Blog - Cottage Culture


8 Helpful Tips for Reducing Patio Clutter

8 Helpful Tips for Reducing Patio Clutter 

Have you ever felt that clutter around your office makes it difficult to work? Or do you find it challenging to function in your kitchen when your space is untidy? Do you have trouble unwinding when your living room has toys strewn about? If so, you are like most people!

Scientifically speaking, it can be difficult for your brain to feel at ease when there is visible clutter or chaos in your surroundings. You likely feel a significant difference in your level of contentment when your home is clean versus when it is in disarray, and your outdoor living space is no different.


Your patio, deck, or balcony should be a tranquil outdoor living area where you can relax, unwind, entertain, and spend quality time with your loved ones. Therefore, it should feel functional, neat, and tidy.


Below, we share tips on reducing patio clutter to make your space a place you, your family, and your guests love to be. We talk about how to use your space and offer steps you can take to work through your clutter and find ideal storage solutions. We also offer insight into creating a sustainable system to manage messes.


Read on to learn more!


Tip 1: Consider How You Use Your


Before you make any decisions about how to declutter your outdoor living area, you should consider your unique space and decide how you want to use it going forward. Establishing your priorities will help you decide later about what to keep, purge, store, upgrade, or rearrange.


Your patio should suit your lifestyle and be arranged and organized in a way that works best for you currently. This may mean pivoting from what worked previously, and it will likely continue to evolve over time. Therefore, if your patio no longer feels comfortable or relaxing, always start by evaluating if your setup is serving your current needs or if it needs an upgrade.


For example, your old partying hotspot may predominantly become an outdoor play space after you have children. Or perhaps your friend group or family has grown over the years as people got married and had their own children, creating a need for more seating. Alternatively, you may be a recent empty nester or retiree wishing to add a hot tub or create a more luxurious lounge space.


Once you have a clear idea of how you plan to use your patio this season, you can start implementing some of our next tips! 


Tip 2: Evaluate the Largest Items First 

When decluttering, it can be easy to get overwhelmed by the little things. That is why we recommend looking at the biggest items first. Large items like your patio sectional, sofas, 

chairs, dining furniture, patio swings, loungers, and firepit tend to take up the most space. It is also typically easy to identify if they are dated, worn, rusted, or simply just in the way.  

If you determine that an item is underutilized or dated but still in decent shape, plan to sell, donate, or gift it to a new home. If it is broken or no longer usable, leave it at the curb or take it to the dump (depending on your local waste collection rules).


If you decide to replace your large items, opt for high-quality patio furniture and décor that will last for many years to come. Come in and speak with a patio furniture expert at Cottage Culture.


Tip 3: Inventory Your Small Items 

Often, the little items or functional, everyday tools create a feeling of clutter. They accumulate over time and can make tidying up feel overwhelming. It is best to dedicate blocks of time to sifting through smaller items. Then, if you still need, want, and use the item – keep it! If not, toss it, sell it, or donate it to a good cause.


Purging can be tricky, so identifying broken toys, old garden décor, unused gardening tools, duplicate kitchen utensils, or extra pillows and cushions is a great place to start. From there, you can further decide what needs to be readily accessible still and what could realistically be stored inside or put in a bin in the shed or garage.

Tip 4: Utilize Patio Storage Solutions 

Once you have evaluated your space and purged unwanted items, you can start planning how to elegantly display or store things that used to create a feeling of clutter. For example, some items can go inside patio storage boxes, and others may be tucked away in stylish patio accessories like baskets.


If you decide you would like to add a storage box to your patio, we love the Gaster Storage Box in white or anthracite or the Grasse Cushion Box in black or white. Both options allow you to store cushions, toys, towels, tools, or anything else you want to keep handy but out of sight.


Tip 5: Opt for Multi-Function Patio


If your space is small or you would like to reduce the amount of patio furniture you have, consider opting for multi-function patio furniture. Look for sofas, sectionals, or stools that provide hidden storage options or that can serve more than one purpose.


For example, add a cushion to the top of your storage box to create extra seating or turn your fire pit into a coffee table with the 24-inch Modern Cube Steel Table Top. You can also find planters that double as rain barrels.


Opting for these types of creative storage solutions is a great way to store your items without sacrificing style. They also help you keep frequently used items within reach.  

Tip 6: Select Complementing Patio Furniture and Décor

While we are clearly big fans of reducing the amount of unneeded stuff lying around, we also know that sometimes the problem isn’t the number of things at all. Sometimes, the issue is that your patio furniture simply does not fit your space.


For example, your outdoor furniture and décor may be too large or have patterns that detract from the overall aesthetic of your patio space. Or perhaps the colours of some selections clash with your home’s exterior, creating visual chaos.


