Choosing the right garden furniture can be difficult and the biggest choice is probably which material would be best for your needs, wood or plastic?
The popularity of garden furniture that has been made from recycled materials has risen in the last few years due to the fact that they look great and help the environment by saving natural resources. These may therefore be the obvious choice for the environmentally friendly gardening fanatics out there.
A lot of people hold the view that because the furniture is made from recycled materials they are better for the environment than wooden furniture but this might not be the case. Energy is required for both the sourcing, production and distribution of furniture made from recycled plastic. The environmentally friendly alternatives of garden furniture are often actually worse than its ‘un-environmentally’ rivals.
Hardwood garden and outdoor furniture, such as summer houses, can be equally, if not more so environmentally sustainable than their recycled plastic counterparts. Wood, sourced from local and sustainable resources, can not only provide a renewable resource, but, the forests created also provide valuable habitats for wildlife.
Hardwood garden furniture is timeless and can be manufactured in almost any style. Whereas, the production of recycled plastic garden and outdoor furniture relies on moulds. Moulds are costly and time consuming to produce. The fact that the cost a lot and take so much time to produce means that there is only a very limited variety of plastic furniture that it available to consumers.
Recycled plastic garden furniture may look great when you first buy it but they’re known for losing their colour when constantly exposed to light. So although they look good to begin with they probably aren’t worth the money considering how often they will need to be replaced.
Cost may further be a decisive factor. A common misconception is that recycled plastic garden furniture is cheaper than the hardwood options. However, the prices of the wooden products are actually similar if not cheaper than the plastic ones. You may want to consider paying more for the hardwood furniture anyway because of how long it lasts. Paying a little more and it lasting much longer clearly cancels out the overpayment that you’ll make on many sets of plastic furniture.
You have to consider comfort too; wooden chairs look great in any garden and they’re available in almost any style that you like. They can be fitted with cushions and back rests and can cope with being left out in the sun. Plastic furniture on the other hand doesn’t always feel sturdy meaning that people don’t feel comfortable when sat in them.
This article was written by Lee Shaw, a fan of hardwood garden furniture and in particular wooden summer houses.