Can you put garden furniture on grass?

Monterey Dove Grey 2 Seater Double Cocoon lifestyle 1200x600

It’s so wonderful to sit outdoors on high quality garden furniture and enjoy the nice British weather in the summer. What’s more, the right outdoor furniture can lend an air of style and sophistication to your perfect outdoor oasis. The most tempting place to put your furniture is out on your lush, well-kept lawn, but is this the best place for it? Whether you want to relax on a lounge set, entertain around a dining set or kick back on a recliner, you might be wondering where is the best place in the garden to locate your furniture? Or can you put garden furniture on grass?

In short, it isn’t recommended to leave garden furniture on a lawned area, for several reasons. You may damage the grass, the furniture, or indeed the person sitting on the furniture. When it comes to designing your ideal outdoor oasis bear these 3 points in mind:

1. Damage to the furniture

Grass contains a high moisture content stemming from the amount of rain and dew we experience in the UK. This is one of the reasons our grass in the UK is a bright, lush green colour, but it can be detrimental to your patio furniture. If you’ve invested a lot of money in your outdoor furniture, you wouldn’t be too happy to see damp stains, splitting, rot, mould or rust appear. If furniture has been allowed to sink into the lawn, then you can also add muddy stains into the mix, which are a real challenge to remove, particularly from wooden furniture.

Wooden furniture will be most affected as it quickly absorbs water and dirt. Although metal furniture doesn’t split and mould in the same way, over time some of it can rust if left out on the lawn for extended periods. The exception to this is aluminium furniture, which doesn’t rust at all. In theory aluminum furniture could be put on the lawn, but we would advise against permanently locating most patio furniture on a grassy area for the following reasons:

2. Damage to the grass

Damage to the furniture isn’t the only problem you’ll encounter with leaving furniture on grass. Garden furniture will very soon ruin your perfectly-tended lawn. Thinner legged furniture can sink into the grass, even on a relatively warm day, creating little sink-holes around the garden which could turn it into a muddy quagmire in next-to-no-time.

Larger garden furniture might seem like it could be the solution here, but in fact this creates its own problems on the lawn. Flattening and discolouring the grass if it isn’t moved regularly, larger pieces of furniture, whether heavy or light, prevents the sunlight and air from reaching the grass. This will eventually kill the lawn in patches, leaving behind those tell-tale straw-coloured patches of dead grass.

What can you do to bring the grass back to life? With a bit of TLC, and regular watering, the yellowed grass will revive, but holes in the lawn are little more difficult to resolve. Prevention is much better than cure in both instances.

3. Damage to the person using the furniture

But it isn’t just the grass and furniture which can be damaged. Sitting on a chair on a lawn poses all sorts of problems for people. The lawn will most likely be uneven, leading to an unbalanced and unstable seating experience. Not only do people find a wobbly seat unpleasant to sit in, but this can also cause a chair to tip over. No-one wants to see their favourite aunt languishing on the floor after a furniture-related fail. Getting out of an unbalanced chair can also prove problematic, especially for people with reduced mobility.  Added to this, the legs can sink into the soft ground, causing further problems. A wobbly table is just as annoying.

Alexander Rose Roble Broadfield Bench lifestyle 1200x660
Alexander Rose Roble Broadfield Bench 

Can you safely locate garden furniture on a lawn?

There are some circumstances when it is ok to locate garden furniture on a lawn. For short periods of time, in the very height of summer, when the ground is hard, you could do it if you take these precautions:

1. Furniture designed for use on grass

There is some furniture which is specifically designed to be used on grass for short periods of time. Firstly, sun loungers and reclining chairs. An elegant way to spread out supine by the pool and soak up some rays, these ultra-comfortable items also cut an elegant shape on a decent lawn too. They do a good job of spreading the weight of the user over a larger surface area, either by having several sets of legs with foot protectors, or by having U-shaped legs that won’t sink into the grass.

Easy to pack away and store flat at the end of an afternoon, loungers and recliners are available in a range of attractive colours and styles, with options to suit any budget. insider tip: look for loungers with thick seat pads, head cushions and breathable fabric for optimum user comfort. Once folded most loungers and recliners are easily portable, so can be taken to the beach, to the park, on camping trips, or anywhere else you’d like to use them.

Good quality Swing Seats and Cocoon Chairs, such as the ones made by British furniture brand Bramblecrest have weather-resistant powder coated bases which are designed to spread the weight of the furniture. The furniture is fine to locate on either a lawn or somewhere else flat due to the way their weather-proof legs spread weight. Insider tip: if you put them on a lawn we would recommend moving them on a weekly basis, so as not to damage the grass underneath.

Good quality wooden benches such as the outdoor furniture from the Alexander Rose brand can also be located on lawn. This furniture is very sturdy and resistant to moisture. During the summer months when the ground is hard, this furniture can be placed on a turfed area. If left in one place, it will affect the lawn directly beneath its feet, but if you move it weekly this won’t be a problem. Alternatively, if you don’t move the bench, you won’t be greeted by it. insider tip: store away from the lawn during the autumn and winter months to prevent too much moisture ingress.

2. Protecting a lawn from larger furniture

If you have larger and heavier furniture, for instance a table, there are a couple of options you could try to prevent damage to a lawn from its legs. Neither of these options should be used as long-term solutions though.

