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Decking Buying Guide

Decking Buying Guide

A quality deck will last 10-30 years, so it’s worthwhile doing research before you buy to make sure that your deck suits your family’s needs and your maintenance preferences. That’s why we’ve put together this simple buying guide to help you choose the right decking materials and type for you.

In this guide we’ll look at:

  • Decking materials
  • Whether to repair or replace
  • Making the most of your deck
  • Keeping your deck looking its best

Decking Materials

The majority of people choose timber for their decking – it’s easy to install, fairly simple to maintain, and you can repair parts of it rather than replacing if you experience any issues, breaks, or even rot. However, composite decking is gaining popularity thanks to the reduced maintenance requirements.

Wood Decking

Pros Cons

Can be repaired rather than replaced
Suitable for any budget – softwood is cheaper, hardwood is more expensive
Environmentally friendly
Comes in a variety of colours (and can be painted/stained)
Easy to install

Tends to fade
Can crack or splinter or warp
Requires re-staining/oiling and annual maintenance


Is it for you? If you’d like a natural, tactile deck that blends well with the natural environment and you’re happy to give it some TLC, timber decking is an excellent choice.

Composite Decking

Pros Cons

Minimal maintenance required
Slip resistant
Does not splinter
Comes in a variety of colours and finishes
Looks the same year after year

Requires more support (weaker than wood)
Cannot be repaired – requires replacement once damaged
Less environmentally friendly
More expensive than wood

Is it for you? If you’d like a safe, non-slip deck that will look the same for years without the need for annual maintenance, composite decking is an excellent solution for you.

Should You Repair or Replace Your Decking?

If you’re decking has seen better days, it can be difficult to decide whether to repair or replace it. A lot of wooden decks can look as good as new with a simple sand and stain, which is one of the major benefits of timber over composite decking. If you’re experiencing rot, you can even replace those specific boards rather than the entire deck. However, it’s important to ensure that your deck is safe.

Safety checks:

  • Make sure that your deck does not flex more than it should – if a particular area is bouncing or bending more than others, it will need reinforcement or replacing
  • Check for rot to ensure that areas aren’t weakening under your feet – you can do this by pressing a metal tool such as screwdriver into the wood to see whether it gives way
  • Consider whether your deck was built before 2004 – if it was, you may want to replace it since the timber may have been treated with chromated copper arsenate (which is toxic)
  • Check for splinters or rusted nails
  • Make sure railings and banisters are all secure
  • Check steps and stairs to ensure that they are not creaking or moving when you step on them

If your decking fails some of these safety checks, such as the splinter check, it is still possible to sand down and repair your deck. However, more serious problems such as excessive movement when you walk on it need to be dealt with by replacing both the decking and the joists underneath.

If your deck has passed all of the safety checks, it’s worth considering the cost of simply updating it vs. replacing it. In some instances, sanding down the entire deck and re-staining or oiling it may take more time and effort than simply replacing it.

Making the Most of Your Deck

The best-looking decks complement the style of the house and the rest of the garden. You can add a number of design elements to your decking, including railings, benches, planters, and even sunken seating (if it is a raised deck) and pergolas to make your decking area more attractive to look at and spend time in.

It’s worth asking yourself these questions before buying so that you can design the right deck for your home:

  • Will you have BBQs on your deck? If so, you need a large enough decking area to keep the BBQ a safe distance from trees and the house.
  • Do you have children in the house or visiting regularly? Railings are a good idea in households with children to avoid them falling off raised decks or going into other areas of the garden unsupervised.
  • Will you buy garden furniture or do you want to install seating?
  • Do you want a shaded area on the deck?
  • Have you decided on a decking pattern? If not, take a look at our simple guide.
  • Can neighbours easily overlook your deck? If so, you may want to build a pergola or just add some trellis to the top of your fencing to increase privacy.

If you want more than just a deck in your garden, you can add beautiful features like an outdoor fireplace, firepit, or even a pergola with a hot tub. It all depends on your style, budget, and imagination.

Keep Your Deck Looking Its Best

When you invest in home improvements, you want to make sure that they look their best for as long as possible. Timber and composite decking have different maintenance requirements, so this guide should help you decide what you are willing to do on a regular basis as well as helping you maintain a good looking deck.

