As the nights draw in and cloudy skies bring more rain, most of us spend less time in our gardens. If you have decking, your garden may even become a no-go zone. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are five ways to create a deck you can enjoy all year round.
1. Stay on your feet with non-slip decking
Rain, ice and algae can all make traditional timber and composite decking dangerously slippery. By choosing non-slip decking, you can create a deck that stays safe, whatever the weather.
With aggregate anti-slip inserts, Gripsure non-slip timber decking has the highest non-slip rating on the market. That means that, even when the ground is wet or icy, you and your friends and family can enjoy the deck without the fear of slipping.
With a range of options, from sleek Contemporary, to grooved Home and ultra-sustainable Bamboo, there’s something to suit every garden. You can even personalise your decking, using DeckArt to design a deck that celebrates your unique home and garden.
2. Accessorise for every season
The rise in remote working means many of us are spending most of our time at home. That means it’s more important than ever to get outside when we can. Perhaps you’ll start taking your morning coffee outside or regularly inviting friends over to enjoy an alfresco meal.
With the right accessories, you can create a cosy outdoor area – a space in which to unwind or entertain during the colder months.
Waterproof cushions and weather resistant rugs can turn your deck into a comfortable, indulgent space. Beautiful lighting, from festoon lights to Moroccan style lanterns, can instantly transform the most ordinary garden into a magical place.
3. Dine alfresco
Why limit your outdoor meals to the occasional summer barbecue? With the right equipment and, more importantly, the right attitude, you can dine outside all year round.
We now have a huge choice of barbecues, smokers and outdoor ovens, which are designed for expertly cooking up delicious alfresco meals. More serious cooks might want to go one step further and build a complete outdoor kitchen so they can not only eat outside but prepare food in the open air too.
Whether it’s a Halloween feast, a Saturday night pizza or even a barbecued Christmas dinner, there are many ways to turn an autumn or winter meal into a memorable event.
4. Create year-round interest with planting
The right planting crucial if you want your deck to look beautiful all year round.
A good approach would be to plant containers for every season. You can then move them on and off the deck so that the best-looking pots are always on display. Spring narcissus, hyacinths and tulips could then make way for dahlias, lilies and agapanthus in the summer months. While autumn and winter are more challenging for container planting, cyclamen, violas and rudbeckias will add some seasonal colour.
For all-year-round interest, you could add some evergreen plants. A pot of hardy succulents would create an eye-catching feature. Or, if you want something larger, an acer or yucca are both architectural plants that can work well in containers.
When putting plant pots on a deck, it is important to use planter feet or pot risers to avoid surface water from collecting underneath and causing staining or rot. Rotating your pots will also help to keep your decking damage-free.
Don’t limit yourself to traditional containers. A wall, fence or trellis that runs alongside a deck can provide the prefect spot for a climbing plant. Wall hanging containers and vertical planters provide a wealth of options for growing plants around a deck. You could even plant a vertical herb garden or create a green wall with bee and butterfly-friendly wildflowers.
5. Consider a shelter for your deck
Let’s face it, our winter weather can be harsh and there will be times when we just have to stay indoors. Building a shelter over your deck, however, will increase your chances of enjoying more time outdoors all year round.
During the pandemic, many people have created garden rooms so they can extend their living space. While a canvas cover, wooden shelter or awning may be an investment, it could seriously improve your quality of life. And that’s what having a garden deck should be about.
Find out more about Gripsure non-slip decking.