Set the mood for summer entertaining in the garden with these inspiring ideas
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Just add water
For tranquil surroundings, nothing beats the sound of moving water. A still pond near your patio will create a soothing focal point, while a splashing water feature like this one designed by landscaper Jan Blok will add sparkle and interest. Light up the feature so it’s visible at night.
Lighting up your garden at night creates a fabulous mood. Install lights to illuminate garden features or accent plants, or simply string up a few lanterns, hang oil lamps from trees or push in a solar spike or two.
Install a firepit
A firepit makes a sociable centrepiece and brings warmth and atmosphere to a summer night’s gathering. Choices include a free-standing fire basket in which you burn logs or a structure with a built-in fire basin like the one in this garden designed by Jan Blok. For instant flames, install a gas firepit. Place some chairs around the firepit and enclose the area with wooden trellising or bamboo fencing to create a cosy ambience.
Plant hanging baskets with a variety of colourful and trailing plants, such as violas or ivy, and hang them around your patio, or even from stands in your garden beds.
Scent the scene
Plant pretty, scented blooms near your entertaining areas or in pots on your patio to infuse the air with the heady perfume of summer. Consider jasmine, magnolias, moonflowers, roses, honeysuckle, lavender, rosemary, petunias and scented pelargoniums.
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