Dream decking

What does your dream garden feel like? A space to relax and unwind? Your personal oasis of calm? A place your children can play freely?

When the weather is on your side, taking to the garden can feel a little like being abroad, and what better way to bring back that holiday feeling than by sitting in your very own garden getaway sipping on a cold drink, or perhaps having dinner al-fresco.

Adding a deck can enhance how you use your garden, giving you a dedicated space to enjoy whatever makes your garden magical to you.

Why create a decked area of the garden?

garden decking

A decking area provides several benefits. One of the major ones being that you have an even and level space for relaxing and entertaining. A decked space gives you an ideal focal point for your garden furniture, to place a wendy house, or even create an outdoor cooking space complete with BBQ and pizza oven!

Having a deck gives you the opportunity to better enjoy your garden, creating an outdoor living area where you can come together as a family or entertain friends. 

Planning and designing a deck

why create a deck

Just like any other home improvement project, when planning your deck design, the first consideration should be “how do I want to use the space”? Are you looking to create an outdoor dining and BBQ area? Are you hoping to get out the sun loungers and enjoy catching some rays?

Starting with the purpose of the space will help you to figure out how large the space should be, the materials you might want to use, and where in your garden it should be located.

Where should I build my decking?

Choosing the right location for your deck area will be dependent on several factors. Firstly, consider how the sun will impact the space. If you’re creating a dining area, you may want to ensure that you will have, or at least can create, shade while eating outdoors.

Think about how much privacy you want for your deck, and whether you have an area of your garden which is not already overlooked, or whether you can create privacy with screens or clever planting.

While you may have an area mapped out, there are also practical considerations to bear in mind too. If the ground is uneven, additional preparation work may be needed or you may wish to opt for a raised deck. If the ground is particularly wet or boggy, it may not be suitable for laying decking.

Do I need planning permission to build decking?

While most smaller decks will not require any formal consent, surfaces such as decking are not permitted to cover more than 50% of a property’s garden, so if you’re considering a very large deck area, you may need to speak to the local authority before work begins.

Additionally decking will fall outside permitted development (where no planning permission is needed) if it is more than 30cm above ground or is on land forward of a wall forming the principle elevation.

Choosing your decking

There are two main types of decking to choose from - Timber, and Composite - and the one that is best for you may depend on the area to be decked, or just on personal preferences. We’ve previously explored the difference between softwood timber decking and composite which gives you some insight into the differences when it comes to materials.

If you yearn for timber, the Q-Deck Canterbury Style decking will be ideal. It’s made from high quality certified softwood (Scandinavian Redwood for those in the know), and its smooth side provides a modern look which is easy to maintain.

Want a great choice of colours and styles? Composite could be the way to go. Trex Transcend Deck board comes in a range of finishes and sizes making it a great choice for those who want to put in place the popular grey decking style, or for those who want to prioritise longevity - with composite decking resistant to fade, stain, rot & split, the benefits are worth considering.

Making decking a safe space

For many with a growing family or even curious pets, creating a fenced off deck area provides a safer environment. Where you may be building a raised deck, this is even more essential to avoid falls.

Create deck fencing around your space by adding base rails, handrails, and fitting spindles in between to keep your decking safe for all users. 

Keep your decking ship-shape

While choosing high quality decking will ensure longevity, it’s still important to look after your decking. Whilst timber decking normally comes pre-treated, if you are cutting the timber, be aware this will leave untreated ends.

For general maintenance, sweep your decking regularly with a stiff broom and hot water to avoid debris collecting within the grooves, and to avoid mould. Additionally, treating your decking with appropriate oils or paint will help to avoid damage both to the structure and help preserve the colour of your decking.

Whatever your dream for your garden getaway, make it a reality with Alsford Timber.