HOT TIPS TO FIGHT WIN­TER

TAKE STEPS TO EN­SURE COOLER TEM­PER­A­TURES DON’T DRIVE YOU FROM YOUR OUT­DOOR AR­EAS

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Gold Coast Eye - - GARDEN -

Land­scape ex­pert and Ad­bri Masonry brand am­bas­sador Ja­son Hodges says a change in tem­per­a­ture doesn’t have to force us to ad­just how we en­ter­tain and en­joy our out­door ar­eas and gar­dens. “A lit­tle prepa­ra­tion and a few smart pur­chases can win­ter-proof your back­yard by trans­form­ing it from an un­used win­ter space into a cosy fea­ture area that will be a fam­ily favourite year round.” BUILD A SOLID FOUN­DA­TION Ear­mark an area near your back door for an en­ter­tain­ing pa­tio. If pos­si­ble, pave a large enough area to fit an out­door set­ting and heat­ing unit. Cov­er­ing the space with an awning or per­gola helps to frame the space and makes it feel more like an al­fresco room, as well as shel­ter it from the el­e­ments, adding to the live­abil­ity of the space. Plan for rainy days and make drainage a pri­or­ity. LET THERE BE LIGHT With those short win­ter days, a well-lit gar­den is ideal if you want to con­tinue en­ter­tain­ing into the colder months. Light­ing can com­pletely change the look and feel of an area – opt for a flood­light that can be specif­i­cally di­rected at an area or fes­toon light­ing to add am­bi­ence (look for the IP44 rat­ing for in­door and out­door use in all con­di­tions). MAKE SURE TO WARM IT UP Go for a mo­bile heater to pro­vide flex­i­bil­ity, or a stylish yet func­tional fixed-strip heater, per­fect if you have an over­head per­gola. A fire pit will trans­form your back­yard into a cosy and invit­ing space on chilly evenings. Build up con­crete blocks around the pit for an added layer of safety. “The am­bi­ence a fire pit brings is worth the in­vest­ment alone, pro­vid­ing an en­joy­able fea­ture for the gar­den and a nat­u­ral gath­er­ing spot for so­cial­is­ing and en­ter­tain­ing. It’s a great fo­cal point, I like to de­scribe it as na­ture’s TV and peo­ple are nat­u­rally drawn to the camp­fire-like at­mos­phere,” Ja­son says.

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