This raised bed garden plan shows how raised beds can be used to create privacy and shelter for a patio dining area.
The raised beds illustrated are simple rectangles constructed out of wood but could equally well be built from stone that complements the paving and the house.
The height of the different elements can be adjusted to suit your needs with, say, higher beds along the sides for added privacy and shelter, and lower ones to the front of the patio to allow a view into the rest of the garden.
The beds are shown planted mainly with low maintenance evergreens and architectural plants that will provide structure and interest throughout the year but you can easily add seasonal planting to bring a dash of colour and fragrance to the display.
If you enjoy cooking on a barbeque it is really easy to grow some aromatic herbs that can be tossed on to the grill to flavour your food as it is cooking.
If you need more privacy or shelter, consider attaching trellis to the raised beds and growing some climbers to provide screening and a strong vertical element to the design.
Another possibility is to frame the steps with a trellis archway to create a sense of different garden 'rooms'.
A final tip based on experience: if you are intending to use a built-in barbeque you will have to ensure that it is positioned sufficiently far away from your plants to prevent scorching (or worse!).
You can find links to more information and sample plans for the ornamental garden at raised bed garden plans.
If you are interested in growing vegetables you will find information and links to sample plans for the vegetable garden at planning a raised bed vegetable garden.
Successful raised bed garden design offers useful design tips and information.
An overview of the subject can be found at raised bed gardening.
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