Ideally, you want to have patio furniture and décor that complements each other and creates the vibe you are going for in your backyard. Therefore, if something feels off, consider upgrading your patio furniture, re-evaluating cushion colours or patterns, or replacing décor that is throwing everything off. 


Tip 7: Utilize Your Garden Shed or Garage 

While working on decluttering and organizing your outdoor living space, do not forget to utilize your garden shed or garage fully. Likely, not all of your patio items actually need to be on, well, your patio and can instead go into storage somewhere else on your property.

Perhaps you only need to have your extra loungers out when your grandkids come over for a swim. Or maybe you only use your firepit or larger garden tools once a month. In those cases, consider if those items can go in your garden shed or garage instead.  


Consider utilizing shelving and bins to give everything a neat and organized home. Add labels to your bins so you never need to dig around too much to find what you are looking for. Also, ensure you are making use of all the vertical and rafter space. These areas are often underutilized but can significantly increase your storage options.


While there may be a significant time commitment when you first start your decluttering journey, it will be worth it when you know that everything has a dedicated space. 


Tip 8: Build Your Organization System 

Keeping your space tidy is easier when you have a system that supports your success. For that reason, it is recommended that you think through what organization systems will be most sustainable and functional for you.


Can you keep a bin nearby to create a natural spot for your kids or grandkids to drop their toys into at the end of the day? Could a family conversation about everyone pitching in to help make a difference? Is it possible for you to plan to go through bins once a season to keep on top of regular purging?


Regardless of what works best for you and your family, finding a system that you can stick with can make everything feel more manageable.

Get Organized with Cottage Culture 

Are you ready to organize and tidy your patio, deck, or balcony? Cottage Culture is here to help! We offer high-quality patio furniture to suit your family’s needs.


Browse our online patio furniture collection or visit our showroom in the beautiful community of Hensall, Ontario to see what we have in stock. Our professional and enthusiastic staff are ready to help you select patio furniture that will help you keep your outdoor living space neat and tidy. In addition, we offer outdoor furniture and décor delivery and installation services.


Are you looking for inspiration? Follow us on Facebook or Instagram, 

Angela Roth at 3:19 PM
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How to choose an Outdoor Fire pit for your space


Firepits add warmth and ambiance to your yard, deck, or patio and can significantly elevate your outdoor living space. Firepits are a backyard favourite because they create a cozy spot for gathering with your friends, making memories with family, and sitting with your partner after a long week at work.


For some, a fire pit inspires a grilling menu for special occasions or a myraid of creative s'more recipes. And other's its about being mesmerized by flames and burning embers.


Backyard fire pits are available in an abundant variety of styles to suit your lifestyle. You can also create your own design using materials available at your local landscape supply store. What works best will depend on your style preferences, unique space, and municipal rules about backyard firepits.


Below, we cover the basics of fire pits, outdoor fireplaces, fire bowls, and tabletop firepits for your patio or deck. We also provide tips throughout and offer ideas on firepit solutions for small spaces.


Read on to learn more about choosing an outdoor fire pit for your space!


Evaluate Your Space 


Every outdoor living area is unique, so the first step in choosing a firepit is evaluating your space. The amount of space you can work with and the potential locations of your firepit may significantly impact which style you choose.


Firepits are quite obviously hot and flaming, so you must be mindful of what is beneath and surrounding your pit. For example, a large, open-top stone firepit will not work on a wooden deck and may not be ideal on a stone patio close to your house or fence. Or you may have a smaller space where you will need to find creative, compact, or multi-purpose solutions that keep your deck functional, comfortable, and safe.  


Take a quick walk through your yard or around your outdoor space and consider where you would place your firepit once you purchase it. Look for hazards, consider potential placements, and always keep safety and practicality in mind.


Cottage Culture can help advise you of any special considerations for your patio furniture. How far should your new rattan sofa be kept from the firepit? Are your cushions flame retardant? Speak with one of our knowledgeable reps today.


Consider Your Family’s Needs

There is no "one-size-fits-all" firepit, so you will need to consider what you want and need in your backyard fire feature. Identifying what is most important to you and the people who will be using the firepit can help you narrow down what to shop for.

  • Do you love to roast marshmallows or make spider dogs together as a family?
  • Do you also use your firepit to burn backyard brush?
  • Would you prefer to have a more compact or enclosed fire feature?
  • Will your firepit be stand-alone, or will it be incorporated into other elements such as a dining table or coffee table?
  • Do you want to move and clean your fire pit easily?
  • Will your fire pit stay outdoors all year long?
  • Do you need a foot rest to warm feet on cool nights?

Ask yourself those questions to determine which qualities you need in your outdoor fire feature.

