Garden design by carolyn mullet: Plant stairs with succulents - this actually works very well, the succulents thrive on the heat from the stone in summer. If you periodically wash the stairs off with a hose, that's enough water for the plants.
Create a Backyard Getaway: Ensure Privacy. Your outdoor room will feel more like an oasis if it has a sense of enclosure. Fences and garden walls ensure privacy for patios, but you can also use lattice, pergolas, and landscaping to define outdoor space