The Weber Floor Protection Mat is designed to prevent damage to the ground from barbecues, but it can equally be purposed for use under garden furniture, where it will prevent the lawn from getting damaged by thin table legs sinking into the grass. Insider tip: It is available in two handy sizes, regular and large, so check the size of the table in advance and choose the size that fits the dimensions of the table.

An alternative temporary measure to prevent thin table legs sinking into a lawn is to place spare paving slabs underneath the feet. This won’t work for chairs as they need to freely move around but is a good cost-effective solution for a larger table if you have some spare slabs.

Note, that both these options should only be used on a temporary basis (eg, one afternoon/evening at a time) as they are guaranteed to cut off the air and light to your lawn after prolonged contact, causing damage to the grass.

3. Place something under the feet of smaller furniture

We have heard of all sorts of DIY solutions for going about this, which range from slicing tennis balls in half and placing the slices under your chair legs, to cutting the bottom off plastic bottles to use as chair feet. We wouldn’t trust either of these wonky-sounding solutions, as we’re sure you’d end of with a wobblier chair than you started with.

We recommend using the furniture castor cups that are available for indoor furniture which you can buy from good hardware shops. Designed to protect interior floors, these cups spread the weight over a larger surface area and do a great job of stopping your furniture from sinking into the grass (as long as it’s a warm and dry day). They are available in an astounding range of designs, sizes and colours, so it should be possible to find some you like. We still would advise you only use these for short periods to stop them from damaging the grass underneath.

Where in the garden should you locate outdoor furniture?

For a permanent location, we recommend finding somewhere with good drainage so that your furniture will not get damaged, that is also hardy, so the surface itself will not suffer damage from the furniture. and that presents as a relatively level surface.

LIFE Nevada Lava Mini Corner Lounge Set lifestyle 450x450
LIFE Nevada Lava Mini Corner Lounge Set
Bramblecrest La Rochelle Mini Modular Set with Rectangular Adjustable Table lifestyle 450x450
Bramblecrest La Rochelle Mini Modular Set with Rectangular Adjustable Table
Hartman Berkeley Bench in Maize with Wheatgrass Cushion lifestyle 450x450
Hartman Berkeley Bench in Maize with Wheatgrass Cushion

The following areas make good locations for outdoor furniture:

  • Patio – Arguably the very best place for garden furniture, a patio is an ideal location because water doesn’t accumulate on the surface so your furniture will be safe, and the slabs will be relatively safe from damage by the furniture. As it’s a hard surface, there is no danger of the furniture sinking into it, so it should provide level and safe seating. Insider tip: it’s a hot trend to have more than one patio around the garden, perhaps with a dining set close to the house, and a lounge set in a sunny or shady spot elsewhere. Or you could mix it up and do the opposite, the choice is yours.
  • Decking – making a great style statement, an area of raised decking is also a good place to house garden furniture. With drainage between the gaps of the planks, you can ensure that your furniture won’t be sitting in water, and it is strong enough to support large and heavy garden furniture as well as being safe for dining chairs. Insider tip: just make sure the legs don’t get stuck between the planks.
  • Gravel – Gravelled areas in the garden can be particularly striking, especially when contrasted against a well-tended lawn or flowerbed. As well as fitting the bill visually, everyone loves the audible crunch of walking across gravel. Suiting both traditional and contemporary garden designs, gravel is another solution which provides adequate drainage for garden furniture, whilst it is also hardy. Therefore gravel is another good location for garden furniture.  Insider tip: furniture can sink into gravel a little unevenly, so care needs to be taken to make sure furniture is level.
  • Artificial grass – Looking just as green and lush as real turf, but without some of its drawbacks, artificial grass is a very good place to locate garden furniture. Artificial grass drains well, so there are no issues with water accumulation, and your garden furniture should be safe on it. Also, when the fake lawn is laid, the ground underneath should be prepared and flattened, so when furniture sits on the artificial lawn there is less risk of wonky, wobbly furniture. Astroturf is much easier to look after than real grass and it won’t turn into a muddy swamp after heavy use. Some garden furniture might have sharp edges on its legs or underside which could tear the turf, but as long as the furniture doesn’t have sharp edges, artificial lawn makes a great place to keep and use garden furniture. Insider tip: choose artificial lawn with the thickest backing for most protection against damage.
Supremo Leisure Melbury Mini Modular Square Firepit Set lifestyle 1200x600
Supremo Leisure Melbury Mini Modular Square Firepit Set

Whilst we wouldn’t recommend using outdoor furniture on grass for most of the time, there are some options available to you if you want to use garden furniture in short bursts on the lawn, whether you opt to protect the lawn in some way or you are using furniture which is specifically designed to spread the weight of the user (such as a Recliner, Sun lounger or Swing Seat Cocoon). Instead, we advise locating your furniture on a patio, decked area or amongst gravel, so that neither the furniture nor the lawn get ruined, and the user remains safe.

Whatever garden design you settle upon, if you have any questions or concerns you would like answering, then please contact our knowledgeable and helpful Outdoor Living Team, either by visiting us instore, contacting us by telephone on 01664 454309 or by shopping online for home delivery or collection from our Leicestershire store.

Shopping Basket
Scroll to Top