Garden Shades 1: Sketches

As a response to recent water restrictions, we decided to install shades for our garden. These articles show the process I followed from initial studies to finished shades.

Plants are mostly bromeliads and tillandsias (air plants). Our garden is well established, with little room available for installing poles in the ground or attaching  shades to the house.

These are sketches of different concepts, developed as I talked to different manufacturers, researched materials and explored options.

Garden Shades 2: Final Design

This is the final design.

We decided that it was too intrusive to have anyone install them-too many plants and not enough room-so I built and installed them myself. We selected a coated pvc mesh that is 50% open for filtered sunlight. Shades are royal blue-the major accent color in the garden. Supports are steel tube with stainless steel marine cable and hardware.

They are designed like kites, light members braced by thin strings.

The tall structure is a 2 story deck that we built about 10 years ago, but that’s another story.