Check Your Municipal By-Laws 


Each municipality will have by-laws on cooking, recreational, and open-air fires. These by-laws will also include regulations about how far away your fire pit needs to be from other structures or combustible materials. In addition, they will indicate what types of materials you can burn in your backyard if any.


Be sure to check your local by-laws before purchasing or constructing your fire pit. This quick – but important – step can save you time, money, and hassle in the long run and keep you out of trouble with your neighbours and your municipal officials.


If you are not permitted to burn wood or fire logs in your town or city, check to see if propane outdoor fireplaces, pits, and bowls are allowed.


Decide on a Style 


Once you have considered your outdoor living space, the needs of your family, and the rules around firepits in your town/city, you are ready to start shopping! Browsing styles is the most fun part of the process because there are so many different designs to choose from.

Common styles include:

  • Free-standing fire pits, fireplaces, and fire bowls
  • Built-in fireplaces
  • Firepit kits
  • Tabletop fire features

We explain each firepit style in a bit more detail below.


Free-standing Fire Pits, Places, and Bowls


Free-standing fire pits, fireplaces, and fire bowls are exactly what they sound like – stand-alone features. They typically have short, sturdy legs to keep them off the ground. They can be open at the top or be mostly enclosed. Many will offer spark screens and covers and they can come in interesting shapes and sizes to suit various spaces.


These options are perfect for smaller fires that you wish to contain. They are also great if you like to have larger gatherings and want to ensure all your guests have a seat around the fire. Free-standing options are easy to move and easier to clean as well. In addition, they can be transferred to your shed or garage for winter storage.


If this style is a fit for you, consider the 24-inch Modern Cube Fire Pit from Cottage Culture! You may also love the 3ft Polygon Fire Bowl , 3" Cottager Fire  Pit or the 4ft Pyramid Outdoor Fireplace!


Built-in Fireplaces


Built-in fireplaces are what you would typically see indoors – except they are just outside. Built-in options speak to the current trend of extending our indoors spaces or “outdoor homing” by creating the feeling of an outdoor living room.  These elevate any outdoor living space and are an elegant solution for adding ambiance and comfort.


Outdoor built-in fireplaces will be more costly to design and install, but they are a timeless and very safe feature. However, it is important to consider that full fireplaces will require more space and may not suit the aesthetic of every yard, patio, or deck. 


Large bulky patio furniture is a thing of the past, new modern designs can be just as functional without taking up so much space. Modular furniture lines give you the option of changing your layout to suit the occasion or special changes.  Speak with our reps to see if we can downsize or rearrange your furniture to make more space for a built-in fireplace.


Firepit Kits and In-ground Firepits


If you want a larger firepit and would like to roll up your sleeves to install it, a firepit kit would be an excellent option for you. Firepit kits typically come with stone and a fire pit ring insert, giving you an easy DIY solution for your outdoor space.


You can also build an in-ground fire pit using materials from your local landscape supply or home improvement store. If you seek a more permanent or elaborate custom firepit style, landscapers and construction companies may also offer firepit design and installation services.


Firepits for Small Spaces 


If you love firepits but have a small yard, or patio, you can still add a fire feature to your space. You will just need to be a bit creative and select firepits for small spaces rather than opting for large fireplaces or permanent firepit installations. You can also find firepits that serve more than one purpose if you are limited on square footage or prefer minimalist backyard design. 


Tabletop Fire Features


Tabletop fire features sit within or on top of your patio table. This option is suitable if you want a propane firepit that you and your guests can enjoy while sipping wine and eating dinner. In addition, tabletop fire pits are a great solution if you do not want to burn wood and would prefer to have propane as your fuel source.


Steel Tabletops for Firepits


Some free-standing fire pits and bowls can also double as a patio table. Choose a wood-burning fire pit or a modern propane fire bowl and add a steel tabletop. The steel tabletop for your firepit or bowl will sit on top of your fire feature when it is not in use keeping the wood dry and giving you more serving space. Start your evening enjoying cocktails and appetizers, then remove the tabletop and roast marshmallows on the fire. This option gives you the best of both worlds and is perfect for small spaces.


We love the 24-inch Modern Cube Steel Table Top and the 3ft Polygon Fire Bowl Steel Table Top!



There are firepits for every backyard, and you will not have any trouble finding a robust selection of options. Choose to purchase one that is ready to use, build one yourself, or hire a professional to help design and install a more permanent solution.


Be sure to evaluate your space, consider your family's needs, check with your local burning by-laws, and shop around for firepit styles that suit your style and space.


Consider free-standing firepits and bowls, built-in fireplaces, in-ground firepits, and tabletop fire features. There is no shortage of firepit styles and designs to choose from!

If your space is smaller, you do not have to miss out on adding stunning firepits and bowls to your yard, patio, or balcony. Opt for multi-purpose pits with steel table tops to add both a table and a fire pit to your outdoor living area.


