Decking can be a fabulous addition to any garden, particularly if you want to increase the usability of the space and enhance its appearance. Whether you’re creating a dedicated seating area or simply cutting down on lawn maintenance, adding a deck to your garden can be an easy way to elevate your outdoor space.
What is Composite Decking?
Traditionally, all-timber decking was used in gardens, with decks being made entirely from wood. However, composite decking offers a modern alternative. Made from plastic and wood fibres, composite decking won’t rot due to poor weather conditions, so you can expect your deck to stand the test of time.
In addition to this, composite decking doesn’t require regular maintenance in the same way that an all-timber deck does. Wooden decking generally needs to be treated at least once per year to prevent it from attracting mould or rotting, for example, but composite decking doesn’t require the same care.
It’s also worth noting that composite boards tend to offer a better grip, which is why composite decking is generally less slippery than its all-timber counterparts. If you’ve ever gone sliding across a deck in a less than graceful manner (guilty!), then this will be an important reason to upgrade to composite decking!
Is Composite Decking Good for Small Gardens?
Many people assume that adding a deck to a small garden can make the space feel even smaller, but this simply isn’t the case. In fact, integrating composite decking ideas into a small garden can increase its functionality and complete its design. As a result, you’ll find that composite decking can be the ideal way to enhance a smaller garden.
For inspiration, take a look at these top composite decking ideas now and start planning how to optimise your garden design today…
1. Use Vertical Space with Split-Level Decking
When people talk about having a small garden, they’re usually referring to its square footage but what about the vertical space that’s available? A split-level composite deck allows you to make maximum use of this space, without taking up too much of the garden.
This allows you to retain a lawn or patio while also adding a deck to your garden, for example. What’s more – you can use a split-level or raised deck to create a dedicated seating or dining area to add extra functionality to your garden.
2. Upgrade a Roof Terrace
Apartment living can have a downside in that you don’t usually have your own garden. However, some apartments do provide access to a roof terrace, which gives you the opportunity to create your own outdoor idyll.
Alternatively, many homeowners are deciding to make maximum use of their property by converting regular roof space into a usable terrace. If you want to increase the amount of outdoor space that’s available to you, why not consider adding a roof terrace to your property?
“Whether you’re enjoying views of the countryside or a cityscape, a roof terrace can allow you to make the most of the outdoors, whatever your location.”
Of course, you’ll want to ensure that your roof terrace is perfectly equipped, and composite decking is a great solution. Not only does composite decking look stylish and contemporary but its low to no-maintenance requirements mean you won’t have to spend time keeping it in perfect condition.
3. Add Outdoor Lighting for a Brighter Feel
When you’re planning how to incorporate composite decking ideas into your garden, don’t forget to factor in lighting. Outdoor lights will create ambience, but they will also enable you to spend more time in your garden. With stylish outdoor lights, for example, you can spend summer evenings making the most of your outdoor space.
However, outdoor lighting doesn’t only have to be used around your decking. If you’re choosing split-level decking for your garden, for example, add spotlights to steps to maximise the visual impact of your composite decking and make the space feel larger.
4. Swap a Lawn for Composite Decking
If you have a very small garden or courtyard, you may want to consider swapping a lawn and using composite decking to cover the entire area. Similarly, if your courtyard consists of a patio or paving stones, this can be replaced with composite decking for a more contemporary look.
One of the advantages of this composite decking ideas is that you’ll drastically reduce the amount of maintenance that’s required to keep your outdoor space looking good. After all, storing a lawnmower all year round simply to trim a very small lawn a few times a year doesn’t make the best use of the space you have available.
By switching to a composite deck, you can make the space more functional, but you can also enhance its visual impact. As composite decking is available in a wide range of colours, you can even extend the décor and style of your interior to your outdoor space to create a seamless indoor-outdoor living area.
5. Level Off Sloped Lawns
A sloped garden can be hard to utilise, especially if it makes the outdoor space difficult to maintain or hard to grow plants. In fact, many homeowners simply leave sloped areas untouched because they’re so hard to manage.
Fortunately, composite decking ideas give you the opportunity to turn an unused, sloped area into a fully functional part of your garden. By adding composite decking, you can level off the sloped area and transform it into a seating or entertainment area, for example.
6. Use Decking as a Backdrop for a Living Wall
Composite decking is designed as outdoor flooring, but this isn’t the only way it can be used to enhance a smaller sized garden. In fact, you can use composite decking vertically to create a striking fencing effect. When combined with shrubs, climbing plants and hanging baskets, this can even create a spectacular backdrop for a living wall.
If your garden doesn’t offer much space for growing plants, fill a composite decking living wall with greenery instead.
You can add a living wall to an existing deck or use it anywhere in your garden as a statement feature. Whether you’re segmenting a composite deck with complementary vertical decking or designing a freestanding living wall, this no-maintenance material makes it easy to elevate your garden.
7. Choose a Chevron Pattern
All-timber decking is typically installed so that the wooden planks are running in either a horizontal or vertical direction, but there is more scope for pattern and individuality when it comes to composite decking. As well as enhancing the appearance of the deck, you can use patterns as a savvy way of creating the illusion of space in small gardens.
If you’re adding composite decking so that it adjoins your property, for example, choose a chevron pattern that runs away from the property, towards the end of your garden. This will elongate the appearance of the deck and make it seem like your garden is larger than it really is.
8. Select Lighter Tones for Smaller Spaces
With composite decking ideas, you aren’t constrained when it comes to colour and style. From bright, vibrant shades to natural, earthy tones, you can be as traditional or modern as you like when you’re adding a composite deck to your outdoor space.
If your garden is on the small side, however, you may want to stick to lighter tones to ensure your deck doesn’t feel obtrusive. Light greys, ash and even ivory composite decking boards can look stunning, especially in smaller gardens where space is at a premium. By choosing a lighter tone, you create a more spacious feel and ensure your decking reflects the heat too. Read more here on what colour makes a garden look bigger.
9. Create a Covered Deck
Uncovered decking is an excellent addition to a garden in the spring and summer but what about when the weather turns? If you want to make the most of your garden, a covered deck can help you to do just that. Whether you’re working from home or simply enjoying the fresh air, you’ll find that a covered composite deck increases the functionality of your garden and allows you to spend more time outdoors.
For smaller gardens, a pergola is a great option for a covered deck. While it doesn’t offer complete coverage, it will prevent the glare of the sun from getting too hot. Alternatively, a retractable awning will provide the weather protection you need, when you need it, and can be neatly retracted when it’s not in use.
Upgrading Your Garden Design with Composite Decking Ideas
With minimal maintenance required and a wide range of styles and colours available, it’s easy to see why composite decking has become so popular. However, these aren’t the only reasons why homeowners are turning to composite decking to transform their outdoor space.
When you want to make a smaller garden feel more spacious and add functionality to your garden, composite decking is the obvious solution. Whether you replace your lawn with an all-weather deck or simply integrate a new deck into your existing space, you won’t regret adding a composite deck to your garden.