For the latest research shows that a desire for low maintenance gardens has seen a surge in the laying of synthetic turf along with building larger patios and putting down concrete and tarmac.
Industry figures show that out of the 86per cent of homes in the UK with gardens, as many as three in four have removed part of the original lawn as Britons develop a taste for al fresco living and demand a larger outdoor entertaining space.
The study highlights the fact that today’s garden trends increasingly flout the image of England’s green and pleasant land as described by poet William Blake.
Catalogue and online store Studio.co.uk carried out a survey among its customers after finding that people were spending more on accessories and furniture for patios than they were on plants and other gardening products.
Eight out of ten of home owners admitted to revamping their outdoor space in the past five years.
This trend to make more use of our open air environment, has resulted in a dramatic rise in demand for garden furniture, sun loungers, parasols, barbecues, gazebos, ornaments and chimineas according to the low priced retailer.
Seventy-three per cent said they owned rattan style furniture or loungers, 57 per cent had barbecues, 12 per cent tables with canopies while a third (34 per cent) have some form of outdoor lighting.
The report found that neighbourly get-togethers on the patio have soared at the expense of the formal dinner party. Almost nine in ten adults said they preferred entertaining guests outdoors rather than a more formal sit down meal around a dining table.
Almost half (46 per cent) of those surveyed said they would cook on the barbecue during summer months at least once a week or one in five (21 per cent) said weather permitting they would regularly eat meals outside.
Paul Kendrick, a spokesman for Studio.co.uk said: “I don’t know what William Blake who wrote those famous words would think but today more and more people are looking to create that extra room where they can eat and drink in the open air and relax in the sun as they seek to take advantage of a Mediterranean lifestyle and spend more time outdoors.
“There has been a definite change in how we use the space surrounding outside our homes.
Once the garden plants and lawn were our pride and joy, but now home owners prefer to pave over areas, lay down artificial turn or install decking as they seek to have that comfortable low maintenance living and seating area in the open air.
We can see from purchases this reflects a desire for a continental style of living.
Chelsea and England’s John Terry is one of those who has opted to replace his grass lawns and is reported to have spent £150,000 on artificial turf. Ruby Wax is another who prefers the appeal of the artificial grass while Tory MP Michael Gove is also a fan.
Source : EXPRESS