Regardless of which firepit option you choose, you'll never regret creating a stylish, warm, and ambient space to make memories with your loved ones!


Shop for Firepits with Cottage Culture 


If you are ready to start shopping for the best fire pit or feature for your backyard, patio, deck, or balcony, consider working with Cottage Culture! We are proud to be a family-owned and operated patio furniture retailer in Canada. We offer a large selection of outdoor furniture and accessories that exude comfort, quality, and character.


Browse our online patio furniture collection or visit our showroom in beautiful Hensall, Ontario. Our dedicated outdoor furniture experts are ready to help you design your space and select a firepit that works best for you and your family. In addition, we offer patio furniture delivery and installation services. Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for you to love your outdoor oasis.  


Are you looking for backyard inspiration or firepit ideas? Follow us on Facebook and Instagram! 



Angela Roth at 4:09 PM
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Bringing Outdoor furniture from a well-established Nordic company to a new Canadian Venture.

Cottage Culture opened its doors during Covid in July 2021, as a division of parent company Iceculture Inc, which created ice sculptures for the event and hospitality markets for over 30 years.  Cottage Culture curated a line of products from Brafab, one of the leading outdoor furniture companies in northern Europe.  Their climate challenges are similar and their Scandinavian design appealed to our own tastes, which is important if you intend to offer a product that you believe in.

We wanted to partner with a company that had a solid history and we want to share this history with our customers.  Cottage Culture is a new venture but our partners have given us a depth of knowledge that is as reliable as it is exciting.  We want to share this history with experts from several  of Brafab’s inspirational newsletters entitled “Brafab Moments”.



Brafab – a longstanding history of quality design and thoughtful craftsmanship 

Brafab is one of the biggest outdoor furniture suppliers in the Nordic region with more than 90 years of experience located minutes from their founder’s first location in Norra Ossjo Sweden. Their popularity extends all over Europe, as they carry a variety of outdoor furniture lines representing many different tastes and styles. 


“Our company is characterized by the spirit of family, and we care about all of our stakeholders; customers, suppliers , employees and the expert retailers.  Over the years we have cultivated an entrepreneurial belief that anything is possible, and that has driven us and our evolution” – Ida Hedunger, Marketing Manager, Brafab.


Brafab began as a small, family-owned company in the 1930’s with Bror Karlsson, the founder, travelling farm-to-farm in the area surrounding Norra Ossjo, Halland, Sweden selling his hand made wares. He was born only a few hundred metres from Brafab’s current headquarters. At that time, this area was dotted with small farms that had a limited means of subsistence for much of the year.  During the summer months residents were able to work at the larger farms a few kilometers away.  In winter they turned their attention to making potato baskets, wooden spoons, and ladders. 


Bror Karlsson was a popular man and an enterprising entrepreneur. He transported the baskets and garden furniture around the countryside via horse and buggy to sell the products to farms in the region surrounding Norra Ossjo, Halland.  Over the years the family-owned business grew and today Brafab is one of northern Europe’s leading outdoor furniture companies.


Honouring Historical Roots 


Rolf Brorsson, Bror’s son, is still partly active in the company.  “We helped make the products from a young age, especially me. I would often sit and weave baskets with my father.  The garden furniture at the time – a sofa, table and two chairs” – was called Gammaldags and it’s still part of Brafab’s product range.


The first time Rolf joined his father to sell their wares by horse and buggy, he was 15.  A few years later, he bought his first truck, which he used to try his luck at various local markets.  “The first time was a raining Wednesday, I recall, and I didn’t sell much.  I headed out into the countryside to try to make a little more money before taking out my sleeping bag, making some coffee on the kerosene stove and falling asleep between the hand brake and gear stick” reminisced Rolf.


A Growing Demand for Garden Furniture 


Brafab expanded the wooden furniture offering in the 1960’s to include modern, durable steel furniture.  They also enhanced the comfort with softer seats made of woven plastic strips.  From the very beginning, the combination of comfort, design and practicality has been at the foundation of Brafab.


In the 1990s the company further expanded their product lines and the materials used to include aluminum, teak, synthetic rattan, stainless steel and more.  Building personal relationships with suppliers was and still is of great importance to Brafab. 


The company’s Purchasing and Product Development representatives travel regularly to visit suppliers to ensure that quality is maintained in each of their products.  Nothing replaces eye-to-eye contact and a physical handshake.  These are important for building solid personal relationships. “You can never really get to know people from a distance. For the most part we know our retailers and suppliers personally, which has been one of the cornerstones of our success.” -Rolf Inge Sivald Brorsson, Director Brafab.


