Stone Patios for Outdoor Parties

18 Mar

The weather in Greensboro, NC is conductive to spending many days outside in our gardens and patios. Stone patios in close proximity to your home can provide an area for contained fires, grilling, bird watching, relaxation or just a beautiful area to view from the kitchen window.

The before picture of a very sad landscape was neglected and did not serve a function.  This area was directly outside of the screened in porch, a perfect place to extend your living area. The existing plant material has over stayed its welcome and on the way to the dump.


The homeowner purchased an outdoor wrought iron table and chairs for their new stone patio. After looking at the furniture and other pieces around the property, I had a feeling of Charleston, SC.  


Taking all of his concerns and ideas, I went back to the office to draw a sketch of the new outdoor stone patio. I am not sure they envisioned plants and low-level lighting, but I did. Plants and outdoor lighting are the finishing touches. Plants function to soften the stone and lighting provides an illuminated space to be enjoyed after hours.

The stone chosen was Tennessee Crab Orchard, one of my favorites for its rich colors of beige, pink and mauve. 2 seating walls were created from brick similar to that of the house. The height of these walls are perfect to provide additional seating on the patio. Landscape stone may be cut in different ways. The capstone on the brick wall is actually the same as the patio, Tennessee Crab Orchard. Just cut into blocks.


We installed 2 wrought iron window boxes above the window. It would not have made the impact I was looking for. Charleston, SC is known for its cascading Spanish moss and outdoor containers filled with vibrant annuals and palms. Watering the window box was quite the challenge, so top dollar artificial flowers do the trick. I do not recommend installing fake flowers in pots at ground level.


The stone patio does not attach to the brick wall at every point. Notice there are plant pockets to add some greenery to soften the wall and the patio. Camellias and annuals were planted in these areas. The Tennessee Crab Orchard stone was dry laid and crevice or creeping plants were installed between the stones.


Aren’t they a lovely couple. They just tied the knot in Hawaii last November. So have yourself a party in this great NC weather.

Happy Planting!

Diana Garner-Williams

Landscape Design and Installation


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5 responses to “Stone Patios for Outdoor Parties

  1. Maxine Schoggen

    June 8, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    Lovely stone. We have a patio of crab orchard stone; it has been there at least 25 or 30 years. It was there when we moved in about 15 years ago and is is open, unprotected from all the creatures aroun. At first we did not know what a gem we had in the stone and would like to protect it. I am trying to find how/whether to try to give it a good cleaning.I rinse it several times a year but it has had lots of wear.

    Any help?

  2. Troy Whitman

    July 22, 2008 at 11:08 am

    I really like the Tennessee Crab Orchard stone patio. What is a rough estimate for the cost of a patio this size? Thanks.

  3. diana gardner-williams

    July 22, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    Hello Troy,

    Well first question, are you in the Piedmont Triad Area?

    Many factors involved with a patio, front or back garden, do shrubs or trees need to be removed from the site, dry laid or mortared, and will it need landscaping around the patio?

    To throw out a number would be between 3500 and 4500 without seeing the space.

    Happy Planting

  4. Troy Whitman

    July 26, 2008 at 11:35 am

    I’m in the Triad. We’re looking at a new construction and want to add a patio off the deck. The deck is too small. The yard is sodded and has irrigation.


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