The 50 Best Garden Gear

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From barbecues for your patio to solar lights for your flowerbeds, Trish Lorenz digs out all the kit you’ll need to enjoy getting green fingers this spring

Planting:

Fibre pot planter

couvertureandthegarbstore.com, from £29

These are almost too stylish to use in the garden. From French brand Seax Maison D’etre, the pots employ layers of canvas. Available in a variety of colours.

Lion Feet planters

plumo.com, from £25

These are charming even when empty. We like the pastel colours and crackle glaze finish and the fact that their organic shapes and little feet give them a fantastical but alive feel.

Socker watering can

ikea.com, £10

These brightly coloured watering cans are a good value buy. When you’re not using them, they could also double as a plant pot if the sun fails to make an appearance this summer.

Heritage seeds

sparrowandfinch.co.uk, £12.95/pack

Choose between the wild flower, vegetable, herb or tomato collections and grow yourself a heritage garden from scratch. Or display them on a kitchen shelf.

Herb planter

gardenbeet.com, £28 each  or £65 for three

These have an interesting geometric edge that sets them apart – the irregular form gives the illusion that each pot is unique, especially when displayed in a group.

 

Cooking:

Denver barbecue

diy.com, £249

This masonry barbecue is long-lasting and has a shape that could make it a focal point in a garden. It comes unpainted so if you like the white and red effect you’ll need to paint it before assembly.

Blooma Kansas 4-burner barbecue

diy.com, £199

With four gas burners, this monster can feed the whole family in one go with any number of dishes. It also has a temperature gauge, side  burner and warming rack.

Whitstable barbecue

gardentrading.co.uk, £24

Low-cost, portable and very simple to use, it only really caters for a picnic-style snack but this means it is perfect if you have the urge to charcoal nothing more complicated than a sausage or two.

Weber Q120 barbecue

johnlewis.com, £209

This gas barbecue may be portable but it doesn’t scrimp on features, coming complete with a workspace on either side and a handy tool holder. It’s sturdy on its feet too, making it easy to use.

Portable Kettle barbecue

johnlewis.com, £29

This has a compact 36cm diameter and is well priced but doesn’t compromise on style. It’s ideal for patios, balconies and small gardens, or for taking to the beach.

Landmann barbecue

asda.com, £39

If you’re short on space, this has a grill large enough to cater for four but a space-saving footprint. The pedestal design also puts the grill at a good height for most cooks.

Practical Homemaker apron

johnlewis.com, £12

No outdoor cooking experience is truly complete without a novelty apron and we particularly like the play  on words on this one.

Stainless steel cooking tools

sainsburys.co.uk, £4 each

You need the tools for cooking outdoors and this brush, fork and turner are simple, stylish but won’t break the bank. Tongs are also available.

Roaster barbecue

worldstores.co.uk, £319

This two-burner gas barbecue has a curved hood, enabling you to roast meat, and the porcelain-coated grill and griddle make for optimal cooking conditions.

Morsø Forno outdoor oven

morsoliving.co.uk, £1,428

This looks good, will warm a cool evening and also lets you cook pizzas and crusty bread in style. Add a grill and you can also griddle meat.

 

Lighting:

Tulip light

gardenbeet.com, £683

Add a touch of the surreal to your night-time garden with this oversize, freestanding light that is 150cm tall. Made of polyethylene, it is available in six colours.

Solar light jar

johnlewis.com, £7

This glass lamp has an integrated LED light and solar panel that charges during the day then emits a soft glow at night. It works well dotted in groups around the garden.

Rattan lantern

cargohomeshop.com, £24

This structured round rattan lantern with rope handle has a beachside feel to its design and would work well in a contemporary garden or on a balcony or patio.

Lantern string

sainsburys.co.uk, £15

A string of lights brightens up an outdoor space. If twinkly and colourful isn’t your thing, then this minimalist, Japanese inspired string of mini-lanterns might be for you.

Solvinden solar-powered lights

ikea.com, £20

Solar-powered lights are great in a garden. These colourful table lamps with a solar panel will emit four hours of light when fully charged.

 

Entertaining:

Ice cream sundae cones

marksandspencer.com, £9.50 for four

Summer isn’t summer without ice creams and this set of four waffle-shaped sundae glasses in red, blue, green and yellow acrylic are a stylish way to enjoy an icy treat.

Leaf salad bowl

marksandspencer.com, £7.50

Made of acrylic, this bowl is the natural choice for outdoor entertaining. It will stand the wear and tear of picnicking but, unlike some acrylic designs, it doesn’t sacrifice style for durability.

Vario plates

conranshop.co.uk, £12.95 each

It can be difficult to find crockery that brightens a garden table and yet holds its own in the style stakes. These large dining plates, available in lemon, mandarin and blue, manage to do both.

Stamp travel cutlery

conranshop.co.uk, £24.95

This Danish-designed, Italian-made set of travel cutlery is stylish enough to use on even the most upmarket of picnics, yet it’s also seriously  functional: lightweight, stackable and compact.