The company continues to grow and evolve and its genuine love for quality furniture is at the centre of the company’s development.  When it comes to design, each detail is carefully considered and from the beginning excellent comfort has been Brafab’s hallmark.  The philosophy is simple: “why sit in an uncomfortable chair?”.  This is the mindset that has made Brafab renown for comfort.


The furniture is known in particular for its excellent comfort, which has been a focal point for decades.  Product Manger, Marie Bergqvist continuously develops new furniture in collaboration with the product development team. 


Brafab today



Presently Brafab employs around fifty people in Sweden and Asia, and is responsible for curating a diverse line of outdoor furniture products from their many suppliers worldwide. “Thinking big , thinking innovatively and cultivating a local mindset towards personal relationships and authenticity are part of our DNA and always have been.  Our headquarters in Norra Ossjo are just a few hundred meters from the site where our company founder was born.


Our legacy is not only a part of the company’s heart and soul; it is also the reason why we are who we are today. From the small-scale, hand-crafted production in the 1930s, we have grown into a well-established brand with sales in and beyond Europe. With our strong spirit of service and belief in the importance of personal relationships with our customers, suppliers and retailers, we are leading our business towards a future in which outdoor furniture has ever-increasing importance in our homes. – Brafab Thinking Outside 2022.


“To ensure high quality at every level, with creative solutions and innovative materials, Brafab invests in, thorough behind-the-scenes work takes place with a focus on the details” Johanna Lagerfors.


Cottage Culture and Brafab 


Cottage Culture is proud to be the first store in North America inventorying a wide range of  Brafab products. Cottage Culture is located in Hensall, Ontario in picturesque Huron County which boasts some of the most beautiful countryside and lakefront properties that Ontario has to offer.  Family owned and operated Cottage Culture shares the same values and beliefs as Brafab.


We pride ourselves on our exceptional customer service and attention to detail.  Cottage Culture is dedicated to providing high quality outdoor furniture with the individual attention and care that you would expect from a small business.  Our showroom showcases more than 25 lines of outdoor furniture from Brafab.  The lines have been hand-picked to span both a wide range of relaxing and entertaining styles as well materials constructed for the out of doors. 


We’ve concentrated on the items from Brafab’s offering that we feel offer something new to the Canadian market.  We aren’t trying to compete with what is already here,  Scandinavian design is both functional and elegant and therefore creates a fabulous base canvas for someone trying to enhance their outdoor space. Cottage Culture’s showroom includes a selection of outdoor dining tables, armchairs, occasional chairs, sofas and modular lounge seating groups, many of which look as stunning indoors as they do out.

We created Cottage Culture to provide something different; to be a source of unique, European designs that are classic enough to provide canvas for personal expression and that can be enjoyed this summer season. – Heidi Bayley, president Cottage Culture.


Make the most of every moment

When you own outdoor furniture from Brafab, you know your’e getting carefully crafted furniture with sturdy construction, tasteful design and reliable materials.  We recognize how important it is to be able to take a seat and try our furniture before you make a purchase.  Is it comfortable, does your preferred chair fit under the table? Does the colour of a lounger match the furniture you already own?


We also appreciate that it can be nice to consider a purchase in the peace and quiet of your own home.  You can do just that by visiting, where you will find information and pricing.  In addition is a great source of inspiration and items outside the Cottage Culture inventory that can be special ordered.


Major Changes are underway 


As Johanna Lagerfors, outlines in “Making a Brafab product – from idea to finished furniture” in Brafab Moments,  Brafab’s work process is largely based on  the concept of outdoor homing; the trend of brining the indoors out, and the outdoors in.  The line bewtewen our indoor and outdoor lives has become increasingly blurred in recent years.  Interior design moves that were unthinkable just a few years ago – like putting a carpet under the patio dining table – are now a popular way to create a relaxed feel. Modern outdoor settings often contain multiple spaces, each serving a different purpose.


To satisfy the modern need for flexibility, many of Brafab’s furniture choices are adaptable, list nesting tables that can be used as needed.  “It is also common to blend styles today.  One area might be more romantic, while an outdoor spa or lounge area might have a cooler look.  Many people are also skipping complete sets in favour of pairing a sofa from one set with a table from another” says Marketing Manager, Marie Bergqvist.


Creating New Outdoor Furniture Designs 


Marie Bergqvist is product manager on the team that develops new outdoor furniture for Brafab.  Comfort, attractive design and long-term sustainability are important components.


Brafabs Product Development cycle lasts for about a year, but ideas for each collection are already considered well before then.  The initial phase is guided by creativity and design.  Meticulous care goes into choosing proportions and precise angles of the seats, backrests and armrest. 


At Cottage Culture, we aim to guide each customer through the many seating options offered in our showroom.  There is a large variety of cushion comforts, seat heights and depths as well as materials and no two people are alike.  There are chairs that I find perfect for myself and the next customer finds the experience much different” says Angela Roth, Assistant Manager of Cottage Culture.  “Equally each family uses their space differently, whether it be private lounging, lingering dinners or functional meal time for lots of children.  We recognize that finding the right combination of these factors is important for every family.”


