Gardens, like homes, look their best when they are decluttered. But aesthetics are not the only reason you may want to invest in garden storage. Tools, bikes, furniture and outdoor toys all need protection from both the elements and potential thieves, but can’t all be kept indoors. While many homes come with built-in garages that solve the above problems, not every place with a garden features such an easy solution. Here are 10 great ways to safely store common garden and outdoor tools and other important items.
1. Bike Storage
In a perfect world, you’d be able to conveniently store your bike at home with you, where it’s safest. But in the real world, space is often at a premium. Storing bikes outside is also more convenient – no lugging a bike up the stairs or cleaning up mud off the floor. Bike storage solutions start from simple rain covers (useful for protecting the bike from the elements, but not from thieves) and go onto more serious stuff such as bike lockers and bike sheds. If you have the space and can afford it, go for a bike shed. They are tough, resilient and some are approved by insurance companies, so can be used to store even expensive bikes.
2. Under Decking Storage
If you have raised decking in your garden, you can easily create useful built-in storage underneath. It will likely not be as large as a shed, but can still give you some extra space for storing all kinds of things. You can, of course, make the door padlock-ready so you can lock things away. Make sure you insulate it well if you’re going to be storing power tools or anything else likely to be damaged by damp coming in from either above or below. Alternatively, you can use it to store things like plant pots, etc. that just need to be tidied away, rather than protected.
3. Tool Storage
Hand tools don’t necessarily need to be stored away in a shed. They can be locked away in a designated tool storage box that can either be a standalone thing or built into a wall as a cabinet. As tools can be dangerous in the wrong hands, it’s important to keep them in a lockable box and, if possible, keep them at a height, as well, so that they are out of the reach of children.
4. Garden Sheds
The jewel in the crown of garden storage, sheds come in all shapes and sizes, as well as materials. Small plastic sheds can be used to house pretty much everything mentioned above and are a great solution for inexpensive items. If, however, you have expensive power tools in your garden, you will need a more heavy-duty solution to house them. Lawnmowers, for example, are a common target for thieves, especially more expensive models such as riding mowers (such as the ones seen here on Lawn Mower Lane). While great for mowing your lawn, they do require extra protection and plastic or wood may not do in high crime areas. You will need to invest in a serious metal shed in order to protect such valuable items.
5. Under Seating Storage
A creative solution for storing smaller stuff such as outdoor toys, ground sheets, etc. is to use storage that doubles as something else. For example, you can create garden benches that double as storage boxes (with hinged lids) or that offer open-fronted shelves underneath. This can be also done with stools.
6. Storage Boxes
Not all boxes have to double as something else. Sometimes the best solution for your garden is simply to have a storage box (vertical or horizontal) instead of a full shed. This is a great solution if you’re short on space and want to lock away essentials such as garden tools. Most garden storage boxes can be easily locked with a padlock, making them reasonably secure.
7. Rain Covers
Covering up items such as garden furniture, tools or bikes with rain covers is not a secure storage solution, but it will protect them from the elements. For items such as garden furniture that are less likely to be stolen, this may be all you need and can certainly save you money. Bikes may need extra protection so may need to be locked or chained to something on a wall or in the ground.