People spend a lot of time choosing the right couch and end tables for their living room but might buy the first wooden bench they see to place in their landscape. To get the most from your landscape furniture, it should be chosen and placed with the same intent and consideration as if you were adding an ornamental tree to your yard.

Furniture in the garden can serve many purposes. It is a place to sit and enjoy the outdoors while reading a book. It can be a place to have a nice meal or play with your grandchildren. Furniture can provide a place to rest while you are hard at work with your plants.

However, whatever the practical, utilitarian purpose the furniture in your garden, it must also fulfill a design purpose too. The same design criteria used to determine how to best display your plants should be applied to the placement and style of your garden furniture. A very formal bench in an informal garden will stand out like a sore thumb.

The vast majority of what falls into the category of garden furniture includes a wide array of benches, chairs, stools and tables. As with household furniture, these all come in a large number of styles and are made of many different materials.

We have tried to make some sort of order out of this subject by grouping furniture items by the materials used in their construction as follows:

  • Wood - Since early times, outdoor furniture has been made of wood. At first, people used local species such as cedar, oak and maple but in recent (centuries?) we are also using more exotic wood such as mahogany. We have gathered images of dozens of types of wooden furniture during our travels to private and public gardens.
     

  • Metal - Perhaps the most commonly used metal associated with garden furniture is wrought iron. This beautiful metal has been used for decorative fences and delicate furniture in many parts of the world. Other metal furniture is being made of such materials as steel and aluminum.
     

  • Stone - Hand carved pieces of granite or other stone have long appeared in classic gardens of Europe and elsewhere. More recent stone furniture may also be made of composite materials or of caste cement.
     

  • Synthetic Materials - With the advent of fiberglass and plastics, the world of outdoor furniture has expanded greatly. Furniture made for synthetic processes run the gamut of styles and taste.

Visit our image galleries for pictures of a wide array of different hardscape features for the landscape. Our intent is to give you some ideas about the variety of options available in each of the categories we cover. Some are the standard type while others may be unique or unusual. There will be features you might want to copy and others that you may want to avoid. Good luck!

Mr. PGC

 

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