Autumn Garden Ideas & Inspirations: Preparing Your Paradise
As the air turns cool, the days grow shorter, and the colour of the leaves starts to change, you may wonder how to keep your garden beautiful and functional throughout the autumn season. Gardens can often go neglected and start to look barren in the colder months. However, with the help of these lovely autumn garden ideas, you can fully embrace the season and reinvigorate your garden into a haven of cosy gatherings and fall colours.
Read on for some helpful planting tips, fun decorating suggestions, and gorgeous garden furniture ideas like cosy seating, creative lighting, and warm firepits. We'll explore ways to create an inviting outdoor space that radiates the warmth and charm of this truly enchanting time of year.
1. Install Warm Wall Lights
As the days grow shorter, you’ll want plenty of outdoor lighting that will encourage you to spend evenings outside on your patio or in the garden.
String lights are one option, and while those always add a romantic touch, wall sconces are a more permanent and durable choice. Wall lights add powerful ambient lighting that can illuminate a whole patio to make the space look warmer and create a glowing atmosphere in your garden during cold evenings.
2. Create a Wildlife-Friendly Garden
Photo by Aaron J Hill
Help local wildlife prepare for winter by leaving out bird feeders, bird baths, and local, insect-friendly plants. Not only will you attract wildlife to your garden, but you’ll also encourage biodiversity in your area.
For birds in particular, autumn is a crucial time to find food. Keep your bird feeder full of seeds in your autumn garden, and you’ll get to enjoy the beauty of visiting winged friends throughout the season.
3. LED Mood Light Pergolas
Light up the night with an LED mood light pergola. These modern pergolas provide gentle, customisable illumination and create a captivating atmosphere for evening gatherings. Set the mood with soft lighting in all different colours to complement the season's cosy vibe.
Some garden parasols also include LED lights to up the ambience of your space even further.
4. Gather Around a Firepit Table
No activity signals the beginning of fall quite like gathering around a firepit. Roasting marshmallows, warming your hands, and telling stories with loved ones around the crackling fire is a classic way to embrace the cool weather and welcome the new season.
When it’s time to start setting out your autumn décor, incorporate rich, earthy tones like deep reds, warm oranges, and rustic browns into your garden. This colour palette embraces the spirit of autumn and complements the changing leaves.
This can be as simple as swapping out your scatter cushions and blankets for ones that feel more autumnal. Or, if you like a good DIY project, you can paint some ceramic pots and then plant potted foliage that adds even more fall colours, like deep purples, to the mix.
6. Include Cosy Seating Areas
When the temperature drops and summer turns to autumn, it can be the perfect time to invest in an ultra-cosy garden sofa set. One of these spacious, plush furniture pieces is sure to add a hint of luxury to your autumn garden. Complete the space with nearby outdoor heaters and lighting. Then, add plush cushions and throw blankets so the whole family can sit outside and enjoy extra comfort during cooler autumn evenings.
If you want to check out even more seating setups, check out our list of stylish garden seating ideas.
7. Mulch and Prepare for Winter
Photo by Alfo Medeiros
As autumn progresses, you’ll need to clean up the fallen leaves and then mulch your garden beds to protect your plants from the cold. This essential autumn task helps insulate roots, retain soil moisture, and prepare your garden for the challenges of the winter weather to come.
8. Autumn Foliage Displays
If you want to add larger plants to your garden that will look stunning in autumn, choose shrubs and trees known for their striking autumn foliage. Examples include Japanese maple, smokebush, and warm-coloured ornamental grasses. As your trees and shrubs grow, you can even use them to create table centrepiece displays with their colourful autumn leaves, branches, and berries.
9. Get Warm Under a Heated Pergola
We’re big fans of modern pergola ideas, and a heated pergola is a wonderful addition to your autumn garden setup.
These high-tech pergolas protect your seating or dining area from the rain and sun during the spring and summer months. During autumn and winter, the simple addition of a pergola heater can extend the usability of your garden and let you sit outside in warmth. Because these structures provide both shelter and heat, they are ideal for hosting gatherings on chilly autumn nights.
10. Dine Around the Fire
Turn your garden into a cosy outdoor dining room with an outdoor dining table and built-in firepit. You and your guests or family members will enjoy hearty autumn meals while basking in the warmth and ambience of the flames right in the centre of the table.
11. Plant Autumn-Flowering Bulbs
Photo by Jonathan Kemper
Late spring through summer is the time to get started on your autumn gardening. Plant autumn-flowering bulbs like daffodils, crocuses, snowdrops, and cyclamen for vibrant blooms that will add colour and delight to your garden throughout the autumn season.
