Some other things to consider adding to your green patio include a wooden pergola for some all-natural shade, a pond for a truly earthy aura, and even trees to make the space seem larger because if it can fit a tree, what can’t it fit? I also recommend not just adding solar-powered lights, but actual solar panels.
Incorporating solar panels within your eco-friendly patio not only benefits your patio space but your entire home. As I said, they are a bit pricey to set up, but they save you lots of money in the long run. They can power your entire patio which is the ultimate eco-friendly feature you can add to your patio.
Six Eco Friendly Patio Ideas
Obviously, you’re here because you want to build an eco-friendly patio, but it can hard trying to figure out where to start. These tips should help you get started and keep you on the right track while constructing your eco-friendly patio.
Choose Sustainable Materials
Sustainable products are products created from recycled materials that do not harm the environment throughout their life cycle–which is until they are recycled into something else. Sustainable materials suitable for your patio could be things such as artificial grass, stainless steel, aluminum, reclaimed or FSC-certified wood, or anything made from recycled materials.
Select Eco Friendly Patio Furniture
Let’s face it, your patio isn’t truly “eco-friendly” if everything in it isn’t, including furniture. The good thing is that nowadays, companies are making more of an effort to produce furniture that built to last.
Teak and eucalyptus are common eco-friendly patio furniture options due to their durability, strength, and aesthetic appeal. However, furniture made of stainless steel, aluminum, and synthetic wicker is considered eco-friendly as well. Keep in mind that not all synthetic wicker is eco-friendly; however, this L-shaped sofa set is a great option for your environmentally-safe outdoor living space.
This sofa set can be disconnected and rearranged to match your space, has high-density foam cushions, and even comes with an eco-friendly fire pit. You can also refurbish thrifted furniture to give it a new purpose if the sofa set doesn’t suit you. Repurposing existing furniture helps the environment by preventing new furniture from being made just to sit in it.
Invite Nature to Be Your Decorations
Using nature to decorate your outdoor living space embodies the idea of being “eco-friendly”. By using natural resources to decorate, you limit the amount of non-biodegradable products being produced in the environment.
Choose plants that match your color palette, incorporate a stone or dirt walkway throughout your patio space, and even add a small pond within your eco-friendly patio to emphasize the connection with nature.
When planting flowers in your eco-friendly patio, it’s best to use plants native to your area. By decorating using local plants, you cut down on your water usage since they thrive in their native environment. You also reduce the amount of unnatural gas being released into the air caused by foreign plant transportation.
You could also spruce up your eco-friendly patio by starting a garden. It adds color, saves you money, and saves the environment by reducing the number of people buying fruits and vegetables grown using pesticides and unnatural fertilizers. Synthetic grass is also a great “green” option to add to your eco-friendly patio. The fact that it’s synthetic reduces your water usage throughout the year, and it keeps your yard looking perfect all year long!
Making Nature A Part of Your Patio
Choose Clean-Energy Powering or Energy-Saving Lighting
When it comes to choosing eco-friendly lighting for your patio, it’s very easy. Just choose LED or solar-powered lights. These types of lights don’t emit any gases into the atmosphere which is saving the environment.
The benefits of LED lighting are that they use less electricity than conventional light bulbs, and they have a longer lifespan. LED lights are your best option when it comes to lighting large areas or places where the sun doesn’t shine.
Solar-powered lights are also a great option for your patio because they are completely eco-friendly. They don’t use any electricity which is great for your electric bill, and they can be used as long as they get enough sunlight. They provide your patio with a warm, soft, and homey feel. The only downside is that the light they emit is inconsistent and doesn’t last late into the night or early morning.
Collect Rain Water With Barrels
Collecting rainwater using barrels is a great way to cut down your water consumption and water bill by reducing the amount of tap water you use. You can repurpose this collected water and use it to water the plants within your eco-friendly patio. Incorporating a barrel into your patio space also adds a touch of rustic style to your outdoor living area.
Upcycle the Waste Products
There are many different ways you can go about upcycling within your eco-friendly patio. I recommend adding different compost bins to reduce the amount of waste you’re releasing back into the environment. Also, by adding a compost pile, you reduce your food waste and create nutrient-rich soil for your growing plants and vegetables.
Upcycling Patio Idea
Building a patio can add a lot of style and personality to your home. By making it eco-friendly you’re not only helping the environment, but you’re putting your values into your home. You now have all the information you need to go about creating your green patio. Good luck with building the eco-friendly patio of your dreams!