A Word About Landscape Architecture and Garden Design

Archive for February, 2012

The base Isokern “Magnum” outdoor fireplace, before stone facing is added

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Outdoor fire options

Many people love the idea of having an outdoor fire and ask me to design a “fire pit” for them.  However, to me the term “fire pit” implies that the fire is lit on the ground, usually in the donut hole of a ring of paving.  I always advise against that, because when the fire is not lit, which is nearly all the time, you are stuck with an unsightly pile of either rocks or charred wood on the ground.  For most people, the best solution is simply to purchase a beautiful ornamental iron fire bowl, which is light-weight, highly portable and can be moved wherever you feel like lighting a fire on a given day.  Many beautiful fire bowls are available, if you just search for them on-line.

For other people, a fire table is a great option, especially if you want a natural gas flame.  Fire tables are simply ways to lift the fire upt to table height, so you can sit around it.

For people with covered outdoor patios or plenty of space in the garden, an actual outdoor fireplace is a great option.  One terrific, catalog-order product is the Isokern fireplace, which is manufactured in the United States from volcanic pumice rock from a volcano in Iceland.  Isokern’s pumice blocks can withstand extremely high temperatures on the hearth side of the fire, while remaining cool on the back side.  They can be faced with any type of stone, concrete block or bricks.