Regardless of your decking material, you should always:

  • Ensure a minimum of 6” ventilation under your deck and between the joists
  • Ensure that the area under your deck drains well
  • Clean your deck at least twice per year
  • Sweep dry debris (such as leaves and branches) off the surface of your deck – rain can wet this debris and cause it to rot or mulch on the surface of your deck, which can cause staining or damage
  • Keep debris out of the gaps of your decking so that water can run off easily
  • Move items that are on the decking (such as plant pots and benches) to prevent staining
  • Avoid place wrought iron furniture directly onto the deck as it can stain

Composite Decking Maintenance

Composite decking needs very little maintenance – most of the regular maintenance just involves keeping the deck clean. It’s best to remove dirt or marks as soon as possible (especially if you have a tree that drops sap or berries, or somebody has spilled a drink or dropped food on the deck). This can be done using a mild cleaner and water – stickier marks or messes need to be scrubbed well and rinsed with water.

Although composite decking is very resilient, pressure washers are not always the best way to keep your deck clean. Avoid using pressure washers at over 1,300 psi or bringing the nozzle closer than 12” to the surface of your deck.

Timber Decking Maintenance

In addition to the items above, timber decking requires oiling or staining to prevent water damage. Every few years it is also a good idea to strip and re-finish your deck, which involves using a deck finish stripper or sander to take off the surface of your deck and then apply a stain, preservative, or oil to ensure that the wood does not absorb excessive moisture when it rains.

You can test whether your deck needs to be re-sealed by sprinkling a few drops of water onto the surface. If it soaks into the wood, it needs to be re-sealed. Your sealant should ideally have a UV blocker or pigment to prevent discolouration of the wood.

How to Make Your Garden More Private

If you want to turn your garden into a hideaway, you’ll need to make sure that it’s private enough to be able to relax and wind away summer days and evenings without feeling self-conscious or overlooked. Since gardens and homes are typically built in rows, it can be difficult to really feel the benefit of private outdoor space. Here are a few tips to help you make your garden more private.

1.Make Your Fence Taller

It’s likely that you already have a garden fence, but the height might mean that sound and BBQ smells travel a little too easily. You may even be able to see over it into your neighbours’ gardens, which destroys the illusion of privacy when you’re outside. The simplest and most attractive way to make your fence a little taller is by adding trellis with a climbing plant – this has the benefit of looking attractive rather than anti-social.

2.Build a Pergola

If you have specific areas of the garden you like to relax in, building your own pergola can achieve two aims – you can create comfortable seating and a shelter so that your neighbours can’t see you easily from their windows. This is a great way to separate areas of your garden for socialising and to extend the use of your garden into the cooler months (or just create a shelter to avoid sun burn in the summer). We have a great article on how to build your own pergola here.

3.Screen off Private Areas

If you spend any time looking at landscaping and gardening magazines, you’ll notice that many of them focus on creating distinct areas within a garden, rather than just a lawn and a border. You can plant hedges, add hurdle fence panels, or just add decking to areas of the garden with balustrades. This disrupts the line of sight and means that each little section of the garden is a little more private. It also means that you have more usable, separate spaces rather than a single lawn which can make your garden seem considerably bigger.

4.Use Berms and Different Levels

If you don’t want to add hedges or fences to your garden, you can define different areas by creating berms so that each section of your garden is at a different level. Depending on your water tables and drainage, you may even be able to create sunken seating areas that keep sound contained and create small hideaways from the rest of the garden and any prying eyes. 

How to Make the Most of Your Decking

If you’ve planned your deck, chosen a material, decided on a decking pattern, and finally created an outdoor space you can be proud of, why stop there? Your deck can provide a stable, clean, and safe surface for entertaining and BBQs, but you can add more to make it comfortable and attractive too. If you’d like to take your deck to the next level, here are a few ideas to help!

Build Integrated Seating

Instead of a wobbly plastic chair, create an integrated sofa to relax on during long summer evenings. Building your furniture directly on or into the deck prevents build up of leaves and other material under your furniture and makes the entire area much easier to clean. You can even use the seating to make the deck a little safer by creating benches with high backs around the edges of your deck so nobody will slip or fall off the edge. Cushions can be brought in and out during BBQs and parties, or you can just sit on the wood itself.

Add Planters

Whether you want to grow your own veg or add some sweet-smelling flowers to your deck, planters are a hassle-free way to grow and manage your garden without having to sacrifice any of your lawn. You can add them around the edge of your deck or add thicker walls and create half-planter, half-table features in the middle of your seating area.

