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Spanish Patio Ideas

Updated February 21, 2017

The patios of Spain are characterised by bright flowers spilling from wall pots, brilliant flowering vines, colourful curtains hanging from iron rods to provide shade from the intense sun, mosaic tile, and water features to bring a cool aspect to the space. Add just a few of these touches to your patio and you can achieve a little Spanish flair of your own.

Plants

A striking characteristic of Spanish outdoor spaces is the abundance of colourful flowering plants. Plant geraniums and petunias in terracotta pots and hang them from your patio walls. Train a climbing plant such as bougainvillea, Carolina jasmine, orange trumpet vine, cardinal climber vine, or black-eyed Susan vine. All of these choices provide the signature reds, oranges, pinks and yellows of lush Spanish courtyards. Plant jasmine and orange blossom for a scent of Spain. Palm trees and shrubs will give your patio a definitive Spanish feel. Plant a small olive tree in a large blue urn if your lighting is right.

Basic Architecture

Cobblestone patio foundations, walls, and steps are characteristic of Spanish outdoor spaces. Stucco walls bring a taste of the Mediterranean to your backyard. Although it may not be possible to redo your entire outdoor space, repaint any wooden structures using the colour blue in a strong hue on shutters or doors. Have Mexican tile installed on portions of the wall. With its strong colours and geometric patterns, this tile gives a Hispanic flair to any space.

Architectural Accents

Spanish homeowners build "rejas" (elaborate wrought-iron grills) in their outdoor spaces to deter intruders and for their aesthetic value. Hang wrought-iron planters and light fixtures to bring a look of Spain to your patio. Hang stone mosaics on your patio walls or purchase a tiled table. Fountains with carvings of cherubs are also characteristic of the Spanish outdoors and can be purchased at outdoor furniture or garden stores in many locations.

Textiles

Fabrics in zesty reds, oranges, and yellows will spice up your patio and again recall the colours of Span. Try a red umbrella or orange, red, and yellow pillows on your benches and chairs. For a little respite from the sun, install a swinging curtain rod or two with tab-top raw cotton curtains that you can draw for shade. These, too, can be bought at local indoor/outdoor furnishing stores, garden stores, and hardware stores.

Water Features

The Spanish like to bring the cooling element of water to their patios and courtyards. Cherub fountains are popular choices. Arrange to install a spill fountain urn sitting on a stone basin on or near your patio. Something as simple as a large blue urn with a small spray fountain adds the sound and feel of water to your outdoor space. Buy two or three goldfish or small koi to add another touch of orange and yellow to your water space. A wall fountain with a terracotta spout in the shape of the sun or a lion is another way to add Spanish flair to your environment. You may need an interior designer or a garden specialist to help find and mount these features.

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About the Author

Based in eastern Virginia, Cathy Welch began writing nonfiction articles and novels in 1996. She wrote a short story that appears in John Maxwell’s “Everyone Communicates, Few Connect.” She writes reviews and nonfiction for Longridge Writer’s Group. Welch holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Christopher Newport University with a concentration in management.