If you feel like your back patio or porch is nice but could stand to be nicer, don’t worry. With a few simple changes and additions, you can turn a merely okay location into an extraordinary one. Make your remote backyard getaway extra special, private, and comfortable with these tips for making your patio cozier.

Bring in the Green

More likely than not, your backyard is already green with grass, bushes, and various flora, but is your patio looking bare? There’s no better way to make a patio blend with the rest of the greenery than through potted and hanging plants, trellises for vines, and racks that provide a pleasant and beautiful display along with some natural-looking cover for privacy. Consider cultivating trees or bushes around the edge of the patio, or place fast-growing potted trees and bushes with spreading branches at strategic points. Nothing makes you feel like you’re far away more than walls and canopies of green.

Pick the Right Furniture

This one seems easy enough, but take your time picking furniture because you’ll live with the decision for many years. First, splurge a little. Plastic furniture is cheap and lasts for quite a while, but it also tends to lose its color faster in the sunlight and is prone to chipping and cracking over time, making it look cheap as well. Pick better-grade wood or metal furniture but choose a kind that’s easy to care for with basic maintenance. Try to test the furniture before you buy it, getting a feel for comfort and relaxation. Also, keep size in mind and don’t let too-large furniture dominate your patio, making it feel cramped.

Light Up Your Life

Lighting can make all the difference in giving a patio a homey and cozy feeling. During the day, an adjustable umbrella, wooden pergola, or fabric canopy can keep things light and bright while protecting you from the sun’s rays. At night, add a soft glow to the surroundings with light strings, hanging lanterns, and tabletop candles. If you have the means and can do it safely, add a firepit to the center of the patio, providing warmth and offering room for guests to rest their drinks or put up their feet.

Make It an Extension of Your Home

Here’s one of the best tips for making your patio cozier. Don’t think of your patio as a platform, think of it as a multi-purpose room, but with extra fresh air and sunshine! Measure the space and leave room for various activities, partitioning off sections for different uses. Your patio can have a special place for eating alfresco, like the dining room. There can be a place to read, think, and even snooze, like the bedroom. A conversation pit can serve the purpose of a living room or rec room, and with a coffee table or similar surface it can be a game room as well. Let your imagination help you plot the perfect patio, porch, or nook!