Create Some Shade

Shade doesn’t just help you avoid sunburn – it can create a covered area that stays warmer for longer or even a little shelter for the inevitable moment when it rains in the middle of your BBQ. There are a number of ways to create shade, from awnings and sails through to building a full pergola on your deck.

Go All Out

If you want to go even further, you can add a sunken trampoline or even a hot tub to your decking area so the entertainment is actually built-in. These are much more involved (and generally expensive) projects but they ensure that you’ve got a very good reason to use your decking area throughout the year. 

How to Install a Sunken Trampoline

If you bought your children a garden trampoline for Christmas, or even bought one for yourself to enjoy some outdoor exercise without the need for a gym membership, it’s important that you install it safely and easily. Simply standing the trampoline on your lawn is the simpler way to install it, but it means that you often overlook your neighbours when jumping on it, and if anybody does fall off the trampoline they are very likely to injure themselves. Installing it as a sunken trampoline helps to reduce risks of serious injury (when done properly) and means that it does not dominate your garden as much since it’s just a continuation of the standard ground level.

Installing a sunken trampoline is relatively simple; just follow these instructions to help add the trampoline to your garden ready to use:

  1. Decide where you want to place your trampoline and mark the size and position on your lawn – remember to make sure that it is a safe distance from sheds, fences, and any other potential hazards.
  2. Move your trampoline and measure the length of its legs – you will need to dig out this depth.
  3. Dig! Most outdoor trampolines are quite large, so it’s probably worth hiring a digger or even hiring somebody to do this stage for you, since there will be a lot of earth to move. Consider whether you will be placing the earth elsewhere in your garden or disposing of it and make sure you’re ready to do that before you start digging. Topsoil is good to keep, but you will probably want to dispose of subsoil.
  4. Depending on your soil and drainage, you may want to add a mini sump in the centre of your hole by digging down an extra foot and filling that section with rubble. This should not be much more work than the overall digging.
  5. Measure again and make sure that your hole is deep enough to fit into the hole without dipping below ground level. You may want to dig it so that the trampoline surface is 2-3 inches above ground level, but this creates a risk of things falling into the hole underneath the trampoline and may create a trip hazard. The hole should be large enough to accommodate the trampoline, but there should not be a gap around the edges.
  6. Create a doughnut – this is a safety precaution to mark the trampoline area and to use up some of your excavated soil. Use your excavated topsoil to create a ring around the trampoline with a slope on either side and a flat top.
  7. Cover your doughnut with turf – this makes it safe to run on and makes it more attractive.
  8. Jump!

Building a sunken trampoline rather than just standing it up on your lawn helps your children to use the trampoline safely and protects it from the wind or stormy weather, so you do not need to worry about the trampoline blowing over or having to be secured to the ground. You may want to put a section of play bark on the inside of the doughnut for an even safer play area. 

Composite vs. Timber Decking

Composite and timber are the most popular options for decking in the UK – both materials offer their own benefits and come with specific drawbacks. The right choice for your garden and family depends largely on your budget, how much time you will dedicate to maintaining it, how long you would like your deck to last, and the overall look you are trying to create.

Comparing Decking Costs

The cost of timber decking boards depends on the type of wood – softwood decking is considerably cheaper than both hardwood decking and most composite decking options. Hardwood decking is more similar in price to composite decking. If you choose to buy timber decking, you will also need to buy stains or oil to ensure that it looks its best for longer, and there will be some further spend required over the lifetime of the decking to maintain it.

Decking Life Spans and Maintenance

Well-maintained timber decking can last for a lifetime. Timber is easily sanded down and sections can even be replaced, so if you do suffer from rot or fungus you can treat that specific area rather than having to change your entire deck. However, you will need to look after your decking to ensure that it lasts for as long as the rest of your timber products at home.

Composite decking, on the other hand, will last around 20-30 years but requires less maintenance. The majority of composite decking just needs to be cleaned regularly, and there is no need to treat or stain it to prevent moisture damage. Due to the low maintenance requirements of composite decking, timber is by far the most time consuming material over its lifespan. However, due to the plastic content composite decking can be more prone to scratches, which are harder to repair than on timber since you cannot sand down a composite deck to deal with superficial issues.

Environmental Impact

Timber is one of the most environmentally-friendly materials you can use. All of our timber products are responsibly sourced to minimise your impact on the environment further still. Composite decking is made from a mixture of plastic and wood fibres – the wood fibres are often recycled and if you select your supplier carefully you can find decking made from recycled plastics as well. However, plastics typically have more of an impact on the environment due to the production processes, by-products, and the fact that plastics are generally made using cellulose, natural gas, salt, and crude oil.


