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20 Great Garden Accessories
Whether you consider yourself green-fingered or you’re just starting out in the world of gardening, it’s important to have the right tools. With the help of high-quality gardening gadgets, you can do everything from putting up bird boxes to mulching leaves, building flowerbeds and attracting bumblebees with ease.
It’s also a fun way to make your mark on your outdoor kingdom. Passionate cooks have utensils for smashing, draining and pressing. Similarly, a gardener’s gadgets can tell you whether they’re mad for impeccably manicured lawns, besotted with wildflowers or planning for summer barbeques on the patio.
There are many different kinds of garden accessories available online. The gadgets you find most valuable will depend on your current goals. Do you want to create a natural haven for local wildlife? Is your lawn patchy and in need of a makeover? Perhaps you find weeding a challenge and need an accessory to take the work out of it.
To help you find the perfect tools and gadgets, we’ve compiled a list of the 20 best garden accessories online. Now you’ve got everything you need to help you create and maintain a beautiful outdoor space.
1. Solitary Bee Hotel
Lend a hand to the lonely bee by buying a solitary hotel for your garden. These wooden containers are shaped like little houses and filled with hundreds of holes for solitary bees to nest inside. Solitary hotels are an easy way to give rapidly dwindling bee populations a safe place to rest and lay their eggs.
Most require no set-up or installation. Simply nail a solitary hotel to your garden wall or fence and wait for the bees to arrive. The best bee hotels are ones that can be taken apart and cleaned just like a bird feeder.
2. Robotic Lawn Mower
Putting the word ‘robot’ in front of any garden accessory instantly makes it sound cool. Fortunately, robot lawn mowers are every bit as exciting as they sound. These clever machines don’t come cheap but that’s because a high-quality robot mower can cut an entire lawn and dispose of the grass clippings with no intervention whatsoever.
They work by creating a digital map of the space, much like an indoor Roomba does. This map tells the robot mower how long and far to cut, where to expect obstacles and when to stop and turn around to avoid cutting up flowerbeds and borders. These garden gadgets are pricey but also remarkably clever. We can’t wait to get one.
3. Garden Fire Pit
Want to enjoy your outdoor space even after the sun goes down? Consider investing in a garden fire pit. They’re a great way for outdoorsy types to get maximum use out of their backyards even through winter. With a contemporary fire pit, it doesn’t matter if it gets chilly out – light a fire, pull up a chair and keep the al fresco party going.
Garden fire pits come in various shapes and sizes. Some are designed to be permanently installed fixtures. Others fire pits are semi-portable and can be moved to different areas of the backyard. They are fuelled by either propane, natural gas or wood so think carefully about which is the best option for your yard. Fire pits make truly fantastic garden accessories.
4. Stainless Steel Sphere Water Feature
Not all garden gadgets have a practical use. These days, it’s common to decorate outdoor spaces with relatively abstract art and designs. For instance, stainless steel spheres are a popular choice because they have a crisp, modern aesthetic. Reflective surfaces of this kind are particularly helpful in small gardens as they create the illusion of more space.
Adding a stainless steel sphere water feature to your garden is an easy way to make it look and feel contemporary. It adds visual appeal, of course, and don’t forget the relaxation properties of running water. There’s a good reason so many gardeners choose to enhance their yards with water features. The sound of water suggests peace, tranquillity and calm.
5. Wall Mountable Garden Mirror
Ambitious gardeners know ‘outdoor’ and ‘indoor’ are just words. With a little bit of creativity, these environments can borrow from one another. A wall mountable garden mirror, for example, is a really easy way to make an outdoor space feel bigger. Just as they do indoors, reflective surfaces trick the eye into thinking there’s more of everything making them effective garden accessories.
Place a mountable mirror in your garden to help light bounce into dark corners. This will give the illusion of additional depth and space. We’re particularly fond of mirrors with cathedral style arches as they add an old school quaintness to gardens. We recommend a mirror with a waterproofed backing and a frame that can be repainted if the coating starts to peel.
6. Nesting Box Video Set
The next time you’re browsing for garden gifts, consider a nesting box video kit. They make superb presents for wildlife lovers. These easy to use kits include a regular sized bird box, much like you’d see in any other garden. The difference is these particular bird boxes are rigged with internal cameras.
