The last year has seen more homeowners than ever picking up spades to tend to their gardens. However, the explosion in gardening hasn't just affected flowerbeds but impacted the most in-demand garden must-haves we're shopping for.
There has been an explosion in interest in the best garden furniture. But forget a simple patio table and chairs, now homeowners are upping their alfresco game and investing in hanging egg chairs and firepit ideas.
The boundaries between indoors and outdoors have become blurred as many have turned to their green space as somewhere to cook, relax and entertain. We spoke to industry experts to reveal the latest garden must-haves we're snapping up for our backyards.
Most in-demand garden must-haves
1. Pizza ovens
Remember the days when BBQs were a mainstay of alfresco dining? Only the truly fanciest of gardens had a pizza oven. Well, pizza ovens have now gone mainstream.
Lakeland reports seeing a 300 per cent increase in sales of its Ooni Pizza oven range in the last year. Pizza ovens have become so popular you can even pick a budget version up at Aldi.
'It's no surprise to see that outdoor electrical sales have increased, as the past year spent at home, with the time in lockdown, has clearly encouraged more of us to focus on our outdoor and garden space,' says Will Jones, a gardening expert at AO.com.
Alongside many electrical tools seeing a rise in sales, outdoor projectors have seen an increase in demand of 126 per cent compared to last year.
Outdoor projectors are great for creating a movie night under the stars with the family. However, we have a feeling outdoor viewing habits are going to continue to grow especially as Samsung has recently launched its first outdoor TV, The Terrace.
How long will it be before outdoor TVs become the norm too?
3. Outdoor showers
Now, this new garden must-have shocked us. According to retailer ManoMano, sales of outdoor showers have increased by 16 per cent.
However, they aren't the only ones seeing the rise of this new outdoor bathroom trend. 'We've seen a huge growth in 2021 with website searches for outdoor bathing increased by 200 per cent in the last few months,' says James Hickman, CEO of Plumbworld.
The trend for outdoor showers has grown so popular it has even coined its own trending name – 'wild washing'. At this rate, could 2022 be the year of the outdoor bathroom?
4. Swimming pools
Brainstorming pool ideas has fast become the norm in gardens on both sides of the Atlantic. ManoMano reports that its swimming pool sales are up 70 per cent on last year.
However, many homeowners who can't justify the cost or the space for their own kidney bean-shaped pool are turning to crafty alternatives. Stock tank pools have fast become a garden staple on Instagram, with shipping container pools not far behind.
Fire pits have been growing in popularity since Love Island sprang onto our screens with its statement outdoor design. However, in the last year, as many of us have been forced to socialize outside, fire pits and garden heaters have become essentials.
Over the last year, garden furniture company Moda Furnishings has seen an 88 per cent rise in sales of fire pits. This is a trend Jonny Brierley, CEO of Moda Furnishings, predicts will continue to grow in winter.
'Never before has the word "cozy" been associated with the garden. Historically, gardens have been utility spaces, or for aesthetic value such as decorative botanical gardens,' he explains.
'Now, however, people want to give their garden a cozy feel, making it an extension of their homes.'
6. Outdoor soundbars
Our homes are fully kitted out with smart speakers, allowing our music to follow us through the house. Why then shouldn't our gardens be?
AO.com has seen sales of wireless speakers increase by 114 per cent since March 2020. The best bluetooth speakers can be tucked away behind your outdoor seating for music while entertaining or simply relaxing.
The pandemic has transformed what we expect from our gardens. Will you be adding any of the new 'garden essentials' to your space?
Rebecca has worked as a homes and interiors journalist for over four years, and is currently the Deputy Editor on Ideal Home online. Previously, she was the News Editor across the Future homes and gardens brands, including Gardeningetc.com. She lives in a rented flat in South London where she makes the most of window boxes to create small container gardens. Inside she has a jungle of houseplants in nearly every room which she does her best to keep up with regular watering and repotting.
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