12 Must-Haves for your Patio, Designer Vetted & Gardener Tested

Time Several Hours

Budget $ $$$

Skill Level

WORDS BY Heather Goerzen

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Published on June 21, 2021

Summer is officially in full bloom (pun absolutely intended) and we couldn’t be more thrilled. As the weather gets warmer and the days stretch longer, we’re continuing to perfect our patios to maximize every ounce of much-needed outdoor time we can get — glass of rose in hand. We’ve found our inspiration for a patio paradise, styled it to the nines, and now, are ready to infuse even more life and color with plants and florals. You with us? 

But first, as they say, we all need a little help from our friends, and luckily we were able to tap our besties at Bloomscape for their gardening expertise. We pow wowed and pulled together our collective favorites to transform your patio into an outdoor oasis. Whether you’re a bonafide green thumb or new to plant parenting, you can consider these recommendations both designer vetted and gardener tested (a win-win in our books).

best outdoor plants

1. Dahlias // 2. Impatiens, Persian Shields, and Helichrysums // 3. Calibrachoas & Bidens // 4. Begonias // 5. Geraniums

Best Plants for Soaking in the Sun

Does your patio live by the mantra of ‘fun in the sun’ all day? Have no fear. We’ve handpicked our fave outdoor flowers that thrive in hot spots — no SPF needed. The beauty of these plants is that they are truly beautiful, but also, unapologetically hardy as hell. They’ll add a lushness to your space all while withstanding the heat (TX, we’re looking at you…).


As designers, we’re all for a vibrant color scheme and weaving texture throughout a space, so these cheery dahlias ranked at the top of our patio hitlist. A tip from the pros at Bloomscape to keep them at their finest, longest: “Remove fading flowers with clean, sharp snips to encourage the plant to bloom on into autumn.” (PS: we have a product rec for that, so read on.)


It’s no secret that we’re Francophiles over here at Havenly (a country that loves bread and cheese and wine, and chic fashion, warrants all the admiration). So we’ve long had a sweet spot for classic red geraniums to give your patio that Parisian-inspired vibe. Bloomscape weighs in with this bonus tidbit: “They’re extremely easy to care for and can even transition indoors over winter when placed near a sunny window.” And don’t forget to gently twist off old flower stalks to help these babies produce even more blooms.

Calibrachoas & Bidens

But why settle for just one floral when you can have them all? This heat-loving trifecta will add even more color and pizzazz to your outdoor spaces. It’s the variety of texture and playful palette that we love so much. Again, Bloomscape encourages us that this floral head-turner is as low maintenance as it gets.

Best Plants for those Shady Spots

On the other hand, if your patio (or porch, or balcony stoop) gets a fair amount of shade, you’ll want to listen up for our plant picks that require a respite from the sun. These lovely florals are akin to those of us who prefer enjoying our beach reads beneath the cabana — in a floppy straw hat — and a stylish cover up. 


We love how these Begonias look like graceful golden butterflies, with leaves that add a bit of a sheen to your space. Bloomscape confirms that while they can tolerate a few hours of morning sun, they then like to lounge in the shade. And more gardening goodness: “Their succulent stems mean they are forgiving of a missed watering here and there, and they are happy to live indoors over the winter.”

Impatiens, Persian Shields, and Helichrysums (oh my!)

You’ve heard this from us before, but good design is all about creating contrast, which is why we’re all about this floral combo that feels both delicate and a little wild. According to Bloomscape, this low-care trio shines in the shade and will add color and beauty all summer long.

best planters and gardening tools for outdoor patio

1. Hanging Pot // 2. Tabletop planter // 3. Watering Can // 4. Plant Snips // 5. Square Planter // 6. Round Planter // 7. Soil Scoop


Best Planters & Tools for Your Outdoor Patio

All right, now that you’ve fallen in love with your floral-of-choice, you need a planter to show it off. For us, every planter must accomplish two things: look good (duh), and function well. That’s one reason we’re so into these Bloomscape finds. They feature a minimalist design crafted from sustainable materials and include a drainage hole, “which is a must-have for plant success,” our gardening friends reiterate.

For a more boho-inspired aesthetic, consider this charcoal hanging pot, and allow your plant to fall wild and free over the edges. When it comes to potted planters, we’re fans of sticking to a monochromatic palette and adding in that contrast (see, there it is again) through diverse sizes and shapes – like this larger rounded pot alongside a shorter square edition.

And of course, we wouldn’t want to leave your table out. This simple and low tabletop pot adds just the right amount of greenery to your feasts, while still leaving room for the charcuterie board (and your wine glasses, of course).

Last (but certainly not least), let’s keep those beautiful plants looking as good as the day you brought them home with a little gardening TLC (aka: the right tools). What kind of green thumb would you be without your trusted watering can? Our design experts chose this one because not only is it large enough to keep all your plant babies hydrated (because who has time for faucet trips anyways?), it also doubles as functional decor. 

And as Bloomscape reminds us… Don’t forget your plant snips, a prereq for cutting back those dead stems to keep your plant blooming longer, as well as this pretty soil scoop for potting purposes (particularly useful for preserving manicured nails).

Does this get you feeling inspired to finally take on that patio project? Our designers are standing by to help you create your very own outdoor sanctuary, beginning with our style quiz.

boho patio complete with outdoor plants and planters

Words by Heather Goerzen