Things For Your Backyard You’ll Wish You’d Bought Years Ago

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From fun games the whole family can play to products that’ll help you keep your cool, your backyard is about to get a major upgrade.

We hope you love the products we recommend! All of them were independently selected by our editors. Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page if you decide to shop from them. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

1.

A stylish Citronella candle to keep bugs at bay while you watch the sunset with your roomies (or your dog…or alone… whatever you’re into).


Amazon

Promising review: “Smells amazing, ordered because I figured if it didn’t smell the best at least it’s citronella, but pleasantly surprised. The box it comes in is nice and smells like the candle. Very happy with purchase.” —Sam

Get it from Amazon for $11.99+ (also available as a set of three)

2.

A stylish outdoor rug that’ll create a softer spot for your pet to lounge if your yard happens to be lacking in the ~luscious grass~ department.


Amazon

Promising review: “I love the weight of this rug and the way it lays flat! This rug is on my deck and I love that it dries quickly after a rain even if the temperature outside is not really high. This rug is beautiful! This is my first season with this rug and I will put it away for the cold wet Ohio winter. Looking forward to using this rug for many years to come!” —Joy H

Get it from Amazon for $71.99+ (available in two sizes and styles).

3.

A lawn mower in case you have so much grass that your yard is starting to look more like an overgrown forest than a suburban retreat.


Amazon, amazon.com

Promising review: “If this is how easy the electric cars will be then sign me up. No more going to the gas stations, no struggling getting the lawn mower out of the shed no more waking up the neighbors — I should get a discount. All my neighbors love it. Even the postman took time to take a look.” —Jazzin Sykes

Get it from Amazon for $267.88.

4.

A watering can that’ll help you channel your inner elephant and ~never forget~ to water your plants.


amazon.com

Promising review: “I needed something with a long narrow spout, and decided that it would be cute if it was in the shape of an animal. I came across this elephant, and just had to have him. He’s so cute, and he looks like he’s watering my lettuce! Love this! The water comes out in a nice stream too, not out of a large hole. This gives me a little more control when watering plants or filling the reservoir. It’s a little larger than I expected it to be, but is perfect because I was afraid it was going to be too small.” — KM

Get it from Amazon for $8.12.

5.

A canopy to provide shade for you and your friends while you ~throw shade~ about the other people in your lives.


Wayfair

Promising review: “It fits perfectly on our deck. We can walk out our door and right into it. The netting keeps the bugs away so we can enjoy our evenings outside.” —Cindy from Aurora

Get it from Wayfair for $145.99.

6.

A mini pool even adults can enjoy, so you can pretend you’re on vacation in the Hamptons instead of your apartment’s tiny patio.


amazon.com, amazon.com

Promising review: “2020… need I say more? Stuck at home, vacation cancelled, now also furloughed… oh, and my central AC just completely died as well. I needed something to make being home for months on end more bearable, so I decided to get myself a pool for some sunbathing/ relaxing. I love this thing!! I got an electric pump to blow it up, so that’s easy. Got a tarp to cover it with when I’m not using it. Got a cheap net to scoop out leaves and bugs that find their way inside. It’s awesome! Highly recommend. I’ve already sent the link to inquiring friends who have the same idea as me. Do it!!” —MDG

Get it from Amazon for $139.99.


Amazon

Promising review: “Just opened them and love them!! I was expecting cheap material since they’re much less expensive than any other zero gravity chair I’ve seen. But they look and feel like very nice quality!! Very comfortable reclined position and the headrest is easy to adjust. Also, the locking mechanism is very easy to use. Not to mention they fold down flat and are light to carry!! We’ll be packing these in our car for beach vacations. I will order more of these as gifts for friends and family. Oh and I really liked that they were 100% ready when they arrived in the mail. Not a single bit of assembling required.” —Miranda

Get them from Amazon for $99.99.

8.

Or a four-piece set of rattan furniture so everyone will have a spot of their own where they can unwind.


Amazon

Note: reviewers say the set arrives in two separate shipments and the cushions really are waterproof.

Promising review: “This is a great patio set. It was super easy to to assemble by myself and fairly light so it is easy to move around. It is comfortable enough for patio furniture. The set looks pretty modern and blends nicely with my deck. Initially, I used this set for my front porch which I was waiting for the porch set to arrive, and I received a number of compliments on this set. Overall, I’m very satisfied with the quality of the set for the price.” —Peter Vu

Get it from Amazon for $354.99+ (available in tan or blue).

