Summer is coming to an end and the cold is beginning to creep in. You may have created an outdoor oasis which you enjoyed during the long summer days, but now that it is getting colder, you start to question the functionality of your outdoor spaces. It is awful to feel cooped up in your house, even when it is cold outside. So, why not make a few changes to your outdoor space to still make it useful, even in the cold winter months
? We all learned the importance of fresh air and sunlight in the past few years – both for your physical and mental health. And with just a few small tweaks to your existing garden setup, you will notice a huge difference which will enable you to enjoy your outdoor living space
all year round.
How To Still Enjoy Your Garden In The Winter Months
Get rid of muddy lawns
Your young ones might enjoy splashing in puddles, but no reasonable adult will want to spend time on a soggy lawn or a patio filled with puddles. Drainage is important for both your lawn, flower beds and paved areas. A raised deck, such as composite decking
from Ecoscape, is ideal for outdoor areas as it will allow water to flow through the boards. This material is also environmentally friendly
, durable and slip-resistant even when wet, making it the perfect decking for outside.
You may not have noticed how worn-down your garden has become through constant use in the summer. You can give it a quick spruce up by cleaning the outdoor furniture, tending to your beds, weeding and mowing the lawn, and using a pressure washer to spray down any paved areas. This will make your garden look fresh for the coming months.
Garden furniture that resists all weather
Ideally, you want to invest in weather-resistant garden furniture. This furniture will be able to withstand the sun’s UV rays and also the wet, snowy winter weather
. Typically, this garden furniture will be made from teak, poly-resin wicker or stainless steel
. If the outdoor seating area has any throws, pillows or cushions, make sure to bring these items inside when it rains or snows. Check the weather forecast to make sure there are no unexpected weather phenomena while you sleep.
Have some shelter from the rain (or sun)
Having an outdoor space with protection from the cold (or heat) is ideal if you want your garden furniture to last. A hard roof or ceiling would be best as it is durable. Consider a glass canopy, a wooden gazebo or a steel sliding roof. You can also use a canvas gazebo, although this material is not extremely durable when it gets wet or freezing. For existing patio roofs, hang some waterproof drapes around the seating area. These drapes can be closed to keep out the cold and retain the heat.
Create heat in your outdoor space
To make your garden work hard in winter, make sure you have some sort of heat so that you and your guests can still feel cosy on cold nights. A fire pit
is a worthy investment, as it gives off heat and creates a comfortable conversation area. Outdoor gas heaters are fairly expensive, but if you have ever sat outside at a bistro during winter, you know how amazing these heaters can be – especially those with umbrella-shaped tops. For patios with roofs and secluded areas, an outdoor wood burner works well, and garden furniture can be arranged around the wood-burning stove to keep everyone warm. Lastly, some additional blankets on your outside chairs will keep everyone extra toasty while entertaining outside.
Make food outside
When it comes to making food in winter, an outdoor kitchen is the way to go – whether it is a formal set-up with cookers and a pizza oven or something as convenient as a grill. An outdoor kitchen will allow you to entertain guests and provide them with warm food that they can enjoy outside during the colder months.
Exercise in the garden
The garden is not the only thing that has to work hard in the coming months – you can work hard too! You can enjoy your garden throughout the year if you create a designated exercise area outside. It may be cold at the start, but you will heat up in no time. Store some weights and other gym equipment in a storage box or shed, and try to incorporate outdoor exercise into your daily regime.
Create a space for fun
Even if your garden is absolutely beautiful, sometimes people will want a reason to venture out into the cold. Try to treat your garden like an additional room in your house, and continue enjoying activities that you would’ve done in the house in your outdoor living space. This can include any of the following:
- Use a projector and show a movie, family videos or a sports match outside. Provide blankets and hot drinks.
- Use the grill, pizza oven or open fire to provide hot food to guests that they can enjoy outside.
- Play board games or Jenga outside. Use a heater to make the game night extra cosy.
- Host a themed party or holiday party, and give guests the option of being indoors or outdoors. Make sure to decorate the outside space to match the theme.
- Have a snowman building contest, and provide hot drinks to your guests.
