3 ways to beat the heat in your backyard

10 August, 2015

Summer isn't over yet – There's still plenty of time for backyard barbecues and pool parties. While the season's warm weather opens the door for tons of fun outdoor activities, that doesn't mean you need to embrace every aspect of it. After all, that afternoon sun can get pretty hot, and being constantly exposed to ultraviolet rays can be uncomfortable and harmful to your skin. Be sure to furnish your backyard with the right shading equipment so the heat doesn't stop you from enjoying these last few weeks of summer.

Patio umbrellas
Umbrellas designed to beat the heat come in all sizes, colors and styles, meaning you can effortlessly find one to fit the look of your backyard. If you're searching for a shady setting while you eat dinner, opt for an umbrella that slides right into the center of your outdoor dining sets. For more versatile coverage, go with a patio umbrella, which uses a weighted base to secure the umbrella on the ground. The larger canopy of this style umbrella provides a wide area of shade, perfect for poolside lounging or just comfortably enjoying your backyard.

Pergola
The structured archway of a pergola doesn't provide a lot of shade on its own (the space between the beams lets in a lot of sunlight), but you can easily dress it up to provide shelter over your backyard patio in style. For example, create a romantic, Italian vineyard look in your backyard by covering your pergola with ivy, such as the Virginia creeper. Add a starry-night touch with twinkling string lights. Or, set up an intimate, island escape by weaving white curtains through the archway. When you want to let in more sun, simply bunch the curtains together with seaside-esque rope.

Canopy
If you're planning on inviting a few friends over in your backyard or having a full-blown barbecue extravaganza, a canopy may be your solution for keeping everyone protected from the sun. Supported by stilts with a canopy overlay, this shade tool can be propped up right on your patio over some of your furniture. Not only does this method provide shelter over a commonly used area, but it also creates a more intimate setting. Or, if you're hosting a party, you may benefit from setting up a larger canopy in your backyard over the dining furniture and food. This way, guests will stay comfortable and cool while they eat dinner.

Don't let the summer heat stop you from enjoying your beautiful backyard. Use these shade tools to keep the party going all day long.