Bringing Brafab to Canada 

Logistics in 2022 is challenging, shipping containers are scarce and rates are ever changing.  Cottage Culture benefits from Brafab’s thoughtful consideration of the construction of their designs. “That’s one of the factors for success at Brafab”, explains Marie. “Since most of our products are produced far away from Sweden, we have to consider clever, sustainable construction solutions for the sake of both the environment and shipping costs.”


Cottage Culture has leaned on Brafab’s experienced product development team by trusting their insight on combining upcoming trends with tasteful aesthetics to provide classic but unique lines of furniture. 


These pieces are ready for purchase right away as Cottage Culture has a warehouse on-site.  This eliminates a lot of frustration for customers who want to enjoy the short summer season.  There aren’t many Canadians who don’t appreciate our four season climate but none of us want to wait around for furniture to enjoy the outdoor season when it finally arrives.  Cottage Culture combines availability with style so that as we elevate our outdoor spaces, we can do it thoughtfully.


Visit to review our selection of Brafab outdoor furniture or visit our showroom to take a seat located at 148 King Street, Hensall, On N0M 1X0.



Angela Roth at 12:21 PM
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Deck gardening tips for beginners

Gardening can be a rewarding and relaxing activity that serves as a quiet retreat or a fun, family-friendly activity at home. Gardening also enhances any outdoor living space by adding colour, privacy, shade, and even edible plants. Adding a garden to your deck can also be incredibly helpful for pollinators, especially if you live in an urban area.

For many people, there is tremendous joy in tending to a fragile seedling or plant and watching it grow throughout the season. However, getting started as a beginner can be intimidating, and many people worry they do not have enough space to have a thriving garden.

The good news is that deck gardens are possible even if you have a small space, an awkward layout, or minimal sunlight throughout the day. There are unlimited options for flowers, plants, fruits, and vegetables that will do well in different growing conditions. You will also find an abundance of stylish pots and planters to accommodate your style, budget, and growing needs.

Below, we provide some deck gardening tips for beginners so you can start thinking through the steps for planning, planting, maintaining, and enjoying your container garden on your deck this year.

Remember to contact Cottage Culture if you need help choosing the right patio furniture to compliment your deck space and tie your design into your garden.


Evaluate Your Space 


Every outdoor living space is unique in terms of size, layout, and hours of direct or indirect sunlight, so your gardening options will be based on those criteria. Regardless of which conditions you have available to you, there are many ways to start a garden on your deck.

The amount of space available and the hours of sunlight and shade your space receives will impact how much you can grow and what you can grow. However, with a little bit of creativity, you can easily achieve a thriving garden on a deck, patio, or balcony.

If you have a small space, consider using your vertical space or opting for planters that can hang on your deck railing. Window boxes and hanging baskets can also be incorporated into tighter areas without limiting your living space.

For shady decks that do not receive a lot of direct or indirect sunlight throughout the day, plan to select shade-loving plants and vegetables for your space. Typically, plants grown for their leaves will do fine in partial shade, while plants grown for their fruit, root, or flowers will require more consistent sunlight.

As you can see, the realities of your space and daily growing conditions are critical factors in the decisions you will make next!



Decide What to Plant 


Once you have evaluated your deck's size, layout, and conditions, you can consider which types of flowers, fruits, vegetables, and other plants you would like to grow.

What you choose will be a personal decision, but you may consider deck garden ideas such as:

  • deck flower gardens for pollinators
  • growing vegetables in containers and planters
  • adding shade to your space with tall shrubs
  • increasing privacy with climbing flowers and vegetables
  • repelling pests with aromatic plants
  • and anything else you can dream of!

All of these options are possible even in a small space – some may just require you to get creative and invest time in planning. Remember to consider how much light each area of your deck will receive each day and choose your plants accordingly.


We love the Haya Outdoor Planter Baskets (set of 3) for an airy, natural, and neutral aesthetic or Tamma Outdoor Planters (set of 2) for a modern, sleek, and sophisticated space!   



Purchase Your Garden Supplies 


Of course, you will also need to purchase garden supplies so you can start your deck garden in your new pots and planters. Potting soil, a trowel, and a hose or watering can 

are the essentials for a deck garden, but you can build up your tools and gardening supplies over time.

Depending on what you are growing in planters and pots on your deck garden, you may also choose to purchase gardening shears, a bucket for clippings and weeds, gloves, a foam kneeling mat, and other tools that will help you keep your deck garden healthy. 

