Keep Cool on Your Deck When the Weather Hots Up
The longest day is behind us but the sunshine looks set to stick around a little bit longer, so here’s our suggestions for keeping cool on your deck when the heat is on!
Sunny summer days are made for relaxing outdoors, and as parks and beer gardens around the country fill up with sun-worshippers, your own deck can be a welcome oasis of calm.
So whether you’re a long-term deck owner or you’re planning on transforming your garden for the very first time, you want to be able to make the most of your outdoor space when the sun is shining. Read on to check out our top tips…
While you might want to catch as many rays as possible, it’s best to have some shady areas to cool off in, just in case! This is especially important for young children, older people and pets who can all start to struggle if the sun is too fierce.
Buildings and trees can offer natural shade, but if your deck is fully exposed, you might want to invest in a parasol at the very least. There are some beautiful free-standing options out there, and most outdoor tables come with a space for a parasol, which must be secured with a suitable base-weight.
If you feel like splashing out a little more, you could consider investing in a permanent awning or canopy, or even a stylish pergola like the one Andy Tudbury of Halcyon Days created for his BBC Gardeners World Live show garden. Awnings and canopies can add a splash of complementary colours – choose brighter shades for modern grey toned decking such as Gravel Path or Island Mist, and earthier or neutral tones to complement rich browns such as Spiced Rum.
If you’re spending the day on the deck, make sure you keep a stock of cold drinks nearby. A simple cooler box packed with ice and bottles or cans of cold drinks will do the job, or you can save space by finding a cooler that doubles as a stylish table too.
Alternatively, go for retro-chic with a Kilner drinks dispenser which you can fill with water, ice and maybe fruit such as lemon or cucumber to add some flavour. Or, mix up your favourite mocktail so you have a refreshing drink on standby all day – with an eight litre capacity, it’s ideal for parties and barbecues too.
And since Trex decking is stain-resistant, you don’t need to worry about spilling as a simple wash will bring it back to its best.
Not only do plants add colour to your garden, they also purify the air and can help to keep it cooler too so it’s a good idea to add a little greenery.
If you chose decking to keep the outdoor space low-maintenance, don’t worry: you can buy plenty of ready-potted leafy plants that will also save to create shady spots on the decking that will just need watering regularly to ensure they’re in good health.
There are several varieties of tree that will do very well in pots on your decking, such as Japanese maple, olive trees (which you can bring indoors when the weather turns) or native fruit trees like apple and pear. The Royal Horticultural Society has a handy guide here.
So enjoy the great British summer from the comfort of your own deck – and don’t forget to wear sunscreen!