One of the major drawbacks of composite decking is the strength, or rather the fact that composite decking is not a structural material and requires more support than timber decking. This is easily overcome by placing joists closer together to support your decking and prevent sagging or breakages, but the additional requirements can double the cost of your deck structure.

Look and Feel

Both materials come with a range of options and have their own benefits and drawbacks, depending on your taste. Composite decking is less slippery than timber and comes in a range of colours and finishes. The finish is also considerably more consistent – every board of a composite deck is the same colour and texture, whereas timber decking can have colour variations due to the natural wood and knots. Composite decking will keep the same look and colour for longer without the need for ongoing maintenance, so if you would like a hassle-free deck this is the better choice. However, many of our clients simply prefer the look and feel of real wood, or the luxury of a hardwood deck.

Timber decking can result in splinters if not properly maintained and can be slippery when wet. The colours available are also more limited, but you can change the colour of your decking with stains or even paint if required.

Ultimately, material choices come down to personal preferences. If you would like a non-slip and very child-safe deck that only requires an annual wash, composite decking is the clear winner. If you prefer a traditional look and natural feel that you will not need to replace, timber decking is probably the best option for you. Lawsons stocks a range of softwood, hardwood, and composite decking to suit any taste. You can find decking supplies online or come to your local branch to place an order or to help you decide between the two materials. 

How to Care for Timber Decking

Timber decking can last for decades when properly cared for, but it’s important to maintain your decking if you’d like to keep it looking good. Here is our list of tips to help you keep your decking at its best and ensure that you don’t need to unnecessarily replace parts of or the whole deck.

  1. Prevent discolouration by removing debris, droppings, and food: a discoloured deck looks old and damaged, even though it’s just the surface. To avoid this, make sure that you regularly clean and sweep your deck to remove fallen berries, bird droppings, and food waste from BBQs.
  2. Clean your deck regularly: one of the best ways to avoid fungus build up and mould is to clean your deck regularly. Do not use bleach on  your timber deck, since it will break down the lignin which holds the wood together. You can use a mixture of water with citric acid if you would like to brighten up the timber, or hydrogen peroxide if you would like to lighten any stains. We also recommend using a fungicide/insecticide once per year to kill off any hidden pests or problems before they spread.
  3. Top up the water protection and finish with decking oil: this treatment acts as a preserver to avoid water damage and stop dirt from accumulating. You should apply two coats to a dry clean deck, but check the instructions on your product in case it has specific requirements. Decking oil is preferable to a sealant, since it penetrates deeper into the wood to prevent moisture from affecting your timber.
  4. Check for shards or splinters: as well as avoiding injury, shards and splinters show that the wood and external seal has broken, which may allow moisture to penetrate your timber decking even if it has been treated. Splinters and breaks should be sanded down and covered with sealer – in some cases you may need to completely replace that part of your deck, depending on the damage. 
How to Care for External Timber – Wooden Decks, Cladding, Sheds, Furniture, and More

Wood is a fantastic material – it has great thermal qualities, it’s pleasing to the touch, it’s attractive, and it’s a renewable material so building out of wood has a very limited impact on the environment (and can, in some cases, improve it). However, unlike plastics and other manmade materials, it does need a little more maintenance and care to keep it looking its best. Wood can be susceptible to splitting, rotting, wood boring insects, and fungus, so it’s important to care for it properly to ensure that your timber products last for decades rather than just years.

Why Does Wood Need Maintenance?

As a natural product and an essential part of our ecosystem, wood can provide a habitat for insects and fauna, as well as degrading in some circumstances – of course if you’ve built out of wood, you want to avoid this and ensure that your timber is fulfilling the function you bought it for, not creating a home for insects or plants.

The first year is the toughest for new wood – even pressure treated and kiln dried wood needs to adjust to its environment and moisture content. If your wood has been kept in a much drier area than your home or outdoor area, it will have contracted – this wood will then slowly absorb moisture and expand. If it has been rained on, the wood will absorb water and expand with the rain and then contract as it dries, which can cause splitting and warping. One of the main challenges when maintaining timber is limiting the amount of water it absorbs and therefore limiting how much it expands and contracts, as well as avoiding rot, which happens when the wood is submerged in water for too long.