9.

Playful animals you can hang from plants or trees in your yard to add some ~wild style~ to your decor.

10.

A portable grill you’ll be able to use to grill up a delicious feast even if you don’t have an abundance of outdoor space.


Amazon

Promising review: “This grill is great! It has three burners so the things that you are grilling do not cook unevenly. I purchased a 20lb to 1lb propane adapter and hooked up my 20lb propane to it. It is easy to assemble. I usually prefer a charcoal grill over propane, but this grill came close to giving me the charcoal grill taste, it did not disappoint me. Awesome product!” —Michael S

Get it from Amazon for $249.99 (available in black, green, or red).


amazon.com, Amazon

Promising review: “I purchased these to cover the side of my house. Installation was easy and I left them outside for two days to charge. The light coverage was about what I expected from them and do the job well. The motion sensitivity covers all the side and lights turn on. It has rained about three times and still work great and hoping they last for a long time.” —J. Argueta

Get a set of four from Amazon for $39.99.

12.

An embossed metal pot that’ll look like chic yard decor but’ll discreetly be where you store your garden hose.


Amazon

Promising review: “It is a wonderful product! It is the second one we have purchased! One for the backyard and the front of the house! It’s pretty, sturdy, and the hose fits well in the bowl! It should last for years!” —patricia mercilliott

Get it from Amazon for $92.96.

13.

Or a hose holder that’s a little more low maintenance and can still get the job done.


Amazon

Promising review: “Easy to put together, seems very sturdy, and looks great. I love that I didn’t have to attach this to the house or use any tools and it’s still strong enough to hold up the hose.” —Angela H.

Get it from Amazon for $45.99.

14.

And a heavy duty hose you’ll find to be super strong but very light, so you won’t have fret about your plants or grass suffering.


amazon.com

Promising review: “I’ve seen hoses like this on TV for years. I was a skeptic, but no more! It was like working with rope, but better. The ends have nice brass fitting, including a brass valve on one end. The hose is 18 feet long when the water is off. Under pressure it increases to about 50 feet. That’s pretty amazing. Turn off the water and it quickly shrinks back to 18 feet. The best part is how little space this takes up compared to a standard 50-foot hose.” —DJC

Get it from Amazon for $49.99+ (available in 50, 75, or 100 feet and seven colors).

15.

A playhouse for your kids (or friends’ kids) that looks like an actual lil’ log cabin and’ll make your backyard the go-to destination of the summer.


Target

Promising review: “Purchased for my granddaughter. It was surprisingly easy to build. I was able to do everything aside from the roof by myself. She’s happily playing away.” —ABW

Get it from Target for $299.99.

16.

Flamingo lawn ornaments you’ll love so much you’ll want to name them and make them part of the family.


amazon.com

Promising review: “I needed to replace my faded flamingos, and wanted brighter more fuchsia colored ones. These are bright and sturdy, would definitely purchase again.” —Renee Spasiano

Get a set of two from Amazon for $13.99.

17.

Or a vintage-style bike planter complete with three baskets you can fill with your favorite flowers and enjoy even if you haven’t ridden a bicycle in over a decade.


amazon.com

Promising review: “I bought this for my mother, whose been an avid gardener for over 30 years. It was specifically a Mother’s Day gift, but really would be such a wonderful and thoughtful gift for anyone who likes to plant, garden, accessorize with vintage charm. Its size is about to my knee (I’m 5-foot-6) and VERY sturdy. My mother has it outside on our porch for her herbs. It doesn’t take up much space, but can easily be either indoor or outdoor. It’s currently part of her outdoor patio furniture grouping and looks charming. I highly recommend this to anyone looking to bring a little smile to any planter, gardener in your life.” —Jennifer J.

Get it from Amazon for $54.99 (available in black or bronze).

18.

Globe string lights that’ll transform your backyard into the hipster haven you’ve always imagined it could be.


amazon.com

Promising review: “Absolutely love the dim feature! These bulbs are more round than oval like others, but I love them. When they are off, there’s a cool yellow in them that offers a lovely aesthetic when not in use. Our pergola is wired for lights so we mounted them on and almost always dim them because the white pergola reflects the light. These lights have made our patio my new favorite spot in the house. My husband and I find the evenings so relaxing, we’ve literally grown closer together from spending time out under the lights in our new favorite place.” —fishurmo

Get them from Amazon for $16.99+ (available in 27, 48, and 97 feet).

19.

