New England Outdoor Blog

4 Ways to Add Shade to Your Backyard

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The heat and humidity can get pretty unbearable during the summer months, making it harder to host guests for outdoor parties. If you’ve been considering different ways that you can add some massive shade to your yard without relying on a measly little patio umbrella, then you are in luck! In this post, we’re sharing four different structures that you can add to your yard to protect yourself from harmful ultraviolet rays and the harsh summer heat.


 1) Pergola


 Although these structures offer partial shade, they can be dressed up with vines, outdoor ornaments, lanterns and other decorative fixtures. You can even achieve full shade with a pergola by covering it with awning fabric that can be removed on hot or rainy days. Because they are constructed out of wood, pergolas naturally blend in with your home’s deck. Need ideas? This list contains 21 different pergola styles that will help guide you.


2) Retractable canopy


If you don’t mind having a structure mounted to your home, then a retractable canopy is an option you should consider. This structure is the most versatile because it uses fabric slides that run on tracks and can be easily opened and closed in sections. This option is typically best if you are redesigning your entire deck, as it may be hard to insert support posts into your current deck design — especially if it is several years old. Check out these retractable canopy designs for inspiration.


3) Shade sails


You will need professional assistance for these structures, as shade sails require two poles to be erected in concrete bases in your yard before the sails (or large fabric material) are attached to them. However, these are useful structures that provide aesthetic appeal. If your goal is to block out UV rays, then you will want to purchase shades with darker colors. Also, remember that shade sails cannot be left up year-round, and require light maintenance. Find out more information about what shade sails can do for you here.


4) Portable canopy


These structures are especially helpful for when you want to set up a table away from your deck or have a gathering in the middle of your yard. These items only take a few seconds to set up and can be moved easily, as they are typically lightweight and less expensive. You can also have the option to purchase a portable shade canopy that comes with screens or netting to keep bugs and pests away from your guests.


pergola for sale, request a brochure


Don’t let the summer heat hamper your summer fun! Try any of these ideas for a breezy summer retreat, right in your own backyard.


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