Made in the Shade

Filed under Misc, Outdoor Living by Lauren Cook on .

With temperatures over 100 degrees in Southern Illinois, it's head for the shade or bake in the sun. Are you looking for ways to add shade to your outdoor living space? You can make your patio area a more enjoyable place to be this summer by adding a bit of cool shade.


 According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, “the net cooling effect of a young, healthy tree is equivalent to 10 room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours a day.” What a big difference one tree can make! So what are some fast-growing shade trees that work well in our area? Try planting a Red Maple, Pin Oak, Weeping Willow or Tulip Poplar. Late fall and early spring are the best times of the year to plant large trees.



For more immediate results, a shade structure, such as an arbor or gazebo, can be added to an existing patio. Arbors can be custom-made or built from a kit. These kits are available in a wide range of styles and materials, so that your new arbor will match your home and the surrounding space. Custom structures are only limited to your imagination.




 Growing in popularity around the United States is a product made by Shade Sails, LLC. The sails are made out of a tensioned fabric held up by posts installed in the ground. They are a fun, attractive way to shade your patio or pool area.




Retractable awnings are another option for those wanting to shade a hot patio. (





Sometimes a few umbrellas is all you need to cool down.