The Best Plants To Use To Create A Private Patio Space

Whether you've got a strict HOA, you don't have a fence, or you live uphill from your neighbors, it's natural to seek ways to add a bit more privacy to your patio space. What better way to add a sense of luxury and privacy to your patio than to use thriving, beautiful plants? Some of the best plants to use to create a private patio space include elephant ear (Colocasia, Alocasia, and Xanthosoma), bougainvillea (Bougainvillea glabra and spectabilis), and California lilac (Ceanothus x pallidus). You can make your plant selection or choose a combination of the three depending on the size of your space, your climate, and whether you prefer potted or in-ground plants.

These three plant types make ideal privacy plants because of their size, their lush leaves, and their ability to spread. You also want something that's nice to look at! All three of these privacy plants are beautiful in their own way, whether they flaunt colorful flowers or impressive, shiny leaves. Selecting plants that offer ease and convenience in your area is also important. For example, you'll likely want to avoid tropical species like elephant ear if your usual weather is chilly and dry.

For warm climates or pots: bougainvillea and elephant ear can really enhance a patio

If you live in a warm climate and you'd like a showy plant that will spread across your space, bougainvillea has everything you need. Bougainvillea is only hardy in USDA agricultural zones 9a, 10a, and 10b, meaning it needs plenty of heat! Plant this vibrant vine in full sun and well-drained soil, and provide trellises to direct the leaves. If you have a wire fence or another structure that doesn't provide enough privacy, bougainvillea is a great source of foliage.

For a sleeker look, the expansive leaves of elephant ear make a perfect privacy screen. These plants are only hardy in tropical climates where temperatures don't drop below 60 degrees, but once you've learned how to successfully care for elephant ear plants, they'll be the ideal addition to your outdoor oasis since their leaves can grow to three feet long and two feet wide. They need rich, moist soil and most varieties prefer full sun.

Live in a cooler climate but still want elephant ear or bougainvillea to complete your outdoor oasis? The good news is, both of these plants thrive in containers. You can grow bougainvillea in pots and move them inside for the winter for a more hedge-shaped screen, or if you have just a few gaps to fill to add privacy to your patio, you could add hanging pots of bougainvillea. Elephant ear is a common household potted plant that you could move outside in the summertime.

For an in-ground hedge shrub, try California lilac

In some climates, it's hard to justify the effort of keeping a tropical plant outside, even if only for part of the year. Whether you want a lower-maintenance plant in a cool climate or you simply want to enjoy the sweet scent of lilac while lounging on your patio, these shrubs do an excellent job of filling a space and providing both beauty and privacy. They attract pollinators including butterflies and multiple specialized bee species, making them particularly valuable to your local ecosystem.

You can plant California lilac in full sun or partial shade. If you live in USDA zones three through eight, you won't even need to worry about protecting your beautiful lilac tree in the winter since they're hardy to the cold, even bouncing back after facing sub-zero temperatures! They are drought tolerant, making them a nice option for drier climates where you don't want to spend resources watering every day. This is a low-maintenance hedge that might just need the occasional shaping and trimming to keep it ideally shaped for your patio space.