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Before you add anything to your deck, create a solid foundation. Cosmetic changes can't hide a deck in disrepair or dirty, ugly boards.
Add a custom aluminum roof frame with removable clear polycarbonate panels or outdoor fabric. If you don't need protection from rain, install a retractable awning or build a pergola with vines such as wisteria climbing over it.
Guests and family members alike appreciate places to sit, and built-in benches can be made to look like original parts of the deck. Whether the benches are freestanding or attached, make them blend in by building them from the same materials used for the deck itself.
Whether bursting with flowers or foliage, hanging or artfully arranged in pots, plants are the perfect way to enliven a space and soften a deck's edges. If you have a wood deck, place the pots on brick or other supports so they're not in direct contact with the wood when you water the plants; this can lead to rot.
Railings can do more than enhance the safety and appearance of your deck -- they can make a style statement. Decorative ball tops and turned spindles are among the many specialty products available to embellish railings.
If you gave up your garden to build or expand your deck, grow veggies in containers on your deck for an eclectic look and homegrown food for dinner. Start with tomatoes, beans, peas, and carrots. Put the containers on rolling supports so you can move them around easily.
Add tall, evenly spaced 4x4 posts around the perimeter of your deck and connect them with tree limbs for a rustic look. Or add glass panels between post gaps to block wind while retaining views.
A greenhouse or a similar structure can attach to a deck and serve as a wonderful getaway space while fulfilling its designated purpose.
Consider all of your furniture options: hardy wood such as teak, aluminum, steel, and recycled plastics. An outdoor rug completes the scene.
Dedicate a corner or add on to the deck to accommodate a hot tub.
Extend your deck in one or several directions, add a level up or down, or curve an edge for visual interest.
Solar or low-voltage post-top lights create ambience when your dinner guests linger into a summer evening.
Tucked into your deck flora, statuaries can be tasteful and even mysterious -- real conversation starters.
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