By Beth Murton
If you've always thought that you can't enjoy spending time in your garden once winter arrives, it's time to think again. With a few practical winter garden buys you can ensure your outdoor space can be used all year long. Whether it's for an alfresco catch up with friends or a fun pizza night with the kids, there are plenty of ways to make the most of your garden during the colder months of the year.
Cosying up your patio is easier than you might think too. A classic fire pit or patio heater will keep everyone warm and toasty, while a pizza oven or BBQ is perfect for some alfresco winter cooking. The best part? With plenty of amazing Black Friday garden deals on offer right now, you'll be able to give your outdoor space a welcoming winter makeover for less too.
So if you want to make the most of your garden this season, I've put together the winter garden buys you should add to your Black Friday shopping list. You might find a few ideas for Christmas presents on here too. Some of these buys are tried and tested in my own garden, while others are firmly on my shopping wishlist.
1. A practical patio heater for instant heat
I'm the first to admit that sitting outdoors at this time of year isn't always the most enticing prospect, but add one of the best patio heaters to the mix and it's a more feasible option.
The latest electric patio heaters are more energy efficient and use infrared technology to directly heat people sitting nearby rather the surrounding air, which means you'll often feel more of the warmth.
2KW Outdoor Quartz Electric Garden Patio Heater |
£59.99 now £44.99 at Amazon (save £15)
Invest in this practical buy for Black Friday and you'll get three different heat settings ranging from 650W to 2000W. Its height adjustable and you can also tilt the head to make sure you feel the benefit of the heat where you need it most.
2. A classic fire pit for an inviting focal point
If patio heaters aren't your thing but you still want to ensure your winter patio is warm and welcoming rather than cold and uninviting, you can't beat a fire pit.
Contemporary gas fire pits are becoming increasingly popular due to their ease of use, but I'm definitely a fan of the more traditional wood-burning design. We've spent many an evening with family and friends huddled around the flickering flames of our fire pit, and who doesn't love an excuse to make S'mores!
Monaco Firepit |
£39.99 £24.99 at Robert Dyas (save £15)
There aren't many occasions when you can get your hands on a fire pit that looks this good for less than £25. It's sturdy, will give off plenty of heat and is guaranteed to look perfect in the centre of your patio.
3. A wood-fired pizza oven for cooking outdoors
My two kids love pizza nights (what kid doesn't), and having your own outdoor pizza oven so you can rustle up restaurant-quality pizzas at home will take your pizza nights to the next level. Getting your hands on the best pizza oven during lockdown turned out to be pretty much impossible, but the great news is that some of our favourites are now back in stock.
For Gardeningetc's Ooni Fyra pizza oven review, I put this portable oven through its paces in all weathers, and can confirm that cooking pizza outdoors with this brilliant design is a lot of fun, whatever the time of year.
I love the authentic taste you get from cooking with wood pellets in the Fyra pizza oven, but if you prefer the convenience of cooking with gas, you'll find plenty of suitable alternatives in our Ooni pizza oven deals round up.
Ooni Fyra 12 Wood Pellet Pizza Oven |
£249 £199.20 at Ooni (save £49.80)
I rated this wood-fired pizza oven 5 out of 5 stars in my review as I love how easy it is to use and how delicious the pizzas taste. The Fyra heats up to 500˚C (950˚F) in 15 minutes and can cook a 12 inch pizza in just 60 seconds. It's lightweight (just 10kg) so you can take it with you on holiday too. Incredibly easy to set up, plus the legs fold down for easy storage. Snap this one up while you can and get nearly £50 off the usual price.
4. Stylish outdoor lighting for added atmosphere
No winter patio is complete without some atmospheric outdoor lights. Whether it's twinkling fairy lights wrapped about tree trunks, festoon lights over the top of a patio or some pretty LED lanterns dotted around your garden seating area, any space will instantly feel warmer and more inviting when properly illuminated.
With sunlight hours in short supply at this time of year, electric lighting is your best option rather than solar lighting. Festoon lights are my personal favourites for adding some instant atmosphere. For my own garden, I went for designs that can be connected to additional sets to make it easier to light a larger area from one power socket.
Extendable Bulb Festoon Lights |
£60 now £45 at Cox & Cox (save £15)
Give your patio a contemporary look this winter with a set of stylish festoon lights. There are 20 bulbs on each set, but you can connect multiple sets to increase this to a maximum of 100 lights from a single power source. IP44 rated so they are suitable for outdoor use, and the power cable is 5m long.
5. Blankets and cushions to ramp up the cosy factor
There are times when all you need is a snuggly blanket (and a woolly hat) to keep you a touch warmer outdoors. Throw a mix of blankets over your garden sofas to up the cosy factor and encourage guests to linger for longer. Just don't forget to pack your cushion and throws away again at night.
Outdoor/Indoor Chevron Woven Throw |
£35 now £31.50 at La Redoute (save £3.50)
Although this indoor/outdoor throw has the cosiness of wool, it's actually made from recycled plastic bottles so it's an eco-friendly choice for your outdoor space. It's mould, mildew and moth resistant and any spills can easily be wiped off. Available in a choice of 9 colours include coral, navy, natural and the grey pictured.
6. A luxurious hot tub to soothe away any worries
Investing in one of the best hot tubs is a great way to make the most of your outdoor space in the colder months. After all, it's easy to see the appeal of relaxing outdoors under the stars in warmth of an outdoor spa. Snuggly towels at the ready of course for when you get out!
Black Friday is one of the best times of the year for hot tub deals, so if you've been considering taking the plunge now is the ideal opportunity to grab yourself a bargain. With savings of £260, I've got my eye on this Homebase deal below.
CleverSpa Florence 6 Person Inflatable Hot Tub |
£560 now £300 (save £260) at Homebase
There's room for all the family in this 6-person hot tub. it comes with 130 massaging jets and '365 freeze guard' technology means you can enjoy using it all year round. It also comes with an insulating top cover to retain heat when not in use.
7. Pretty lanterns to light the way
No one wants to be tripping over plant pots or garden furniture in the dark, so add decorative lanterns along pathways and at the edge your patio to softly light the way.
I use battery-powered LED designs on my patio so I can get that realistic candle flicker without having to worry about the safety of kids and pets (or adults who might have enjoyed one too many mulled wines at our Christmas party).
Camden Garden Lantern with TruGlow® Candle |
£34.99 now £29.99 at Lights4Fun (save £5)
Perfect for adding a decorative touch to your front porch or garden patio, this black metal lantern features an LED candle with a realistic flame flicker. It's 36cm high and comes with a handy carry handle too.
8. A pressure washer to blast away winter dirt
OK, so I admit that a pressure washer might not be the most obvious thing to put on your shopping list when it comes to how to cosy up a patio, but nothing says cold, dreary and uninviting quite like a filthy patio covered in mud, dirt and general and winter grime.
Sweep up any leaves and garden debris from your paving, then get to work with one of the best pressure washers to give your patio a quick and easy winter makeover. Plus, a little bit of cleaning work over winter means less to do in spring.
I recently reviewed the Bosch Universal Aquatak 135 pressure washer in my own garden and gave it 4.5 out of 5 stars, so I know it's up to the job of getting your patio looking its best again.
Bosch High-Pressure Washer UniversalAquatak 135 |
£179.99 now £105 at Amazon (save £74.99)
The 3-in-1 nozzle on this pressure washer makes light work of all cleaning tasks. Use it on your patio, garden furniture or for cleaning the car. It's compact for easy storage and the extending handle and rear wheels means it's easy to move it around the garden. A great buy for Black Friday with just under £75 off.
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