Patio After

I’m so excited to show you our patio today!

Here’s what you will NOT find on our patio:

I’ve seen an overwhelming amount of cute patios and cute ideas for patios on Pinterest and blogs this year. And I’m sure I’m just hyper-sensitive, since for once I actually have a patio for comparison. But like, stop taunting me!

I decided not to try to compete, and instead see what I could forage for free from friends and family (turns out, a patio table set and a fountain, yay!). Or from my recently vacated neighbor’s adjacent patio (hint: all my pots and a watering can). Given that I have never gardened before, I figured I had my work cut out for me just keeping the plants alive, let alone accessorizing them.

If you haven’t seen the before picture, here it is (mind you, taken a full year ago, before winter storms). And, after a solid weekend of hard work, here’s the after!

Torie and Tristan Patio (9)

Torie and Tristan Patio (5)

Torie and Tristan Patio (7)

Here’s a closer look at some of the plants (primarily impatiens), which are barely visible at this point.

Torie and Tristan Patio (1)

I found this metal sun on my ex-neighbor’s patio. I plan to spray paint it yellow to match my patio furniture. And because I love being literal.

Torie and Tristan Patio (2)

And, as you’ve previously read about, my beloved herb garden:

Torie and Tristan Patio (11)

Looking toward the other side of the patio…

I am still interested in purchasing a reclining outdoor chair, which would go in front of the BBQ (facing away), and Craigslist frequently has these for around $20. Whenever I do get the chair, I have a side table on stand by that can hold my magazine and drink.

Torie and Tristan Patio (12)

To the left, those spikey leaves are dracaena and the taller pot is filled with sweet potato ivy, coleus and something else, I can’t remember. Apparently these plants will be quite large by August. All I know now is that I have to water them every other day and fertilize every two weeks. And slug bait, always. Thanks, mom!

Torie and Tristan Patio (14)

Torie and Tristan Patio (15)

Including plants, soil and the one non-negotiable accessory (market lights, as if you had to ask), I think we spent around $80. The market lights were from Target and on sale for buy one set, get one half off – totaling $20. I spent about $40 on flowers and $20 on soil (organic, for the herbs) and slug bait. My mom hooked me up with some fertilizer. If I had to purchase my own pots, the cost would have drastically increased, so I recommend checking with family, friends and Craigslist if you’re not picky about matching.

Is my patio everything I could’ve hoped and dreamed of? Not quite. But I love that I was resourceful with materials available to me, got my hands dirty, and took a chance on growing sh!t. It’s an ambient place to eat dinner with Tristan, visit with friends, and cran my neck to see the water.




  1. Oh my gosh Tor! It’s so cute! I love it. I’m jealous of your string lights, too – I dream of having a patio with those. It all just looks so cheery! Good job.

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