Springkorn rug

ikea.com, £35 each

Add a jolt of colour to your outdoor entertaining with these bright and cheerful outdoor rugs available in a selection of colours. Made of a water-resistant polypropylene, they are also easy to clean.

Stacking wine glasses

johnlewis.com, £8 for four

Brightly coloured, lightweight and made of durable and hard-wearing plastic, these wine glasses are great for outdoor entertaining and are easy to stack and store.

Drinks bucket

sainsburys.co.uk, £10

If you run out of cold drinks, the quickest way to chill one is to add a handful of table salt to a mixture of half ice, half water, then submerge drinks in the salted iced water.

Nkuku jug

liberty.co.uk, £35

Made of lightweight yet durable stainless steel, this jug will look equally good acting as a vase for a summer bouquet or as a serving pitcher for Pimms, water or iced tea.

Blooma Aland drinks trolley

diy.com, £49

Channel your inner 1970s hostess-with-the-mostest vibe with this trolley, which includes a tray, built-in bottle store and bottle opener.

Tex Mix outdoor cushion

isme.com, £15

Ikat styling is right on trend this season and this bold pink, turquoise and orange cushion will brighten up a garden bench or chair no end.

 

Furniture:

Egg hanging chair

conranshop.co.uk, £1,995

Created by Danish designer Nanna Ditzel, the Egg hanging chair has become a classic. Often imitated, never bettered, it’s an investment piece that you’ll love for years.

Spun stool

conranshop.co.uk, £360

The Spun stool is sculpturally beautiful even when not in use. Made of moulded polyethylene, it’s suitable for outdoor use but will add a touch of whimsy inside, too.

VÅGÖ easy chair

ikea.com, £25

This colourful Ikea outdoor chair is great value and has been designed with attention to detail: the polypropylene plastic is UV-stabilized, fade-resistant and easy to clean.

Bilbao rocking chair

johnlewis.com, £179

There’s something infinitely soothing about a rocking chair. Add in some summer sunshine and a peaceful garden and you have a guaranteed stress reliever.

Axminster slate top table

slatetoptables.com, £1,295

These are hand-made in Devon by expert cabinet makers and last a lifetime.  The slate top is durable and easy to care for.

Homestead outdoor dining set

johnlewis.com, £679

We like the contemporary style and clean lines of this outdoor dining set. The FSC certified teak will weather well and the bench and table combo are perfect for casual entertaining.

Navajo armchair and footstool

johnlewis.com, £428

This chair has a simple, contemporary design and  its back slings are made  from spun polyester that  feels like cotton while being completely shower-proof.

Floating bench

liberty.co.uk (not available online), £2,995

This an investment in a stunning contemporary design piece. The lighter back appears to float above the darker bench seat – a design that will work in traditional and more modern gardens.

Rosso table

habitat.co.uk, £50

Perfect for a small balcony or patio, this metal folding table – a simple design in a pretty colour – co-ordinates well with the retailer’s beech and steel Parc chairs. Folds flat when not in use.

Japan dining chair

gomodern.co.uk, £330

The clever laser-cut flower patterns on the back and seat of these chairs throw beautiful shadows in sunlight. Made of epoxy lacquered stainless steel, these are hardy, resilient chairs available with cushions.

AreaT table

calligaris.co.uk, £384

Compact and cool, this round metal table is a great choice for a patio or a balcony. It will fit comfortably in the smallest of spaces and we like its  distinctively shaped legs.

Blooma Moretta armchair

diy.com, £60

Bright colours are big in outdoor furniture this year and this woven set in lime green with a hint of vintage styling about it is right on trend.

Portofino swivel chair

bhsfurniture.co.uk, £399

This black rattan swivel chair channels a Balearic club vibe. Closer to home, it would work well on a deck or roof terrace; perfect for somewhere to lay back with a summer drink.

Capri lounge set

bhsfurniture.co.uk, £899

If you like a sophisticated contemporary vibe this grey rattan set, which includes two armchairs, a sofa and coffee table, is a good choice for outdoor entertaining.

M bench & table

jennifernewman.com,  M bench, £600; table, £1,400,

Fast-growing and easy to replenish, bamboo is an eco-friendly material that looks great too, here resembling a dark hardwood.

 

Wildlife:

Pear peanut feeder

diy.com, £5.98

This pear-shaped peanut feeder will brighten up a garden or patio. Fill it with peanuts or other feed and it will also keep birds and squirrels fed and happy.

Bee house

wildandwolf.com, £16

Give bees a resting place and safe haven with this little yellow bee house. Site it in a sunny south-facing position for best effect to keep these essential creatures happy.

Insect hotel

roullierwhite.com, £25

Gardens need insects of every type to thrive. This appealing product will encourage a wide selection of beasts into your garden to breathe new life into your planting schemes.

Club house birdhouse

petspyjamas.com, £109.99

If bling is your thing or you just fancy going one up on the neighbours, we recommend this birdhouse. This version is modelled on a Southern US Plantation house.

Wasp Trap

sciencemuseumshop.co.uk, £15

If you don’t want wasps having a place in your garden then this is worth a look. Simply fill the base with a few drops of a sugary liquid and let the trap do its work.

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