Light up your life
You can quickly transform your garden by adding lighting to different areas outside. String lights or fairy lights work well to create a warm atmosphere, although you would want some brighter lights if you want your guests to eat outside. You can also make use of solar lights (these lights work even on overcast days!) and LED lights for an energy-efficient alternative. Lanterns will provide soft light, or you can include a couple of candles to warm up the space.
Bright colours will make your outdoor living space more inviting. Paint your furniture, add patterned cushions and throws, or choose brightly coloured flowering plants to liven up a dull space.
Buy an outdoor rug
A hard-wearing outdoor rug is one of those garden accessories that you will never regret purchasing. Outdoor rugs make outside areas feel cosier and also add colour and texture. These rugs are also low maintenance and easy to clean – power washing or a quick spray with your hose will do the trick.
Many trees lose their leaves during autumn and winter, but that does not mean you have to allow your entire garden to go into hibernation during the cooler months. There are plenty of evergreen shrubs and potted plants that you can include in your garden. Having greenery and flowers outside during winter will increase your likelihood of spending time outside.
Invest in a hot tub Hot tubs
are enjoyed throughout the year, but they are such an amazing addition in winter. When it gets cold outside, there is nothing quite like soaking in some hot water while being massaged by bubbles. Have friends over for a hot tub session, or enjoy the silence and soak by yourself.
Heat your pool
Your pool is probably the highlight of your backyard during the summer months but becomes a bit of a white elephant in the garden when you cover it up for winter. Fortunately, there is a way in which you can still enjoy your pool during winter, it will just require some initial costs. You can heat your pool using solar panels, which will make it usable throughout the year. Just note that this technology works great in the winter
time, but will not work as well in regions with heavy snowfall.
Landscape To Prepare For The Coming Months
Giving your garden a good tidy is the first step to making sure you can enjoy it during the cooler months. You can also landscape your garden
to keep it looking fresh throughout the year. Here are some simple tips for landscaping
your garden to prepare it for the coming months.
- Use mulch in your flower beds. This will prevent beds from becoming waterlogged, and also provide your plants with much-needed nutrition.
- Plant flowers and greenery that blooms in winter or remains leafy during the cold months. You will be able to get a selection of annuals and evergreens from your local nursery.
- Use a rake to remove any fallen leaves, branches, sticks or other organic debris from your lawn and paved areas. Give the patio area, fences and walls a once-over with a pressure washer.
- Consider your garden accessories. Opt for items that are decorative but functional, such as a pretty garden hose holder, planters, a water feature, outdoor shelving where you can store tools and plants, and functional furniture such as storage boxes that double as seating.
- Trim your lawn around your flower beds so that it looks finished. Additionally, you can install borders around your lawn edges. These borders can be purchased from your nearest garden and DIY store, or you can pack stones along the edges for an easy but modern effect.
- Use gravel in areas that become waterlogged or where grass doesn’t grow because of a lack of sunshine.
- Add lighting to walkways, seating areas, or any areas in the garden you want to show off. Ground lighting that shines upwards is beautiful to illuminate trees, wall scones work well in dining areas, and small solar lights are beautiful to light a pathway.
How can I make my outdoor space feel cosier?
There are a few additions that will make an outdoor space feel cosier:
- Add blankets, pillows, throws, cushions and an outdoor rug to your seating area.
- Use fairy lights throughout the garden.
- Add potted plants to paved areas.
- Plant climbing plants along fences or bare walls.
- Use candles when you are entertaining outside.
Can I use my patio year-round?
Yes! With a few small tweaks you can enjoy your patio throughout the year:
- Block the wind by using screens, drapes or plants.
- Use furniture that is weather-resistant.
- Use heaters and blankets to keep the cold at bay.
What is the best form of outdoor heating?
Infrared patio heaters are the best for outdoor use. These heaters are environmentally friendly
, affordable and extremely efficient, even on cold nights.
You don’t have to hide inside when the weather turns grey! With some foresight and planning as well as making use of our handy Ecoscape composite materials, you will be able to make a few small changes to your outdoor space that will allow you to enjoy it throughout the year.