Parasols

Few things feel better than lounging in the garden on a hot, sunny afternoon under the sheltered protection of an outdoor patio umbrella. While still managing to feel the warmth of a summer breeze, you are able to protect your skin and keep the glare off of your e-reader. Pop a parasol on the garden patio, over the hot tub or above your sun lounger and enjoy all that the day has to offer for hours on end.

What are parasols used for?


Garden parasols add character and style to your garden, and work wonders for elevating and finishing the design of an outdoor patio or deck. However they have lots of other benefits too:

  • They provide protection from the sun and harmful UV rays
  • They provide shade, so you can stay cool and avoid dreaded sunburn
  • They keep your drinks cold and out of direct sunlight
  • Free-standing umbrellas can be placed anywhere in the garden
  • Your phone and e-reader will be shielded from the glare of sun and unscheduled British rain
  • They create a gathering space for meals outdoors

How do cantilever parasols work?


Cantilever parasols are designed to hang over your garden furniture, instead of sitting in the middle of them. They usually have a weighted base to keep them in place, but can also be fixed to your decking or propped against a wall. Their design means that they are more flexible in terms of placement, and means you won’t have the umbrella pole blocking your view when dining outdoors. There are several different names for the cantilever parasol including free-standing parasols, banana umbrellas and overhanging parasols.

Are garden parasols waterproof?


Not all fabric patio umbrellas are waterproof, and with the British weather being as unpredictable as it is, it’s probably best to invest in a water-resistant model. Many synthetic fibres are water-repellent and durable and less prone to damp and mould than canvas umbrellas. Make sure you check waterproof properties before making a purchase, or consider treating non-waterproof parasols with an acrylic paint coating.

What size garden umbrella do I need?


Parasols for the garden can be found in a range of sizes. If you intend to use your parasol with a garden table, use the following size guide:

  • 2 meters – seats up to 2 people
  • 2.5 metres – seats up to 4 people
  • 3 metres – seats up to 8 people
  • 4 metres – seats 10+ people

What weight parasol base do I need?


This will depend on whether you opt for a free-standing parasol or one that fits in with your garden furniture. For parasols which will be used with your garden furniture, see the following base weight guide:

  • 2 meters – 20kg
  • 2.5 metres – 25kg
  • 3 metres – 30kg
  • 4 metres – 40kg
If you opt for a cantilever parasol, you will need a heavy base regardless of size. Choose a base that is 40kg or more, to ensure it doesn’t topple over.
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