If you're looking to increase your backyard entertaining space on a budget consider making this concrete patio bench. You'll put together the sides with concrete blocks and the top is a wooden plank covered with scrap foam padding and outdoor fabric.
Here is the vertical cedar fence my hubby built (with my design, lumber shopping and staining help - I'm useless with a hammer though) to cover up the two hideous air conditioning units. We left lots of air for units to breathe so hopefully its fine.
Instead of flower boxes, put cushions for seating. Pergola w/ flower boxes, Just recently completed this project for a friend. Very large with large flower boxes., Custom flower boxes ready for planting, Patios & Decks Design