How to Decorate Your Garden With Stone Seats and Tables
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Published by TOP4 Team
Stone might not appear to be an obvious choice as a material for creating garden furniture, but there is a tremendous scope for using its strength, durability and rugged natural appearance to create seats and tables. These seats and tables can be a permanent part of the landscape, even when they are not being used for their primary purpose. Here’s what you should know about installing seats and tables in your garden.
Building stone seats
If you have ever walked in the countryside and have looked for a natural seat to rest on from time to time, it will take relatively little imagination to transplant that welcome shelf of stone bench – perhaps a ledge at the side of a sheltering cave. Stones were probably early man’s first seat, and the fact that many stones split naturally into manageable slabs along their bedding planes makes the construction of simple garden seats a relatively straightforward task.
The comfort factor
Unless a stone seat has been warmed up by standing in full sunlight for an hour or so, it’s likely to be cold and potentially a damp place to sit in. You can overcome this either by making individual slatted timber panels to suit each seat, or by making seat cushions. You can leave the former outside as long as they are made from preservative-treated timber; meanwhile, you should cover the latter with waterproof fabric, even if they are brought out only when they are required, to counteract any dampness in the stone. Latex foam is the ideal cushion filling for this situation, since it is moisture-resistant.
Building stone tables
Building stone garden tables is a variation of the simple beach principle. The basic ingredient is a single stone acting as a table top. This can either be roughly-hewn and irregularly-shaped slab of sandstone or limestone, or a more highly-finished piece of slate or marble. It all depends on the visual effect you want to achieve and on what type of stone is most readily available locally.
Using loosing stone
There’s no substitute for large flat slabs when it comes to forming the working surfaces of garden seats and tables, but there’s no reason why you should not build up their supports using small individual stones (rather than more massive monoliths). This particularly applies to supports for tables, where you can build up end or corner supports as columns or panels of masonry bonded together with mortar. However, it’s wise if you incorporate some form of internal reinforcement within the support to withstand lateral movement, since the tabletop itself is still likely to be fairly massive and a collapse of the supports could have serious consequence.
When decorating your garden, seek the help of gardening professionals.