Winter may be on its way, but that’s no reason to lock yourself away indoors. You should be able to enjoy your garden all year round. Here are few ways that you can encourage you and your family to get out in the garden during the winter months.
Turn up the heat
The main reason no-one wants to venture outside in winter is because it’s too cold. However, a patio heater or a chiminea could help to provide some heat. Patio heaters will cost more to buy and run, although you can get solar powered ones. They can be excellent for heating up and outdoor space in the winter. Chimineas are cheaper and rely on burning wood. They might not provide as much heat but could still be a solution.
Set up an awning
If you’ve got a patio or decked area, it could be worth putting up some kind of shelter to protect from the rain. These could be something temporary like a gazebo or an umbrella. Alternatively, you may want consider more permanent canopy options such as patio roofs. Permanent roofs may be able to provide shelter from the sun in the heat of summer on top of shelter from the rain.
Add some light on the subject
In winter, the evenings get darker more quickly. Installing some exterior lighting could be handy. Nowadays, you don’t have to invest in mains lighting – solar lighting won’t require you to run cable outside and is far more cost-efficient. You can also light up outside with candles.
Start growing winter produce
Need an activity to get you outside in the winter? Why not try some organic farming? You can grow many vegetables in the winter including parsnips, onions, garlic and leaks. Why wait until spring?
Have a winter BBQ
You could also consider having a winter barbecue. It’s not the done thing to do but it’s perfectly possible and standing over the barbecue will provide enough warmth. Many winter foods taste great when grilled over a barbecue. Leg of lamb for example can taste delicious seared with some black pepper, sea salt and lemon. You could even grill some sausages and burgers for something a little hearty. Both gas and coal barbecues are effective solutions, but expect it to take a little longer to warm up (you may want a canopy above in case it rains).
Encourage winter wildlife
The winter is also a great time to see some new exciting wildlife. Why not put up a bird-feeder in your garden to help attract robins and chiffchaffs? Many animals will want to hibernate in the winter – woodpiles can be great places for them to nest so be careful when disturbing these. If you’ve got a pond, make sure that it doesn’t freeze over as this could kill off any fish in it. Don’t break the ice by smashing it as this could cause harmful shockwaves that harm the fish. Instead, pour some boiling water on an area of the frozen pond.