You probably won't be able to enjoy your outdoor patio if you feel like you're always under the watchful eye of nosy neighbours, or if you can hear every word of a neighbour's conversation while you're outside. Adding some privacy to your patio can make it more enjoyable and more relaxing, and also allows you to bring some extra style to the space at the same time. Note a few quick tips on how to add both privacy and style to your outdoor seating area.
If your patio has a pergola or other framed structure around it, consider using hanging pots to create a type of privacy wall. Opt for oversized pots that you can hang at different heights, so that they obscure the view without making the space seem busy and cluttered. You can even hang long troughs to use for planting your favourite herbs, which can add a nice aroma to the patio area and which you can also use for cooking!
You may think of using hedges just around the borders of your yard, but these can also be a good choice for creating privacy around the patio. Choose boxwood, privet, or yew hedges for something you can trim into a very nice manicured, square shape. For a bit of colour, try purple beech or red robin, both of which have dark, wine-coloured leaves that can still be trimmed as needed.
A stand-alone water feature can block both the prying eyes of your neighbours, and the sound of their conversations as well! Look for an outdoor fountain that is tall, like a privacy screen, and which plugs in to keep the water running. This is a great visual and sound feature on your patio, offering you something to look at while outside, while also creating a bit of background noise that easily obscures the sound coming from a neighbouring yard.
A privacy screen can also block the view of a neighbour and any sound from their yard as well. You have many options for privacy screens, including actual fabric that is attached to a frame, a lattice wall, or louvers. Consider the flexibility you might want with a privacy screen; a lattice wall allows you to hang plants on the inside of the screen for added greenery, but louvers can be opened and closed as needed. This gives you maximum control over the light and fresh air you get into your patio space, and can also keep the area from looking walled-in and a bit claustrophobic.