Want a stylish and easy-care space in your plot? These composite deck ideas are for you.
Made from plastic and wood fibers, this landscaping material is often regarded as the superior option for decking when compared to all-timber designs. Why? Well, for starters, it isn't prone to rotting over time, unlike wood, meaning it will last longer. What's more, there's no need for the annual weatherproofing treatment that timber calls for. It also tends to be grippier underfoot, so is practical in terms of safety, too.
There are plenty of colors and finishes to choose from with this material, so you can easily find one that suits your dream garden scheme. Overall, it's a great choice when deciding which decking ideas to go for, but if you need some extra persuasion, we've rounded up plenty of gorgeous ways to incorporate it into chic outdoor living spaces.
Upgrade your space with these top 10 composite deck ideas
From illuminated levels to stunning walls, the best composite decking can be used in all sorts of ways in your plot. This roundup of ideas will soon have you inspired.
1. Update an urban roof terrace
There are lots of small deck ideas that are perfect for urban plots where space is at a premium. And if you use composite materials, the maintenance will be a breeze, too – perfect for busy city dwellers.
Here, it provides a base for an alfresco dining zone on this stylish roof terrace. A patch of artificial turf continues the low-maintenance theme, adding a shot of green that looks just as good as the real deal. Planters, a gas fire pit, and plenty of glowy lighting finish the scene perfectly.
2. Use composite decking as a sturdy outdoor kitchen base
Almost everyone wants an outdoor kitchen these days, and it's easy to see why. After all, cooking up a storm alfresco is a total joy, and they make stylish hubs for summer socializing, too.
A composite deck is the perfect flooring for these features, providing a durable, non-slip, and easy-to-clean base. Here, a second, complementary tone has been used around the counters for a subtle style statement, complete with recessed spotlights for illuminating the scene come nightfall.
3. Go bold with black
Bringing a dark and inky hue into your garden color scheme is a surefire way to create a sense of drama, and is super on-trend.
It looks gorgeous against paler furniture for a pleasing contrast, as seen in this setup, but works well with vibrant and metallic shades, too. Plus, charcoal tones will help nearby foliage to really stand out.
As well as opting for composite decking in this scheme, think about painting your fence to match for a truly cohesive aesthetic.
4. Combine a composite deck with a matching pergola
Pergolas are one of our favorite deck cover ideas, providing a spot of cool respite from the sun's glare as well as definition to a zone.
A large, pale gray and white design like this one looks absolutely gorgeous covering composite flooring in a similar hue. It ties the setup together beautifully, especially with the complementary dining furniture.
You could always hang modern outdoor pendants from the beams, to light up evening get-togethers. Hanging plants in modern containers are also a good addition to pergolas for extra color and visual interest.
5. Use composite decking vertically
Think decking is just for the floor? Think again – composite designs can be used to clad garden walls for a smart and contemporary look that lasts.
We love this wood-effect design with its rustic texture. The dark hue looks fantastic alongside pockets of lime-green planting, while the vintage-style lightbulbs add even more style points to the scene. It's a brilliant way to create a living wall backdrop for your seating space.
6. Opt for a two-toned look
With so many colors of composite decking available, there is plenty of opportunity to get creative. So, instead of choosing just one hue, why not pick two complementary shades?
This works well for garden steps ideas, where the secondary color can be used to draw attention to the edges. Not only does it look good, but it will also help prevent people from accidentally missing a step. The way that this dark gray matches the door frames of the home makes for an eye-catching touch.
7. Light it up
To give your outdoor living space after-dark appeal, you'll want to consider deck lighting ideas. Recessed spotlights are one popular option, but for an alternative approach, install strip lights beneath steps, planters, and even built-in benches, if you're including them in your design.
The result is contemporary and welcoming without being overbearing. Add subtle stake lights in the containers themselves too, to show off your planting displays.
8. Keep it sleek for chic outdoor living
Composite decking is perfect for contemporary courtyards like this – it's much easier to look after than a lawn and will always look good.
Pair with modern deck furniture and you can extend your living space effortlessly. A wall-mounted outdoor TV will elevate the setup further – cozying up for a film night beneath the stars sounds pretty good to us.
9. Build a bridge with composite decking materials
As composite materials tend to be non-slip, they're ideal for a stylish pool deck. But if you want to try something a little more unique, why stop there?
Create durable walkways and bridges over and around your pool for a playful space that's a joy to explore. If you want to up the safety factor, you could add some stylish decking railings, too.
10. Create different levels for garden zones
Decking is great for levelling out awkward slopes and creating a tiered garden. And the resulting levels can then be structured into separate zones for different activities – such as this dining area and lounging space.
The timber-effect composite decking has a timeless appeal with its warm, reddish hue, and we like how it's been set on a diagonal across the higher level for a visually pleasing contrast. The trick mentioned above, of using a secondary shade, has also been used here to accentuate the steps.
What different types of composite decking are there?
'There is an increasing number of composite decking brands,' says Karl Harrison – pro landscaper and Trex decking expert, 'and some have been around for many years. It is these brands that can be relied upon for superior performance and quality of warranty.
'Some composite decking boards can be called true wood replica decking boards, whilst some should be appreciated for exactly what they are.' There are multiple color and textures available.
'Recycled products are best for the environment and some are recycled again at the end of their useful life,' he continues. For instance, Trex is one of the largest plastic recyclers in the US, last year saving 800 million pounds of recycled plastic film to create their eco-friendly decks. So, if you're looking to create a more sustainable garden, this is definitely something to consider when choosing the best decking for your space.
The garden was always a big part of Holly's life growing up, as was the surrounding New Forest where she lived. Her appreciation for the great outdoors has only grown since then. She's been an allotment keeper, a professional gardener, and a botanical illustrator – plants are her passion. But, she loves all things digital too. She joined the team at Gardeningetc after working as a freelance content creator for a web agency, whilst studying for her M.Sc. in Marketing. Now she feels lucky enough to combine both digital and botanical worlds, every day.
The RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022: what to expect from this year's event
Gardens Plan your visit to RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2022 with our guide, including what to see and ticket info
By Sarah Wilson • Published
Growing potatoes in containers: top tips for these staple crops
Grow Your Own Small garden? No problem – growing potatoes in containers is easy with this expert advice
By Holly Crossley • Published