If you find yourself looking to spruce up your own (or another's) outdoor decor, you'll want to pick up items that are functional, aesthetically pleasing, and keep the party going well into the night.
To make that easier for you, we've researched top outdoor products and analyzed current trends to round up practical patio gifts and accessories, evaluating weatherproof qualities, longevity, and ease of use. Among our top picks are the Lettuce Grow Farmstand Planter, the Chef'n S'mores Marshmallow Roaster, and the Weber Kettle Charcoal Grill.
Lettuce Grow Farmstand
The thought of growing a vegetable garden can be both intimidating and exhilarating. Help make that process easier for your giftee with the Lettuce Grow Farmstand Planter. Depending on the size you choose (we're partial to the five-foot five-inch variation), they can grow up to 36 plants, fruits, or vegetables. The stand is self-watering and self-fertilizing, so they never have to wonder if they've properly tended to their garden each day. They'll utilize 95 percent less water than traditional gardening, and it is crafted with ocean-bound plastic recovered from coastal communities, making it the perfect environmentally-friendly gift.
All of the gear you need is included in the set, including a water pump, power chord, time, plant food, and pH testing kit to keep your plants bountiful and healthy. Users claim that the setup instructions are super detailed and helpful. Some also shared that their first harvest happened in about one week's time, so they could enjoy the fruits of their labor quickly and with minimal effort. While definitely expensive, this splurge is worth it for a space-saving garden without the manual labor.
Price at time of publish: $399
Chef'n S'mores Roaster
Nothing says outdoor fun more than roasting marshmallows by the fire. For some, however, building a fire pit in their yard might not be a feasible option. That's when having a chic s'mores roaster comes in clutch. Its white ceramic top and wooden base sit at just above eight inches wide and 5 inches high, meaning it won't take up too much space on your patio table. And, while you have to supply the chocolate, marshmallows, and graham crackers, you don't need to worry about skewers, as the roaster comes with four made from stainless steel.
Price at time of publish: $50
Uncommon Goods Outdoor Wine Table
Enjoying your favorite glass of rosé while watching the kids play in the backyard can be a lot easier with this collapsing wine table. Handmade in Pennsylvania, this birch plywood stand has space for two glasses, a wine bottle, and a plate full of your favorite snacks. And while you're sipping and munching away, the fiberglass spike at the bottom means you won't have to worry about any spilled wine. Once you're ready to call it a night, simply fold the table down and tuck it away until next time.
Price at time of publish: $60
Godinger Wood Tray with Acrylic Lid
One common complaint many have at outdoor gatherings is unwanted insects floating around the food table. Yes, you can light some citronella candles, but they are not always the safest option, especially if children are running around. Instead, opt for serving your food on trays designed to keep pests away. This style comes with a wooden base and acrylic lid, the perfect size for a cake or cheese assortment. The exterior of the tray has a groove that keeps the top nestled closed, meaning no bugs get in and delicious food stays safe. Just be sure to hand wash both pieces to preserve their integrity.
Price at time of publish: $38
Weber Original Kettle Premium Charcoal Grill
No gathering is complete without an array of various grilled meats and vegetables. So, for that person who deserves a higher-priced gift, a grill might be the right fit. This editor-approved grill has a 22-inch round grate for a total of 363 square inches of cooking space, meaning each piece of food has a unique flavor that only comes with using a charcoal grill.
Price at time of publish: $233
Cuisinart Premium 10-Piece Grilling Set
Ensure the person who finds themselves tied to the grill has everything they need to keep the food coming all night long. The Cuisinart Premium Set includes ten durable stainless-steel tools with stylish PakkaWood handles that fit comfortably into their hand. They'll have a spatula for flipping, four skewers for kabobs, tongs, and a handy grill brush (plus two replacements) for cleaning the grill racks after each use. What sets this kit apart from others on the market is the sleek leather carrying case that's included.
Price at time of publish: $100
Bali Outdoors Propane Gas Fire Pit Table
Fire pits are another way to get everyone together, but it might not be something most people purchase right away. They can be a lot of upkeep, or they might not want to dig a hole in their yard to make a pit. In these instances, a table with a built-in fire pit could be the answer. This one from Bali Outdoors is 32 inches and runs on propane gas, so they never have to worry about firewood. Plus, the flames flicker through glass stones, evoking a warm and inviting atmosphere for their next gathering.
Price at time of publish: $220
West Elm Modern A Frame Outdoor Lantern
Lanterns can be a multipurpose gift that is easy to give and often undervalued when decorating a patio. They can fill up space, create a warm and intimate environment, and provide additional light when the sun goes down. These West Elm Lanterns were made specifically for outdoor use and come in four sizes, all in an antique bronze finish. The modern style can blend seemingly into any design aesthetic, so you'll feel less worried about whether or not your giftee will get use out of them. Consider gifting some candles to go inside for the extra touch.
Price at time of publish: $39+
CB2 Chuck Log Holder
If they're going to do a fire pit in their backyard, the least you can do is give them a stylish way to store their firewood. This Log Holder from CB2 is the perfect storage modality to sit in the corner of their patio. It's made with power-coated iron in an antique finish, making it the right blend of modern and classic compared to other designs of the same category. Yes, the holder is equal parts display and depository.
Price at time of publish: $129
Bose Portable Smart Speaker
Music can set the tone for any party or gathering, outdoor ones included. So, if your giftee is known for always crafting the best playlists, make sure they have a sound system that can keep up. The Bose Portable Smart Speaker syncs via BlueTooth to their device and blasts music through the air for up to 12 hours. It's also water-resistant, so no worries if the kids make a splash or two by the pool. Be sure they hook up Amazon Alexa if applicable. They can screen calls, switch playlists, and ask questions just like any other Amazon-enabled device.
Price at time of publish: $399
What to Look for in a Patio Gift
In theory, anything made for the outdoors should be able to withstand various types of weather, but that is not always the case. If you live somewhere incredibly hot, anything you give should maintain its integrity despite extreme temperatures. The same could be said for somewhere cold. By catering your gift to the environment it is in, you'll ensure it lasts a long time and gets plenty of use.
Taking into consideration the size of their patio can help determine what gift you buy. If the space is smaller, buying gifts that are larger and take up volume will only crowd the patio, often resulting in uncomfortable proximity to others during parties or get-togethers. If your recipient has more area to work with, items that seem like extra touches are worth shopping for. Things like large lanterns, sculptures, and furniture could help create balance and an environment everyone will want to spend time in.
If you know that the person you're shopping for isn't much of a cook, giving them something like a grill or grilling tools won't be a practical gift. When you're thinking of what to purchase, make sure to look at the individual you're shopping for, rather than shopping for yourself or giving what you believe to be appropriate. If they love music, choose the outdoor speaker. If there will be a lot of wining and dining, outdoor tables or serve-ware are safe options. And, when all else fails, simply ask them what they could or could not use to complete the overall look of their patio.
Why Trust The Spruce?
Samantha Parsons re-envisioned this article to include gifts that are practical, useful, and aesthetically pleasing. Hours of research (including scouring websites, reading reviews, and analyzing current trends) lead her to carefully select each of the above items. She is also currently in the process of decorating her own home, so she is hyper-aware of what fellow consumers are looking for. When she is not spending her time writing for The Spruce, Samantha works for a beauty brand and is constantly reading up on the latest product launches and design trends.