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The key element to a Mexican-themed garden is a space that offers a relaxed atmosphere to dine and socialize. Southwestern gardens pull influence from Spanish Colonial and Moroccan architecture and style. To stay true to the design, remember to incorporate a vibrant color scheme like bright yellows and warm reds. Another element that should be incorporated in a Mexican garden design is water. South westerners use water to symbolize the livelihood of their community. You can add a well for a traditional feel or a water fountain for a modern touch.
Below is a list of other cultural decor ideas that will have your outdoor space looking festive and ready for some awesome barbeque fiestas this summer.
Mexican Plants for Your Garden
Cacti, fruit trees and broad leafed plants---like birch, elm, oak, and maple---are plants typically found in the Southwest. Again, allow your plants to add color to the space. Tropical plants that offer a vibrant hue can add a lot of personality to your garden. When you visit your local plant shop, talk to someone who can educate you on the plants that are best for your region. This will ensure longevity of your plants.
Examples of Southwestern plants include bromeliads, bougainvillea, orchids, dahlia, agave and rex-begonia.
A Mexican-Styled Patio
Mexican patios often use ceramic tiles in warm reds, browns and terra cottas to create a fun outdoor space. You can also opt to use stamped concrete with tile patterns that mimic Mexican ceramic characteristics. Stamped concrete tends to be less expensive than the material it is mimicking, which makes it a go-to product for homeowners remodeling on a budget. An added plus is that it doesn’t take away from the authentic appeal of your design.
You can get as creative as you’d like with your patio tiles. Add decorative boarders, or embed small stones into the concrete to create mosaic patterns, a popular design incorporated into Mexican patios. You also have the option to add stencils or saw cuts for more of an Aztec design.
Mexican Patio Furniture Styles
Incorporating a dining area into your Mexican patio is a must-have. Get creative with furniture styles; rustic wood and wrought iron elements keep the authenticity of the design. Have fun with brightly colored throw pillows; stripes or bold colors are popular choices. Interested in making your patio a place to relax? Try installing a hammock, which offers ultimate comfort for outdoor naps!
The Courtyard Fountain
Adding water into the design of your Mexican garden should not be overlooked. Whether you’re adding a pool, pond or a cascading waterfall, be sure to continue with your Mexican theme. Incorporate a few artistic tile designs and natural stone to your patio area. Because fountains were seen as a place where the family gathered in Mexico, pay attention to every detail. Adding hand-painted Talavera tiles to the bottom of your fountain is another way to stay with the theme.
Tip: For smaller patio designs, try a freestanding fountain or wall fountains. You can still add personality to a small space, so don’t forget to have fun with different color schemes.
Décor & Pottery Ideas
Here is another area that should showcase a ton of color. Use pottery rich with vibrant hues and wrought iron hanging lights paired with brightly colored rugs, throw pillows and blankets to capture the authenticity the design needs. Don’t be afraid to paint your walls, stick with blues and yellows. If you’re cringing just thinking about all that color, then start slow. Maybe paint only your door or window frames. Also, try to add an umbrella for shade and décor.
Outdoor Cooking, Mexican Style
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Because your Mexican garden will be a gathering space for your family, adding a cooking area can really be a plus. A traditional option would be anything made of clay, but feel free to make it a bit more modern if you’d like. Again, try to decorate with Mexican-inspired materials, like Talavera tiles. Because it’s summertime and you’re likely going to have a ton of barbeque fiestas, make sure you keep it as functional as possible. Don’t take up all the extra space so that your guests can still be comfortable.
Bonus: Add A Mexican-Inspired Fireplace
What’s an outdoor space if you can’t have a cozy fireplace for romantic cold nights? A kiva fireplace made of adobe works as a Southwestern staple for your outdoor space. For an authentic appeal, use brick, terra cotta tiles or adobe stucco to create a south of the border fire pit. Again, feel free to mix it up with traditional and modern touches.
A continuous theme will give your space a finished look and capture the authenticity of the design. Remembering that your Mexican garden is more of a space to gather rather than just a quick outdoor activity will help when building your outdoor space.
What other suggestions would you include to create a Mexican garden? Let us know in the comments below.