Winter Patio Decorating

Q. We’re renting a small house while building our new home. There is a cement patio screened by a trellis on two sides that is the main view from the kitchen and dining areas. Over the summer I have filled it with potted plants, but in the winter it will be very bleak if I can’t find a way to dress it up. Suggestions?

A. Try draping grapevine from your trellis in the fall and winter. Grapevine is available at many art supply stores or florist shops, does not need maintenance, and will last right through until spring. Adding strands of tiny white lights intertwined with the grapevine will create a sparkly, charming area for sipping hot cider or wine. You can even make your patio area more festive by hanging gourds or small pumpkins in the fall, and sprigs of juniper, boxwood or holly during the holidays.