Spring is in the air and we are all looking forward to brighter days —especially since from 29 March the government’s lockdown roadmap allows Brits to meet in groups of up to six people from multiple households or an unlimited number of people from two households in private gardens.
If you’re looking forward to catching up on some much-needed time with family and friends outdoors, then you might be thinking about getting your garden ready to host a socially-distanced get together. And with retailers already reporting that sales of garden seating and accessories are higher than in previous years, now is the perfect time to get ready to update your outdoor space.
We’ve gathered together some of the best outdoor furniture deals, pizza ovens, garden decoration ideas and fun outdoor games for the kids to give you some inspiration for a great garden gathering.
The British weather is anything but predictable and keeping your guests warm and comfortable will ensure your al-fresco get together can carry on long into the evening. This rattan dining set with a gas firepit table is ideal for outdoor entertaining, even if the weather turns chilly.
The corner sofa and stools will seat six, with a table that boasts a gas firepit to provide light, heat and ambience as the night draws in. The grey rattan provides a modern look to your garden and is manufactured from a synthetic material that has weatherproof qualities, meaning you can leave the furniture outside in all weathers.
Swing into Spring
This swinging hammock chair makes a great place to relax with friends—or to stretch out by yourself with a good book and gently sway under the overhead canopy. It has a sturdy steel frame that has been powder coated to make it rust-resistant and weatherproof.
It’s easy to assemble and comes complete with thickly padded seats, plus a drinks holder and side tray to hold snacks and a glass of fizz for the ultimate in garden comfort. This set has an optional cover to protect the seating when not in use – and when purchased together there is a 5% discount, making this an affordable seating option that will add a touch of luxury to your garden.
A barbeque always helps to get the party started, and if you are serious about outdoor dining then it’s worth investing in a traditional kettle-style charcoal barbeque to get that smoky flavour into your food. This Weber Master Touch Premium is a great all-rounder with a 57cm diameter cooking area and a built-in thermometer so that food cooks evenly when the lid is closed.
If you prefer the convenience and speed of a gas barbie, then Argos have come up trumps with their affordable three burner Outdoor Kitchen Gas Barbeque. It can feed up to 12 people and is packed with handy features including a side burner on which to warm tasty accompaniments, such as sticky BBQ sauce, and a warming rack so you can serve all your guests together.
Fast, al-fresco food
Add pizazz to your garden gathering with an outdoor pizza oven. The Ooni pizza oven takes just fifteen minutes to reach temperature and can cook an authentic stone-baked pizza in 60 seconds. It’s fired by wood pellets which adds a warm, smoky flavour to your food.
If you really want to impress your guests, why not get creative and serve them a homemade pizza. The base is simple to make using just flour, yeast, salt and water—and everyone can top their own pizza ready for cooking. From classic Margherita to a more unusual
everyone can enjoy their favourite flavours.
Keep the kids occupied outdoors
While the adults are catching up it’s important to keep any little ones busy outdoors — and giant garden games are a fun way to do this.
Our favourites include these giant wooden dominoes, which are guaranteed to provide traditional fun away from digital devices, or outdoor quoits with lightweight rings that are easy for little hands to throw.
For a game the whole family can enjoy, giant Jenga is a sure-fire winner. This ethically-sourced pine Jenga set will build a tower that stands four feet tall and comes complete with a canvas carry bag for easy storage.
Children will also enjoy having their very own seating area and this children’s wooden picnic table from IKEA, provides the perfect place to eat snacks, get creative with colouring pencils or play board games. It can be ordered online and is a real bargain at just £30.
Create the ultimate outdoor oasis
Ambience is everything — and some carefully placed lighting can make your outdoor living space feel more inviting. For a cosy glow, this 3-metre traditional-style string of light bulbs is perfect for illuminating your patio, and as they are solar-powered, they’ll light up automatically as darkness falls.
Water features add a calm serenity to gardens, and the sound of gently bubbling water is very relaxing. This contemporary grey water feature has three levels of running water and a solar-powered LED light to act as a focal point of the garden.
Outdoor dining accessories
To keep drinks cool outdoors, this 5 litre Kilner drinks dispenser can be topped up with ice and homemade lemonade, to keep your guests refreshed. And to keep your indoor glasses safe, these reusable tumblers look and feel like glass, yet are designed from a shatterproof BPA-free plastic—and are even dishwasher safe.
If you want to avoid the risk of breaking your best china outdoors this colourful, BPA-free plastic set of plates and bowls provides a durable alternative. The set includes four large plates and four bowls which can be filled with nibbles and shared.
Get in the garden and enjoy!
We hope we’ve left you feeling inspired about outdoor entertaining. Follow our tips and you’ll be ready to welcome friends and family for a garden get together from March 29.