Now that the hotter months have arrived, we’re turning our attention to those outdoor areas. There’s nothing like relaxing in the garden with a cold drink on a warm summer’s evening. However, our gardens have just emerged from a period of neglect, and they could do will freshening up a little – particularly before we invite our guests round for barbecues and garden parties. Here are 10 quick updates to help revive your garden this summer.
1) Introduce a bee hotel
Over the last couple of years, one main aim for natural trusts has been to help to flourish the struggling bee population. With many of their habitats being destroyed, bees are rapidly decreasing in population; which is tragic, considering one out of every three bites of food we eat comes from a plant that was pollinated by a bee. To help bees find a new home, you could introduce a bee hotel into your garden. They’re actually pretty stylish. You can create your own by cutting lengths of hollow bamboo and stacking them inside a crate. Or you can buy one online. The one below is from Plant Theatre Limited and comes with a pack of bee-friendly plant seeds!
2) Hang some tea lights
To add a little ambience to your garden in the evening when the light starts to dim, hang some stylish tea light holders from a branch, and fire them up! They’ll act like warm floating globes, and will cast a gorgeous flickering light onto their surroundings. Get these from Not on the High Street.
3) Update furniture with mosaics
Got an old wooden table in your garden, that’s in need of a bit of a revamp? Mosaics are an easy and affordable way to breathe new life into old garden furniture. Choose a colourful mosaic tile, or a mosaic with an eye-catching iridescent sheen – something that will really stand out when it glimmers under the sunlight. Simply apply the mosaics using a simple tile adhesive or glue gun, and fill the joints with a water resistant grout.
4) Add a fire pit
Following the smoking ban, the advancements in electric outdoor heating really came on leaps and bounds. But if you prefer the natural approach to heating an outdoor area (burning spirits or wood), then you’ll need yourself a burner. Chimineas are nice and traditional, but if you fancy something a little more contemporary, go for a fire pit!
5) Ditch the slippery decking and concrete slabs
Got a patch of decking in your garden? Then you’ll know how slippery and dangerous it is when it gets wet, and you’ll know how bleached the planks go once the sun is on them. Porcelain paving slabs are the perfect alternative. We have some incredibly stylish options with gripping anti-slip finishes for added safety. Piece together a wood effect, marble effect or stone effect platform in your garden! Tiles don’t fade in the sun, they don’t splinter, and they don’t require constant treatment and maintenance, unlike natural wood. They’re also grippier and more resistant to staining than
6) Update a drab patio area with Moroccan Tiles
Tired of staring at a dull, dismal concrete patio? Grey, lifeless patio areas are certainly a downer when trying to relax in a garden area. Revive them by creating a Moroccan statement floor in your outdoor spaces. Arabesque designs are full of bright, bold geometric patterns, and are perfect for adding character and personality to an otherwise dull area. From as little as £14.95 per tile, you’ve no excuse not to give your garden a Marakech makeover this summer.
Above: Chatham Tiles
7) Reinvent your garden path
Want to up your curb appeal this summer? Reinvent that plain old garden path with the addition of some stylish, timeless Victorian tiles. Made from clay, they’ll add a grand, exclusive, ‘Downton’ look to any exterior area. A mixture of white, red and black geometric pieces, you can piece together your own striking, unique design.
8) Make a mosaic bird bath
Want to encourage more nature to visit your garden? Why not introduce a birdbath? If you don’t want to fork out lots of money for one, and you feel like getting your craft on, you could always make your own.
9) Grow your own herb garden
Love to cook? Add some greenery into your garden (and save yourself a bit of money) by introducing a herb garden! Buy a tub and plant the seeds yourself, or buy a pre-assembled set. We like this Vintage Herb Garden Planter from Waitrose. If you hang it by the back door, you can simply nip outside and take some clippings when you’re cooking up a tasty meal.
Above: Acacia Wood Grey Trough Planter, £42.50, Dunelm
10) Add some tea cup planters
Create a ‘Mad Hatter tea party’ vibe in your garden by adding some fantastic tea cup planters! Add some soil and a plant, and there you have it – a zany, colourful addition to an outdoor area. For best results, collect a mish-mash of different sized cups. Available from Not on the High Street.
We hope you like one or two of these ideas enough to introduce them into your garden this summer! For a guide to piecing together your own alfresco living area, visit our post: Create an Outdoor Living Area.