Create a better ambiance for your alfresco soirees this summer with The Resident’s pick of fantastic fire pits and wood-burning stoves for your garden
1 Komodo Linear fire pit
If you have the space, divide up your garden into different ‘room’ zones for everything from cooking to chilling. Komodo 84 fire pit in bronze powder coat with dark grey river rock, from £5,100, paloform.com
2 Morsø Kamino Miljo outdoor fireplace
This Morsø Kamino Miljo outdoor fireplace is built from cast iron and as a result can stand prolonged amounts of time left in the garden or on the patio. Use it right through from spring to autumn to keep warm when outside. Available from Natural Fires (call for prices)
3 Bathyscafocus steel pivoting hearth
Make an outdoor terrace user-friendly whatever the weather by installing a wood-burning stove that also doubles up as a useful grill. Bathyscafocus steel pivoting hearth, £6,684, focus-fireplaces.com
4 Graham & Green Cast-iron fire bowl
Add outdoor lights and a fire pit to make your relaxing zone work long into those summer nights… Kajito bamboo hammock (with two covers), £499; Festoon large Squirrel lights, £70; cast-iron fire bowl, £110; vinyl mats, from £155 each, all grahamandgreen.co.uk
5 Morsø Forno outdoor wood-burning stove
The Morsø Forno outside wood-burning stove, which is shaped like an Italian stone oven. The shallow firebox produces optimum heat and has plenty of space for fire wood to be pushed aside when it’s time to cook. £1,495 from Natural Fires
wood-burning stoves FAQ
Why are wood-burning stoves proving so popular with Londoners?
Because of the look and the ambience that they create. Lots of people like to have a real fire, but in London you’re not allowed to burn wood unless you have a DEFRA-approved wood burner, which means it burns more efficiently and produces less smoke. In the countryside, if you have a traditional open fireplace and you burn wood or coal, 70-75% of the heat produced goes straight up the chimney. Modern stoves are safer and more efficient.
Are wood-burning stoves more efficient than gas fires?
It’s pretty similar in terms of efficiency but gas prices are rising. I have one at home and I use my central heating a lot less now. You can just light it in the evening and it heats the room that you’re actually using, rather than paying to heat the whole house. Plus the body of the stove retains its heat, so the room stays warmer for longer.
Do you need to have a chimney?
You don’t have to have a chimney, but you do have to have an outside wall so that you can route an insulated flue system. If you live in a block of flats then it’s going to be difficult, but you could have a flueless gas stove, which doesn’t require an outlet.
What are your most popular brands?
Our top brands are Morsø, Jøtul and Contura, which are Scandinavian companies. They’re good quality, cast-iron and steel stoves, made to last a generation. We also stock British brands like Jetmaster, Hunter and Fireline, but many of my customers prefer the Scandinavian brands, since they’re cold countries and wood is a traditional heat source. Our entry level stove is the Fireline FP5 for £619 and at the higher end of the scale you have the Jøtul F163 a real designer piece, which is £1,939.72.
Can you burn any wood?
These stoves are made to burn seasoned wood with less than 20% moisture content. If you just chop down a tree, you have to season it and store it properly, otherwise it doesn’t burn efficiently. Some people really do get into collecting and seasoning their own wood, but I’d advise Londoners to just go out and buy some good quality kiln-dried wood!
Can you toast marshmallows on them?
You could, in theory, but since it’s a contained environment that burns off its own smoke and gasses, opening the door stops that process and the efficiency drops, so I wouldn’t advise it. But I do know people who will wrap a jacket potato in foil, pop it in the stove among the embers and close the door again!