Interest in landscaping has grown significantly over the course of 2020, reflected in a report from Aviva earlier this year that found that 52 per cent of home improvement projects during the first lockdown period focused on the garden. Hardly a surprise given that most of us have been spending far more time at home.

Julie Ann Lloyd, Manager at the Drainage Superstore, commented: “Decking has been a popular solution for people who want an easy-to-manage but attractive option for their garden, whether they choose low-maintenance composite decking, or prefer the earthiness of a softwood timber deck.

“While it may be tempting to choose the decking boards as the first step, it’s important to consider the area you’ll be building on. After all, for a deck to stand the test of time, homeowners and trades people need to look beyond the boards. This starts at the very base: you may wish to consider using a weed control fabric under the decking base – particularly when installing a timber deck – to ensure that nothing grows underneath the boards that might, in time, start to push through.

“A more heavy-duty option is the use of geotextiles, which can be used to prevent weed growth as well as to stabilise the ground by preventing different types of soil from mixing – this is especially important for those with sandy soils. Once the ground is suitably prepared, you’re ready for the next steps: constructing a solid substructure.

“When completely finished, a pristine deck is an impressive centrepiece for any garden or outdoor space but the success of the project lies below the surface. Ensuring you have a well-prepared sub-structure is not the most glamorous element of the job but it is just as essential as choosing the decking boards and fascias themselves.

“At, we offer a complete range of decking support products including fixed and adjustable support pads, as well as structural joists, so you can be certain that the deck has a solid foundation. We always try to make it as simple as possible for customers by signposting them to the most suitable product – and our artificial intelligence-based product recommender tool can notify you if you forget to add an essential component.”

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