Fire Pits

There is something mesmerising and comforting about a camp fire. It’s where food is prepared, marshmallows are toasted and some of life’s most contentious and philosophical topics are discussed; Who will win the next grand final? Where will you be spending the next Christmas holidays? What makes you…well…you? Fire pits are a great way to enjoy the comfort of your very own camp fire in your very own backyard.

Perfect for small, intimate spaces suitable for a small group of friends or some solo time.

Perfect for small, intimate spaces suitable for a small group of friends or some solo time.

Fire pits come in all shapes and sizes. For the compact backyard a small, portable, fire pit will allow you to enjoy a social event around the fire while providing the flexibility of moving the pit out of the way if/when needed. This is also the perfect solution if you are renting.

If you have a little more room to move this next example shows what you can achieve while still retaining flexibility….

Architecturally considered and implemented within the landscape design.

Architecturally considered and implemented within the landscape design.

This fire pit has been considered in the overall vision for the landscape design. The sunken lounge effect provides the perfect focal point for a beautiful fire pit that moonlights as a sculptural element. Comfortable seating invites you to enjoy the company of family and friends around the friendly fire while the impermanent structure affords you the ability to relocate the fire pit when required. Move it into the corner for your next cocktail party and fill it with ice to keep the drinks chilled.

Not all spaces require that type of flexibility. If you’ve got room to spare an outdoor fire place adds a little more luxury to your great outdoor. While the option to relocate the fire place is now redundant, it does make for a beautiful feature and backdrop within your landscape design.

Outdoor luxury in your very own backyard.

Outdoor luxury in your very own backyard.

It really doesn’t matter what the temperature is. A crackling fire, insert-preferred-beverage-here and the company of my family and friends are right up there at the top of my list of things to do after a hard week at work. As I’ve mentioned a fire pit itself can be a small, functional metal dish, a permanent structure or anything in between. It is a great space to socialise with friends, family and neighbours. Speaking of the neighbours…

Toasting marshmallows with the neighbours is a great way to get to know each other.

Toasting marshmallows with the neighbours is a great way to get to know each other.

Remember to invite your neighbours to enjoy your fire pit with you! If they can’t make it let them know that you’ll be cooking up a storm on the fire pit that evening. Enable them to feel comfortable enough to let you know if too much smoke from your fire pit is concerning them. You just never know if your smoke will cause a hazard to another’s health and well being. A little consideration will go a long way. In fact, anyone affected by the smoke from your fire pit can lodge a complaint with the local council. While all councils vary, here are some fairly consistent guidelines:

  • you can only light a backyard fire if it is contained (ie fire pit), the flames are small, there is no smoke and the fire is for the purpose of heating and/or cooking.

  • in some councils areas the size of your property will determine if you can have a contained fire burning.

  • burning a fire 2m wide in any direction is prohibited throughout Queensland.

  • don’t burn green waste, wet items or household garbage. This will only result in toxic smoke. Take it to your local dump instead.


So what can you do minimise disruption and maximise the fun?

  • check with your local council regulations.

  • burn only dry wood, heat beads or eco timber.

  • talk to your neighbours and let them know you’ll be burning a small, contained, fire for warming or cooking purposes. Then go one better and invite them along!

You will be spending many happy hours around that fire. To get a better understanding of what fire pit solution will work best for you, and to minimise any chances of a knock on the door from your local council, contact your Landscape Architect and get it right the first time.

Images: #1 Jim Henkens, #2, #3 Joe Fletcher, #4 Sweet Victory, #5 Backyard Gardening