There’s nothing quite like wrapping up warm in the winter months. In the UK this is exactly what we are trained to do; the outdoor furniture gets packed up, the slow cooker gets dusted off and the heating comes on, but while we are so used to staying indoors, this year we may have to get our acts together and try something a little different.
National lockdowns and no social gatherings mean that we will be seeing more of our homes than we might like at the moment, so now is a good a time as any to embrace the outdoor spaces we have. It doesn’t matter how big or small an area you have, you can always find a way to style it up and make it a space that you long to spend time in, even in the colder months. To give you some inspiration we’ve listed below seven ways in which you can make the best of your outdoor space this winter.
Get warm with a patio heater
Admittedly, the main reason we head indoors is because the temperature drops to a number on the thermometer that’s less than comfortable. However, this issue can be adequately fixed with a little outdoor heating to warm the bones. Susan Robinson’s guide to the best patio heaters provides a comprehensive guide to the range of heater you can opt for, whether you want something powered by gas, electric or liquid propane; wall-mounted, tall or at table height and compact or not, she has you covered.
Get styling with some cold weather furniture and accessories
Style up your space and make it cosy in a few simple ways. It really doesn’t matter if you just have a balcony or a small courtyard area, just grab a bistro set (ideally made from rain proof materials), hang up some fairy lights to create a cosy atmosphere and make sure you have some comfy cushions and warm blankets to hand. Awning or a hardy parasol are also handy buys as is a waterproof cover for your furniture and outdoor storage for your softer items for when it does rain.
Get active with some outdoor gym equipment
Though it may feel like the hours of sunlight are minimal and this can feel a tad disheartening, the best way to make the most of what is there and lift your spirits is by getting out and getting active. There are plenty of ways to get some garden exercise in with smaller equipment such as weights, a kettlebell, skipping rope and hula hoop, which can be easily stored away and provide a variety of exercises that work the whole body.
Get relaxing with a hot tub
If you have a hot tub, now is the perfect time to get outside and have a soak. Cooler nights with some atmospheric lighting would make for a pleasing way to spend an evening, and we’re sure many would agree. Accompany your bubbles with some Champagne and you’ll feel as though you’ve been transported to a luxury hotel in minutes, and if you have a pool, a night swim would make for a relaxing and peaceful end to the day.
Get eating with your barbecue or pizza oven
With a huge selection of meaty, meat-free, sides and desserts to whip up, there’s no reason to cover up your barbecue or pizza oven for the cold seasons. Take the fun outside and enjoy some tasty treats with the family, and the best part is that cooking times are so short so you can warm up with your toasty and delicious food in minutes.
Get some adequate lighting
The dark nights are here and you don’t want to limit yourself at all so make sure you have adequate lighting for your garden or balcony so that you can cosy up next to your heater and enjoy the evening outdoors. Alternatively, you can enjoy the night sky as it is, just grab yourself a telescope and get stargazing.
You don’t have to save your gardening until spring, in fact, if you want some of those plants looking sharp and blooming next year then now is the time to get pruning and planting. Perennials enjoy a prune in autumn and spring, while tulips are best planted now for early colour next year. It’s also a good time to have a tidy up in general and shelter any plants that will suffer too much in extreme weather.