Ten steps to… improve your garden: How to build a fire pit
A great way to improve your garden is by installing a fire pit, which is actually a lot easier then it looks.
One sure fire way to make your garden more cosy in the evenings is by building your very on fire pit. But what exactly is a fire pit? Well, essentially, it’s a big hole in your garden that you burn wood in.
With a steady hand and a bucket of cement you can have your very own fire pit for next to nothing.
What you’ll need:
Fire bricks for the wall
Decorative tiles/bricks for the top
Step 1: Plan your pit
The first step involves you going out to the back garden and planning out where exactly you want your pit and how big you want it. You can also decide on whether you want your fire pit raised or flush with the ground (however, having it flush with the ground involves a bit more digging).
You should also decide if you want a square or circular pit. Whatever shape you decide on just remember it’s best to have your pit two-bricks thick for added protection. Once you’ve decided what exactly you want, you can get down to the dirty work.
Step 2: Start your foundations
Make sure to cut around the surrounding edges of our pit as straight as possible and roll up the grass as if it was carpet. This is a job for your shovel. Once you have the top layer of grass off you can can move onto the drainage.
Step 3: Dig a hole in your pit
You won’t want water filling up your fire pit, so dig a 12-inch hole in the middle of your pit and fill it with pea-gravel (those tiny pebbles). Add some sand on top of this to allow for drainage to the soil below.
Make sure to use plenty of sand and pebbles afterwards for the best possible drainage
Step 4: Place the base layer
Now it’s time to add the base layer of bricks for your pit. You’re best off taking a dry run first so you won’t run into any problems when it’s too late. Make sure to leave a 1cm gap between each brick so you can apply cement to them once you have them set exactly where you want them.
Step 5: Mix the cement
Now that you have the majority of your pit ready you can begin to prep the cement. Follow the instructions on the back of the cement packet and don’t forget to mix it in a bucket that you don’t mind throwing out after. Alternatively you could rent a cement mixer.
Step 6: Set the bottom bricks
It’s time to set the bottom bricks in place. Join them together with the cement.
Step 7: Set the rest of your bricks
Once the bottom layer of bricks is set you can begin stacking up the rest of your pit. You should know by now how tall you want the pit, so just make sure you have enough bricks. When laying bricks, make sure to off set each layer for greater support.
Step 8: Apply decorative tiles
Once the walls of your pit are set you can place the decorative tiles or bricks on top of the pit. These really make your pit stand out so make sure not to get them filthy with cement or other dirt. Clean as you go and make sure they’re positioned as straight as can be.
Step 9: Cover the bottom
Your pit isn’t bottomless so you’ll want to over the bottom of it with whatever pea-gravel and sand you have left. When you clean out your pit you’ll more than likely take some sand out too, so best to have a little sand storage area out the back garden just for your pit.
Step 10: Fill your pit
Once the concrete has set, you can finally fill your fire pit with wood, light it and relax. You can now stay cosy in your garden on those chilly nights. There is some cleaning involved with fire pits, but once you stay on top of it it won’t be a hassle.