Avoiding Water Damage

Regardless of whether your wood has been pressure treated, it’s important to seal it off a little and help it weather gradually – this means controlling the amount of moisture the wood absorbs over time, rather than letting it absorb as much water as possible from its immediate environment. You should paint it completely with a deep penetrating treatment that closes off the wood’s pores and prevent it from becoming water logged. It’s a good idea to use a product with fungicide as well, to cover all bases.

Controlling the Appearance of Your Wood

Controlling the water content won’t have a dramatic impact on your wood’s appearance – it is just for maintaining quality. If you would like to stain your wood, many wood stains have built in preservatives so you can kill two birds with one stone. If you prefer to see your natural wood colours and even watch it weather and silver (if, for example, you have Cedar cladding), avoid staining your wood and just focus on sealing it regularly. You can use deep penetrating oils that go into the wood rather than staying on the surface if you like the natural look, or if you would like to change the colour you can choose from a range of stains and even paints to get the effect you’d like.

Removing Old Stains and Treatment

Depending on the age of the wood and type of treatment, you may be able to take off older treatments and add your own touch. Sanding down your wood and retreating it is often part of a good maintenance cycle if you have suffered some weather damage on the surface, but the structure is still intact and the wood is still safe. Alternatively, in some cases you are likely to seriously damage your tools by trying to remove treatments (particularly if they have tar content or are particularly sticky) – in those cases, it is just best to completely replace the timber.

Regularly Checking Your Wood

Checking for rot and problems with your external timber means that you can do repairs quickly rather than having to replace damaged items completely. You should do this with timber windows and doors, as well as cladding, sheds, fences, and any other external wood in your home. Keep an eye out for differences in surface texture, colour, and shape – splitting, swelling, and darker areas are key signs that something is wrong. Try pushing the end of a screw driver into any dark patches, if it sinks easily that area is already rotted and should be removed and filled to prevent the rot from spreading to the rest of the wood. Splits should be treated to avoid water absorption, and if you see a lot of small holes it’s likely you will need to use a fungicide or pesticide, depending on the problem.

Keeping Your Deck & Shed Looking Good

Prevention is just as important as cure. You can avoid a lot of wood problems entirely by taking a few further precautions:

  • Put planters and plants into waterproof trays and raise them off the surface of your deck or away from your shed walls
  • Move plant pots around to prevent rings from forming
  • Do not place BBQs directly on your deck to avoid burn marks or fat stains – a thin sheet of metal or even sheet of timber is sufficient
  • Clean rust from your nails as soon as you see it to avoid stains
  • Take care to seal all cut surfaces and drilled holes, since these have gone through the sealed surface of your wood and allow more water absorption

If you need advice on treatment types and keeping your timber looking its best, speak to our team. Lawsons is one of the largest timber merchants in London and the South East, and we pride ourselves on our wide range of timber and wood care products

Decking Patterns - Choose the Right One for You

There’s far more to an attractive decking area than just choosing the right material – you need to choose the right decking pattern and features to make sure that it suits your home and your style. Features like decorative patterns and balustrading make your decking far more interesting and can even help you define seating areas or plants if they’re incorporated into your deck too.

Take a look at the decking patterns below to see a few of your options. Naturally, the standard patterns such as horizontal, vertical, and diagonal decking are far faster and easier to lay – if you’re a DIY novice or have some serious time constraints, these are probably the best options. If you’d like to add some detailing but don’t want to go through the more time-consuming process of a herringbone pattern or insert (for example), you can add a picture frame around the edges to make it a bit more interesting.

If you want to wow your guests and really take pride in your decking area, you might want to try something a bit more decorative, including patchwork or parquet patterns, or even a herringbone or basketweave. These definitely involve more planning and time, and you may require more materials than you would if you just laid a standard horizontal or vertical deck. If you’re installing timber decking, you can even stain the wood in different colours to highlight the pattern and add some more flair to your project.

Finally, you can decide on the finishing touches – balustrading is perfect for areas where you’d like to create a shelf for drinks or if it’s a raised deck (especially if you have children in the household). Your outdoor entertainment area can be used throughout the year, from summer BBQs to enjoying a hot drink and looking at the snow in winter. Take a look at our decking supplies to place your order today. 

How to Make Your Garden Wildlife Friendly

Some of the UK’s most loved animals are in decline and at risk of extinction – beloved species such as the dormouse and hedgehog are seeing falling populations due to intensive farming, urbanisation, and climate change.