What you ultimately need will be a matter of the types of plants you choose and whether you purchase your plants from a nursery or start seeds indoors at home. However, soil, a hand trowel, and a water source are an absolute must!


Plant Your Flowers and Vegetables in Your Containers 


While some of your new flowers, fruit bushes, and vegetable plants may be able to stay in the container you brought them home from the nursery in, most will likely benefit from being moved to your planters or a larger pot. Be sure to pay attention to what type of conditions each plant prefers before deciding where or how to plant them.

Pre-made urn planters, window boxes, herb bundles, and hanging baskets are typically intended to stay in their original container, while younger vegetable plants and flowers need more space to reach their maturity.

A knowledgeable employee at your local nursery or garden centre will be able to help answer any questions you have about repotting and maintaining your new plants.


Maintain Your Container Garden 


Planning and planting your deck garden are exciting parts of the process, but it is important to remember that your flowers, shrubs, vegetables, and fruit plants will require ongoing maintenance in order to produce for you.

Ensure you have the time to take care of regular watering, weeding, deadheading, harvesting, and treating pests. You can also expect garden cleanup and maintenance at the end of the season. 

It is also important to note that container gardens tend to dry out more quickly than in-ground gardens, so neglecting them for even a week can wreak havoc on your plants. Consider asking a neighbour, friend, or family member to check on your deck garden if you will be away on vacation over the summer, particularly if there isn't any rain in the forecast while you are away.


Add High-Quality Patio Furniture and Accessories 


A perfect deck garden is not complete without incorporating furniture and accessories that allow you to relax, dine, and entertain. Consider adding a dining table and chairs, patio sofas or sectionals, lounge chairs, and accessories like rugs, outdoor pillows, and baskets to elevate your deck garden.

You may also want to find a stylish storage box to tuck away your gardening tools and extra pots. We love the Grasse Storage Box for keeping our deck spaces tidy.




Starting a garden on your deck is a great way to learn a new hobby, grow your own food, beautify your space, help the pollinators, and add privacy or shade to outdoor living spaces.

Everyone can learn how to garden on their deck regardless of their space, deck layout, and sunlight considerations – including you! With a bit of planning and creativity, you will find plants that can thrive on your deck.

You'll love the variety of options available for pots and planter styles, and you are sure to find one that aligns with your planting needs, deck aesthetic, and budget.

Remember that building a deck garden can be a lot of work throughout the growing season, but you are likely to get back more from the gardening process than you put in – especially when you incorporate high-end patio furniture and accessories that add comfort and elegance to your deck garden.


Shop With Cottage Culture 


If you are ready to put your deck garden plan into action, Cottage Culture is here to help! We offer a wide variety of high-quality patio furniture and accessories that will complement the aesthetic of your patio, balcony, or deck.

Browse our online collection or visit our showroom in beautiful Hensall, Ontario to see what we have available. Our passionate professionals will provide expert guidance on outdoor furniture and accessories and ensure you find what you are seeking. We also offer delivery and installation services and are proud to be a family-owned business offering a fun and personalized shopping experience.  

Are you looking for inspiration for your deck garden furniture and decor? Follow us on Facebook and Instagram!

Angela Roth at 12:12 PM
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5 Tips for choosing the Best Patio Furniture for You

Are you dreaming of spending this spring and summer at your cottage or in your backyard? Are you excited to eat dinner outside, entertain friends and family, or lay by the pool or lake? Is your current patio furniture up to these jobs? If not, it is definitely time to start thinking about upgrading your outdoor furniture, so you're ready to enjoy the warmer months to the max! 


Buying patio furniture can be an investment, so it is important to ensure you find pieces that you will love – and that will last – for many years to come. In addition, shopping can be overwhelming when you see the abundance of styles, materials, and layouts available on the market today. For that reason, we are here to help you navigate choosing the best patio furniture for you.


Continue reading to learn more about planning your space, choosing high-quality pieces, exploring different options, and making use of the expertise of outdoor furniture retailers near you!


Tip 1: Consider Your Lifestyle and Space 

Like most people, your backyard, balcony, or patio has become a valued extension of your main living space. However, how you use that space is entirely based on your personal preferences and priorities. Each area is also unique and will accommodate different styles and sizes of outdoor furniture. For that reason, considering your lifestyle and the size of your space is our first tip!


It is always fun to dream up your perfect yard or balcony, but you also want to be realistic about how much outdoor furniture will fit comfortably in the space you have. You also do not want to invest in pieces that will be underutilized or take up valuable space for gardens, walkways, a fire pit, planters, or play areas. Therefore, solid planning will make a big difference when it comes time to start shopping for patio furniture perfect for you.  


