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Mediterranean Style Terrace in Your Own Back Yard

By: Mary Williams BA (hons) - Updated: 19 Jul 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Mediterranean Style Terrace Design Yard

With the increasingly warmer weather but fewer people taking foreign holidays, a Mediterranean-style terrace can be a fantastic option for anyone looking for something a little different for their own back yard. With steps that can be taken as far as you want to, you can quite easily bring a Mediterranean air to your outdoor area, creating that perfect space to enjoy a cold drink on a balmy evening.

Assess Your Space

Whether you have a tiny terrace or an enormous sun deck, you can still bring in a Mediterranean style – but the key is not to overdo it. Cramming a small area with plants, furniture and other accessories will end up looking over the top. A few carefully chosen pieces will make all the difference. If you are starting from scratch and creating a new terrace, you can have real fun and can take the design further. But do also remember that less is more and keep it simple yet stylish.

Flooring First

If you do have the option of starting afresh with flooring or perhaps laying something new then take the opportunity. Large, light flagstones, perhaps in a limestone, will bring that scorching classical Greek style right into your garden while a rough terracotta tile could add a touch of the South of France. Go for a bleached decking to catch a sun-soaked coastal style or imagine yourself in Spain with an elegant porcelain tile, perhaps in a burnt orange shade.

Creating an Edging

The edging to your terrace must be subtle and needs to blend seamlessly with your flooring. You could possibly pull off a classical Greek or Italianate balustrade look if you then go on to keep plants and furniture minimal. Otherwise, how about opting for something simple in wrought iron or a low level wall, in a brick that ties in with your tiling? This could then be adorned by a few plants. Keep your brickwork exposed or paint it in a fresh white if you are going for a French or Italian-influenced style. If your Mediterranean look is leaning towards the Spanish or Portuguese, however, you could go for a sandier shade.

Planting for Your Terrace

Create a pergola or hanging plant effect by building yourself a simple frame in rough stripped timber. Use trellis to the sides if you wish and then train a vine, passion flower or other climbing plant up the sides and above. Choose something that will give you shade but that will also produce either brightly coloured Mediterranean flowers or even a fruit. Enhance your planting by bringing in a few containers. If you are going for flowers with vivid colours, keep your pots simple in a plain terracotta or stone. If you plan to go for greenery only, then you could choose containers in hand-painted, bright Mediterranean colours.

Bringing in Colour

Before you buy your plants, check your conditions carefully – light, heat and wind levels must be accounted for as some Mediterranean plants will be temperamental. Take a lead from the structural design of your terrace and your brick work. If you have gone for a classical style, planters with neat bay trees could bring elegance or for something more rustic try an olive or pistachio plant. For something with that coastal, almost tropical feel, try some palms, bamboo or aloe vera. Around the edges of your terrace explore the possibility of planting out mimosa, magnolia or a selection or grasses.

Finishing Touches

Complete your look by bringing in some garden furniture. Again, follow the style you have set here yourself. If your Mediterranean look is rural, bring some additional character in through a rough looking stripped wood table with benches. A touch of Province can be added, however, though a lime washed table, which has perhaps been distressed. Or go for that slightly more chic, Nice or Monte Carlo style with elegant wrought iron.

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