Best in show: Everything in the garden’s lovely

Summer is most definitely upon us and if you haven’t already done so, it’s high time you turned your attention to your outside space. Whether it’s a tiny scrap of land or acres of rolling lawns, get the basics right and your garden will shine whatever the weather is.

It’s always worth keeping one eye on the other side of the Atlantic when it comes to alfresco dining, because they are way ahead of us in terms of barbecuing trends. Americans have had long been obsessed with the type of charcoal or wood they cook with, because different types impart different flavours to the meat. It’s an idea that is taking off over here, too. You will find every type of fuel imaginable  in different flavours  from just £3. And it tells you which ones work well for what cuts of meat.

Meanwhile, Devon-based barbecue obsessive David Wright, who turned his hobby into a business, says this summer’s big seller is a simple aluminium barbecue by Danish brand Dancook. Wright also says he’s noticed a big increase in the demand for smokers, which are essentially barbecues with lids, ideal for use all year round (from £89.99), as well as rotisseries, which people are buying to stick over their barbecues. “It’s the easy option,” he says. “It’s really hard to burn meat on a rotisserie so you can sit back and have glass of wine while it cooks.

This summer there’s a feeling of whatever we do indoors, we can do outdoors, too. So just as there was a trend a while back for creating feature walls within the home, it’s now a big trend for outside. Hence we see a rise in the number of companies selling outdoor tiles. Habibi is good for a range of traditional handcrafted Moroccan ones.Or you can add a splash of colour to existing walls using Farrow & Ball’s fabulous exterior masonry range, which has a palette of over 100 colours.

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