Autumn is also the perfect time to think ahead and plant bulbs that will burst into bloom during the following spring. Consider flowers like tulips to add vibrant, warm-weather hues to your garden once winter fades.
12. Snuggle Up With Outdoor Throw Blankets
Keep warm outside during chilly evenings by providing soft outdoor throw blankets for you and your guests. These add both comfort and style to your garden seating setup. Whether it’s a formal outdoor dining table or casual sofa set, your outdoor seating area will benefit from some blankets to keep everyone comfortable.
13. Enjoy a Warm Drink at a Firepit Bar
Want to spend your autumn evenings in luxury? Consider a firepit bar set for your patio, deck, or balcony.
You’ll sit at the bar, turn on the firepit, and watch the stars come out. Make sure to keep a selection of hot beverages on hand so you can sip on cider, mulled wine, or hot chocolate while warming up and socialising around the fire.
If you want to take your firepit experience to the next level, consider a modern firepit table. You and your family can gather around the table to dine and converse, watching the flames dance as you sit back on a cushiony sofa. A firepit table not only provides warmth but also serves as a convenient focal point for social gatherings. A firepit table can feel especially cosy when you add throw blankets and plenty of pillows to snuggle up with around the fire.
For even more firepit inspiration, check out our list of garden firepit ideas.
14. Decorate with Pumpkins and Gourds
Photo by Maria Orlova
Looking for autumn display ideas? Use pumpkins, gourds, and other seasonal vegetables as decorative pieces in your garden. They’ll quickly add a festive touch and seasonal charm to your outdoor space.
15. Add Heaters
Heaters are a must if you want to enjoy time outside in your autumn garden.
Freestanding patio heaters provide consistent warmth, allowing you to make the most of your space well into winter. Other outdoor heaters, like ones that you can install on an overhang ceiling, can also be great options. With heaters installed well ahead of autumn, you won’t have to worry about guests getting cold when sitting out on your patio.
16. Cover the Outdoor Kitchen
If you have an outdoor kitchen or outdoor cooking setup, autumn is the ideal time to protect it from the elements. Consider adding weatherproof covers to shield your appliances, countertops, and grill from rain and frost. This simple step will extend the life of your outdoor kitchen and keep it in prime condition for next year's alfresco cooking adventures.
Structures (such as pergolas) that act as shade in the summer can double as a shelter for your outdoor kitchen in the fall.
17. Grow Autumn Vegetables
Want to make the most of your fall garden and harvest delicious veggies that you can use in the kitchen? Consider cultivating an autumn vegetable plot.
Wondering what to plant in autumn in the UK? Look into vegetables such as kale, spinach, carrots, radishes, turnips, and mustard leaf. These cold-hardy vegetables thrive in the autumn and offer fresh, nutritious additions to your meals.
Not only will autumn gardening encourage you to spend more time outside, but it can also help you gain a new appreciation of your outdoor space in the colder seasons.
18. Place Fall Lanterns
Enhance the atmosphere of your autumn garden with decorative lanterns. The soft glow of unique outdoor lanterns can help light up the space and add a touch of elegance to your outdoor décor. Plus, they’re easily portable, so you can move them around whenever you please.
19. Invest in All-Weather Fabric
As the weather turns cooler and wetter, it's essential to choose outdoor furniture that’s both comfortable and resilient. If you’re on the hunt for new seating, make sure to invest in all-weather fabric for your cushions and furniture. These materials are designed to withstand autumn's occasional drizzles and chilly breezes, ensuring that your outdoor seating remains flawless for a long time to come.
To extend the life of your furniture even more, make sure to use furniture covers when there’s inclement weather and consider placing your seating area under a fixed structure like an overhang or a pergola.
20. DIY an Autumn Wreath
Photo by Erik Mclean
Add even more seasonal charm to your garden by making your own autumn wreath. Gather a variety of dried leaves, pinecones, and other natural materials from your outdoor space to create a customisable decoration that celebrates your autumn garden.
Hang your wreath on your gate or front door to welcome guests with a warm greeting. A handmade wreath is a delightful way to add a personal touch to your home this season.
Don’t neglect your garden this autumn. With a bit of inspiration, you’ll unlock the potential of your outdoor space even as the air turns crisp and the leaves start falling.
We hope these UK garden decoration ideas will help you prepare your garden for autumn. We truly believe that your outdoor living space can be just as enchanting in fall as it is any other time of the year.
Harbour Lifestyle has your back when adding modern firepits and luxurious seating areas to your space. We’re here to help you fall in love with your outdoor space all over again, no matter the season. Browse our collections of garden furniture, sofa sets, and more today.