Consider Your Lifestyle

Perhaps you love to host lively outdoor dinner parties with friends and family. Or maybe you prefer to use your space to curl up with a good book in tranquil solitude. You may also like to have your coffee on the deck in the morning or stretch out on a lounger while you work on your tan. For you, it may even be a combination of all these fun summer activities. Therefore, how you and your family like to enjoy your outdoor living area will impact what types of patio furniture will suit your needs for entertaining, relaxing, dining, and lounging.  

Consider the Size of Your Space

The size of your space will also be a significant factor in what your outdoor living area can accommodate comfortably. If you have ample room, you may easily be able to have an outdoor dining area, sectional sofas, coffee tables, lounge chairs, and more. However, if

you have a smaller space, you may prefer multi-use foldable furniture or a small bistro table with seating. Crowding your area can make your space visually overwhelming and awkward to navigate, so be sure to consider what you truly have room for before dreaming up your new outdoor oasis.   


Our team can help you design the outdoor layout that fits your family’s lifestyle. Book a conversation with our patio furniture experts to get started.


Tip 2: Measure Your Space and Plan Your Layout 

It is easy to arrive at an outdoor furniture store and find many pieces that you love. However, it is also common to over or underestimate what will fit into your available space. For this reason, always measure your outdoor area and prepare a rough sketch of the layout you have in mind. Even if you change up your plan once you see the available patio furniture options at the store, your measurements will come in handy. Bring your sketch with you to make it easier to decide what will suit your space best.   



Tip 3: Consider Your Weather Conditions

Across Canada, we experience various weather conditions that can impact the longevity and functionality of patio furniture. Therefore, your weather can make a big difference in the outdoor furniture and accessories you choose for your home. If you live on the coast, you may have salty air and need to be conscious of how some patio sets will hold up. If your backyard gets full sun from dusk until dawn, you will want to look for UV-resistant materials. If your space is very open and you get heavy wind gusts, furniture made with heavier materials will be your best bet.


No matter what kind of weather you experience in your part of Canada, there is patio furniture that will withstand to harsh conditions! Experts here at Cottage Culture will be able to guide you on materials designed to withstand the elements in your region.


Tip 4: Select High-Quality and Durable Materials

When shopping for patio furniture, it can be tempting to buy cheaper sets to save some money in the short run. However, it is important to remember that you get what you pay for. Bargain sets may seem like a good idea at the time, but they are also prone to degrading more quickly. On the other hand, high-quality patio furniture can last for decades when cared for correctly, making it a worthwhile investment that saves you money and time in the long run. 


High-quality outdoor furniture will also be more comfortable, provide you with more customization options, and offer you better customer service. 


There is an abundance of options for materials used in high-quality patio furniture. Common materials include cast aluminum, wrought aluminum, stainless steel, wicker, teak, and wrought iron, to name a few. Each material has its own benefits, and the option you select will be based mainly on your style, weather conditions, how often you plan to rearrange your furniture, and how much maintenance you are up for each year.

  • Cast aluminum and wrought aluminum are lightweight, rust-free, and require little maintenance, making them popular for patio furniture. In addition, since these materials can be shaped into different designs, cast and wrought aluminum furniture come in an array of stylish and elegant designs.
  • All-weather wicker outdoor furniture typically has a cast aluminum frame covered with durable UV-resistant material. These pieces are comfortable with or without a cushion, sturdy, stylish, lighter-weight, and easy to clean.
  • Stainless steel is prized for its longevity and modern appeal. This material requires some occasional maintenance and may wear more quickly in regions with salty air, but it is an elegant, versatile option for patio furniture.
  • Teak outdoor furniture is solid, rot-resistant, and durable under many harsh weather conditions. Over time, teak will develop patina and appear grey (which has its own charm). However, if you love the honey hue of unweathered teak, protectants will maintain the wood's natural beauty. 
  • Wrought iron is a heavier material that offers classic elegance and character. It is not rust-resistant and will require annual maintenance, but it will last for generations with proper care. If you like to move your furniture around, look for lighter weight options like cast aluminum.


No matter which style and material appeals to you, talk to our patio design team and we will be able to help you narrow down what will work best for your climate and specific needs.


Visit a Showroom 

Before buying any outdoor furniture, be sure to visit a showroom to get a feel for what you like and don't like. Sometimes you may think a particular style is perfect until you see it in person. Unfortunately, this surprise can be incredibly disappointing when it arrives on your doorstep - and shipping unwanted furniture back can cost a pretty penny.


When visiting a showroom, don't be shy to take floor model patio furniture for a spin so you can see if the length, width, height, angles, and cushions are comfortable for you. Also, be sure to ask any questions you may have about product specifications, opportunities for customization,  and maintenance requirements.   


With your vision, rough layout, dimensions, knowledge of your weather conditions, and an idea of what materials may work best for you, you’ll be ready to start creating your backyard oasis in no time! 

Angela Roth at 12:31 PM
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