A CMOS camera is mounted to the roof to provide a live feed of everything that’s going on inside the box. So, if you or a loved one are obsessed with birds, this is a cool way to get a look at their nesting behaviours. The best part is you can watch as often as you like without causing any disturbances to the wildlife in your garden.
7. Garden Igloo
Garden igloos have got to be one of the most exciting backyard trends to emerge in recent years. These portable outdoor shelters require minimal setup – in many cases, no DIY is needed. Igloos are simply erected like tents with poles and connecting rods. If you can’t or won’t build a shed, this is the next best thing.
With a garden igloo, you get 360° of open, clear window so the view is endlessly satisfying, and you can enjoy your backyard regardless of weather conditions. The geodesic design captures heat so it works like a miniature glasshouse but with ventilation features to make sure it never gets too hot inside.
8. Wooden Garden Pergola
Sometimes, you want to enjoy the sunshine without exposing yourself to harsh light. With a wooden garden pergola, it’s easy to get the best of both worlds. Pergolas are similar to gazebos but, unlike a gazebo, a pergola provides partial shade.
Ever sat beneath a beautiful garden arbour and felt protected from the harsh sun even while basking in its glow? Outdoor structures like these offer the perfect balance of shelter and exposure. They can be used as covered areas for sitting and entertaining. Wooden pergolas are also a popular way to link different parts of a garden such as a stone path to a patio. This makes them one of the best garden accessories to add vertical structure to the backyard.
9. Orangutan Garden Ornament
For something different, we recommend you pick up a cool orangutan garden ornament. These quirky garden accessories aren’t to everybody’s taste, but we absolutely love them. What better way to jazz up your backyard than with one of these wise stone guardians?
They’re particularly well suited to wilder spaces. Nestle a gorgeous stone orangutan atop a hedge or among your favourite flowers. It might take visitors a little while to notice him, but we guarantee they’ll smile when they do. If you’ve got friends who love gardening, these ornaments make great garden gifts.
10. Funny Garden Gnome
Gnomes might be more traditional than garden orangutans, but you can still have lots of fun with them. Make visitors grin with a mischievous gnome in lingerie, flip flops, a rubber ring or even the iron throne from Game of Thrones (no, really).
There are naughty garden gnomes with smoking pipes, toilets, (very) cheeky hand gestures and some very interesting outfits indeed. If you’ve got a sense of humour, they’re a really fun addition to an outdoor space. Why restrict your personality to the house? Pick up a zombie gnome and show the neighbours you’re wittier than they are.
11. Garden Hot Tub Spa
It’s remarkable how affordable hot tub spas for gardens have become in recent years. While they’re significantly pricier than a garden gnome, you can pick one up for $350 these days which would have been impossible ten years ago. The point is, you can enjoy your garden in true style and comfort for the same price as you’d pay for a high quality fire pit.
The thing to remember about garden hot tubs and similar gadgets is they require routine maintenance. You need to treat the water with purifying tablets or chlorine and apply clarifying chemicals to prevent it from clouding. Look for a hot tub with sophisticated auto cleaning functions if you’re keen to keep things as low maintenance as possible.
12. Patio Heater
If you enjoy entertaining in your outdoor space, the ideal garden accessory for you is a patio or deck heater. Like fire pits, patio heaters are a great way to extend the use of a garden right the way through fall and winter. It doesn’t matter if it gets chilly outside. Just switch on the heater – some even have automatic settings – and leave the coldness of dusk behind.
Some patio heaters are fully portable while others need to be permanently installed. For instance, some heating systems can be integrated with gazebos to create a warm, sheltered space. There are lots of eco-friendly, energy efficient products on the market that switch off automatically after a certain period of time or use infrared as a greener alternative to gas.
13. Bat Box
Perhaps garden birds are not what interest you. Maybe you’ve got a curiosity for something more exciting such as local bat populations. Luckily, it’s almost as easy to attract bats as garden birds – just give them a safe spot for nesting. You can pick up a sturdy bat box for almost next to nothing (under $20).
Like bird boxes, they are typically wall or roof mounted. They have a covered hole for the native bats to crawl inside and find shelter. These garden accessories are a truly ecological installation to your garden space. Unlike bird boxes, which are usually plain and smooth inside, bat boxes have ridges for the animals to hang from. Place yours as high as possible, either in a tree or under the eaves of your house, to encourage nesting.