An oversized blanket you can spread out on your lawn to catch some rays, read a book, or have a spontaneous picnic with your S.O.


Forever 21

Promising review: “I’ve been eyeing this blanket for a while and I finally decided to go ahead and purchase it. My only complaint is that I should have bought It a long time ago! It’s super cute and looks even better in person. It’s also so soft that you won’t wanna let it go. If you’ve been thinking about purchasing this, this is your sign to do so.” —M.M.

Get it from Forever 21 for $24.99.

20.

Classic gardening tools built into a handy seat you can settle in on to save your knees while also transforming that empty patch of dirty in your yard into a flowering feast for the eyes.


Target

This set comes with a steel 12.125-inch broad face trowel, a 12-inch narrow face trowel, an 11-inch garden fork, an 11-inch cultivator/rake, a 12.5-inch weeder, and a seat to keep ’em all in place *and* keep you comfortable.

Promising review: “I purchased this item for my aunt who loves to work in her yard. She absolutely loved it and could not wait to use it once the weather warms up, she was happy about the little seat as she says all the time that her ‘bones are old!’ I had wished the color to be different but she likes the olive green so it was a winner! :)” —pudding222

Get a six-piece set from Target for $68.95.

21.

A portable golf game you can use to practice your chipping skills in the comfort of your own yard (or, you know, when you aren’t able to get a tee time).


Chip-Down

I recently gifted this to one of my golf-loving friends and it’s been a big hit! It’s perfect for anyone looking to add an extra activity to their “what-can-I-do-while-quarantining” list. The game is simple — you want to toss (or chip, if you have golf clubs at home) the birdie into the three ring target. The set comes with six specially weighted birdies, two anti-slipping chipping mats, the three-ring target, and a travel bag for storage.

Get it from Chip-Down for $49.99.

22.

A hanging hammock chair for the ultimate chill spot where you can listen to your podcasts or take a nap in peace.


Wayfair

Note: you will need separate hanging hardware to ensure your swing is safe and secure.

Promising review: “We absolutely love this chair hammock! We had to order hanging hardware separately, but it is hanging in my son’s bedroom and he is in it constantly. Reading, napping, playing games. Fantastic purchase!” —Kurt from Pocatello

Get it from Wayfair for $41.95 (available in five styles).

23.

Or a regular hammock, in case you have ~someone special~ in your life you’d like to snuggle up with while you gaze into the night sky.


amazon.com

Promising review: “Love the hammock. Very easy to put up, and I love the mesh. I’m planning on using it all summer. It’s a little tight for my boyfriend and me. You need to be comfortable with the person you’re sharing with LOL. But definitely worth the price.” —Shelsea Rivera

Get it from Amazon for $38.99.

24.

A portable projector you can set up in your yard for the ultimate movie night your kids will never forget — good luck convincing them to watch anything other than Frozen.


cinemood_usa / thehealthymouse / Via instagram.com

My husband and I recently tested this out on a wall in our apartment and it was pretty freakin’ cool! I love Jessica McDonald’s (@thehealthymouse on Instagram) setup for watching Disney movies with her tyke! I can totally see laying out cozy blankets, pillows, and a tent for an outdoor movie night the entire fam will enjoy. This pocket-sized gadget has the capability of streaming Disney+, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and YouTube.

Promising review: “I was so excited when I came across Cinemood, because we had been searching for an alternative for my child’s room. The sleep timer is perfect because she likes to listen to lullabies before bed, and we often read the stories as well. Shadow puppets just blew her mind away, super cool! I enjoy finding new devices I can try, and this one surely did not disappoint. I originally bought it for the kids, but I’ve actually used it for movie nights, our friends are always impressed. I look forward to using it outdoors this spring!” —Elixir Premium Lab

Get it from Amazon for $349.95.

25.

A country store-themed bird house that’ll enamor anyone who lays their eyes on it and’ll keep you entertained – you’ll be able to watch as an array of feathered friends visit.


Amazon

Promising review: “It is obvious a lot of thought went into the design of this house. Between the ventilation, raised floor, easy access for cleaning, extra interior grip for fledgings, and the metal guard for the access hole … you couldn’t find better quality for the price. To anyone that purchases this house, I would recommend pre-drilling the holes for the metal guard, cedar wood is soft and I caused a small split in the wood by not pre-drilling. Otherwise, enjoy!” —Jackie

Get it from Amazon for $19.99.

26.

A melamine pitcher with a playful design, perfect for filling with freshly squeezed lemonade or margaritas (you do, YOU!) for backyard hangs.