Sir David Attenborough has said, “The natural world is in serious trouble and it needs our help as never before. We continue to lose the precious wildlife that enriches our lives and is essential to the health and wellbeing of those who live in the UK.” Luckily, there are steps that you can take to make your garden wildlife friendly and to promote the wellbeing of animals that are living in your area.

Your garden isn’t just a place for you to relax; it can also become an adventure and opportunity to spot different types of birds and animals who are living all around us. Creating habitats and opportunities for animals to breed, shelter, and hibernate is key to helping our domestic species to last through the generations.

Turn Your Garden into a Habitat

A perfect lawn looks good, but it does not help to preserve our wildlife for the next generation. While you do not need to forgo a beautiful decking area or patio, it is helpful to create a few areas in your garden that work as a good habitat for different species. This includes:

  • Long grass areas for birds to lay eggs  and for insects to live in
  • Varied trees and shrubs – ideally flowering ones to provide nectar and food sources
  • Water features to allow birds to bathe and drink and for amphibians to lay eggs

These can all be incorporated into your garden without compromising on the overall look and feel.

Provide Shelter for Animals

There are a huge number of ways that you can help animals survive the night or even the winter. Creating a safe home for wildlife means you are more likely to see and enjoy different species throughout the year. A few options include:

  • Installing trellis along your walls to provide an area for birds to roost
  • Installing a bat box
  • Creating a bee hotel
  • Leaving your borders until late winter or early spring so that the vegetation can provide shelter for insects
  • Planting honesty and hedge garlic for butterflies to enjoy
  • Building a hedgehog box and placing it out of direct sunlight and in thick vegetation (or behind your shed)

As well as providing shelters, it’s important to provide ways for animals to enter and exit your garden. While birds and insects can fly, hedgehogs and frogs need a hole in your fence to crawl through – especially if you have installed gravel boards.

Reduce Hazards for Your Wildlife

Once you have created good conditions for animals to live and thrive in your garden, it’s important to avoid harming them in other ways. Common garden items such as slug pellets, for example, can kill hedgehogs. Toxic wood preservatives can also leech into the soil and harm wildlife, so it’s important to work with natural or non-toxic paints and preservatives throughout your garden. 

Use Pavers to Make a Modern Water Feature

If you want to break up your lawn and attract wildlife to your garden, there’s no better way to do it than a pond or water feature. They’re surprisingly easy to make for something that increases desirability and creates so much entertainment throughout the year. You don’t even need to add fish to watch squirrels, birds, and even frogs playing and running around your garden.

Using paving slabs or kerbing/edging around your pond is a great way to give it a more modern look and keep the edges safe and stable. Rocks and plants provide more interest and anchor the pond to the rest of your garden so that it complements its surroundings rather than standing out. It’s a good weekend project if you don’t mind a bit of digging!

This example from The Garden Glove uses a solar-powered pump to move the water around, but there’s no need to go quite that high-tech. These are the easy steps to digging out a simple garden pond.

  1. Decide where your pond will go and measure out the area: if you want to add plants to your pond, it’s important to make sure that it’s in the sunlight so they can thrive. You can either use a pre-made plastic container to stop the water from draining out of your pond, or a plastic liner which means you can decide the size and shape yourself. If you’re using a container, just trace around it to make a dip in the soil and dig that out. If you’re using a liner, make sure that you factor the depth into your sizing, since the liner will need to cover the bottom of your pond and go up the sides.
  2. Dig out your pond: this is hardest part of the project (especially if you have clay soil or lots of rocks) so it’s worth asking someone to help. Dump your soil in a wheelbarrow or elsewhere in the garden – if you’re planning to make raised planters at some point, it’s a good idea to keep your soil so you don’t need to buy much filler.
  3. Line your pond: put your container into the hole you dug out, or use your liner to cover the soil in your pond. Make sure your liner overlaps the edges by around a foot – your pavers will hide it and weigh it down so that it doesn’t fall into the pond and let water drain out later. You may want to put some rocks on the bottom of your pond, especially if the container is light and needs to be camouflaged.
  4. Add pavers or stones to the edges of your pond: the design and arrangement is entirely up to you. Natural stone pavers can link the pond to your patio, or concrete pavers give it a sleek, modern look without spending too much. You can mix it up with pebbles or chippings as well.
  5. Add plants: if you want to add plants to your water feature, make sure that the rim of the plant pot sits just under the surface.
  6. Fill your pond with water!
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