14. Garden Rock Speakers
We’ve got a real fondness for garden rock speakers. What’s cooler than supplementing your home sound system with perfectly disguised outdoor speakers? They look exactly as you’d expect. These speakers are designed to blend in perfectly with their environment. They’re waterproof, extremely robust and can be left outdoors in all conditions.
For those who like to entertain, they’re a valuable investment. Place some rock speakers in your favourite areas of the yard such as on the patio, underneath a pergola or around garden water features. If you don’t want to fiddle around with electric wiring, make sure you choose speakers that are Bluetooth compatible.
15. Hanging Moroccan Garden Lanterns
Moroccan lamps make a beautiful addition to any garden, but they are particularly well suited to smaller spaces. Often, the outer cases of these hanging lamps are adorned with intricate cut out patterns that let light spill dramatically outwards across a deck or patio.
They come in a huge variety of colours and shapes, from globe like lamps to lamps shaped like tear drops and stars. Some are solar powered and spring to life automatically at dusk. Others are powered by electric and come with fully adjustable settings that allow the user to switch between different types of light (bright, dim, flicking, etc).
16. Hanging Garden Chair
Garden accessories can be all about comfort. Take hanging garden chairs, for example. They’re suspended from a short frame so you can swing gently while sitting much like you wood in a hammock. The difference is hanging chairs are more stylish than hammocks and there’s no tricky knots or ties involved.
Plus, they can be moved to any part of the yard and even used indoors as long as the frame is freestanding. Place yours beneath a pergola or awning on a lazy summer afternoon and allow the breeze to lull you into complete relaxation.
17. Garden Gazebo
Garden gazebos are typically used as semi-permanent outdoor shelters but there are some designs which are more weather resistant and can be kept in place indefinitely.
This is an important consideration for anybody looking to invest in one. Do you need a permanent freestanding shelter – and is a gazebo a better choice than a pergola – or a temporary cover for an outdoor event such a yard party or cook out?
The answer will determine how much you pay for a gazebo and what shape and design you choose. For extra protection from the elements, look for a product with enclosed sides and complete roof. Most gazebos of this type come with window openings, so you don’t have to worry about it being dark on the inside.
18. Rollable Garden Drinks Cooler
Have you always dreamed of having your own outdoor bar? You need one of the slickest garden gadgets around, the rollable drinks cooler. It’s a trolley on wheels which contains a sizeable cool box. You can keep beer, wine, prosecco, soft drinks and even snacks chilled right next to you in the garden.
These portable coolers are a great accessory to keep around the house. They’re even more useful for entertaining at parties and cook outs. Just wheel your trolley out to parched guests and enjoy the satisfaction of knowing you throw the best garden parties in town.
19. Window Bird Feeder
For true nature obsessive’s, a regular bird feeder isn’t going to satisfy. So, offer one of the most exciting garden gifts with a window bird feeder. These devices are very simple. Instead of being nailed to a tree or garden post, they are attached directly to the external side of a window on the house.
As they’re transparent, these feeders give homeowners a superb opportunity to watch birds as they feed and frolic. The idea is the homeowner watches from indoors so as not to scare away the wildlife. The birds (and squirrels sometimes) should, in theory, be comfortable approaching and feeding from the box even there’s a person on the other side.
20. Pizza Oven
Now for a garden gadget that is very in vogue. While pricey, outdoor pizza ovens give homeowners the chance to make pizza using traditional methods. Most garden ovens are wood fired and work in a similar way to barbecues so that pizza bases are given a smoky, charcoal baked flavour.
We recommend you look for one with a stone base on the inside. This is how you make authentic stone baked pizzas. Some ovens are fully portable. This is a great feature if you go on a lot of excursions or camping trips. You can pack the oven in the car and quickly set it up in any location you choose
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Paul Nicolaides is a Landscape architect and garden builder with over 30 years experience in designing, building and maintaining gardens. Contemplating just how important garden space is for nature and recreation he created 'Cool Garden Gadgets' to explore the best gadgets for enhancing outside spaces. From outdoor dining ideas to the latest garden technology we break it down for you here.