Here comes the summer and having the air conditioned turned on all the time is not a solution; it is too expensive … There are other options for dealing with the heat which is not necessarily more expensive than to have turned on the air conditioning. The idea, the most important of all, an appropriate way, depending on the location and orientation of the house / apartment, do ensure that the heat DOES NOT get inside.
What can we do to face summer’s heat? First if you have not any shutters or sunblind on your windows yet, it’s time, especially on windows that are exposed to the sun. If there is not enough room you can put them inside and when we go to work or on holiday, you can close shutters to protect the house from the heat.
Never forget that the air and freshness are the earth mainly because we have nature, plants and trees. So another solution is to place on the terrace / balcony or indoors deciduous plants, making shade in summer and do not hide the sun in winter. Moreover, the plants keep by the mean of evapotranspiration, a comfortable atmosphere of freshness. You can plant a tree that will be placed in front of the windows, south or west, to make shade during the summer. If you’re in an apartment, many trees resist in pot. If the pot is big enough, you will never have a problem. Choose trees that are not very sensitive (ex. a lemon tree on a balcony will not last long, and especially you will never have fruits or difficultly, but an avocado or eucalyptus will do just fine). If you have more money to spend, you can create a pergola in the courtyard / balcony, an arbor over a window facing south, the vines will bring shade and filter the sun.
You can also install a fence: it protects from the sun, makes shadow and allows air to circulate. By choosing shrubs with flowers or fruits it will become even more fun. The easy way of course is to use canes, bamboo, etc … Of course; it will not cost you anything to adopt for the beginning green behavior by:
- closing the blinds during the day,
- closing out the windows if its hotter outside than inside,
- watering plants at night to cool the atmosphere,
- And finally when the outside temperature drops open the windows so that you can push away the heat stored in the walls, floors, etc..
If it’s still not enough, especially in Greece where the summer is very hot, then you need to choose an energy-saving system (see updates and buy).
 Deciduous plants are losing all part of their foliage in mid-autumn and have new leaves in spring. Usually they are more resistant to extreme temperatures in winter (http://fytosymvoules.blogspot.com/2011/04/blog-post_9050.html).