Anthropologie

Promising review: “Such a cute little pitcher with a beautiful print! It’s made of bamboo so it’s very soft, and it’s dishwasher-safe!” —alexisarden

Get it from Anthropologie for $15.

27.

And a melamine dining set you can use to enjoy a meal as the sun sets in your backyard. Doesn’t that sound delightful?


Amazon

Promising review: “I purchased these dishes for ‘spring’ and entertaining outside all summer. I couldn’t be more delighted. They are adorable, sturdy, and people rave about them. I can uses so many different placemats with them, and they are cheery and fun. I love them!!!” —candace haine

Get service for four from Amazon for $39.99.

28.

A supersized version of Connect Four that’ll provide your squad with hours upon hours of simple fun in the sun. The only downfall is you might never want to play the regular version again!


Amazon, amazon.com

Promising review: “Best purchase! We bought it for the kids but my husband and I stayed up until 1 a.m. playing!! It was a hit at our party! Great quality. Yes, you can hit the bar and release the discs, but it hasn’t happened to us and wouldn’t be a big deal if it did! Totally worth it! So glad we got it!!” —Rechel B

Get it from Amazon for $79.99.

29.

A waterproof portable Bluetooth speaker, so you’ll never have to fumble with headphone wires at the beach or pool again.


amazon.com

I’ve had one of these portable lil’ gadgets for two years now (I own the flip 4) and it hasn’t failed me yet! The music is clear and crisp even when I’m using it outside at the windy beach. Definitely a fan — it does exactly what it should!

Promising review: “This little speaker packs a real punch for its size. The sound quality on this speaker is very crisp and clear and the base is quite deep. I’ve owned and tested many other speakers in its class and they can’t compare. The durability on this thing is insane! I’ve thrown it down a 50-foot staircase onto asphalt and no problem occurred. I’ve dunked it in water on multiple occasions and nothing happened. The battery life of this thing is also kind of amazing! But I’ve got to tell you that this speaker has its limits due to its size. It gets the best quality use in small/medium sized rooms or small outdoor living spaces. Something this size has its limits. Besides that I highly recommend this speaker if you’re trying to make your final decision.” —Beckett K.

Get it from Amazon for $79.95 (available in nine styles).

30.

A giant unicorn pool float that’ll look absolutely spectacular in the Instagram pics you’ll definitely be taking at home in your pool this summer. Hope your mom’s photo skills have improved since last year!


amazon.com

Promising review: “This floaty is huge! It’s big enough for an adult to lie on and not even touch the water. It doesn’t have a hole in the middle so it’s super comfortable. My friends 5-year-old daughter loved it too! I’ve had it for over a month now, used several times with no issues at all.” —Kelsey

Get it from Amazon for $32.99.

31.

A reversible rug with checkers on one side and tic-tac-toe on the other, a must-have for any competitive family.


Amazon, amazon.com

Promising review: “This is a standard item in our beach bag. Gives people a chance to interact, have fun, and take a break from the water. I like that it has three different games. Weight of items is good for outdoor use. They don’t blow away in windy weather.” —Mickey

Get it from Amazon for $14.99.

32.

A stainless-steel fire pit that’ll help transform your not-so-manicured yard into one anyone would feel relaxed hanging out in.


amazon.com, amazon.com

My family has this fire pit and has been loving it all summer long! My sisters have a blast making s’mores and hanging out around it while watching the sunset — what more could you ask for? My dad also built out an entire seating area around it! It looks fantastic.

Promising review: “We just received our Tiki fire pit and I was immediately impressed with the quality of the craftsmanship. We have been looking for a fire pit for our patio and this one is perfect! The black exterior and copper colored lining is gorgeous and I love that it can use pellets or wood logs. It is a nice size and there was nearly no assembly. The low smoke design and ash pan for easy cleanup was an unexpected bonus. This definitely exceeded our expectations.” —Shari Bitterman

Get it from Amazon for $350.

33.

A set of boho throw pillows you can toss onto your outdoor furniture to give it a fresh, new look.


Amazon

Get them from Amazon for $32.99.

34.

A splash pad to help keep your kiddos cool and content while playing in the hot summer sun.


amazon.com

This toy is ideally for kids ages 2–12. It features animals and letters around the mat so little ones can learn while they cool off — win-win!

Promising review: “If you are thinking about buying this, do it! My 2.5-year-old daughter couldn’t wait to open it up. She loves splash pads and I was excited about getting her one for home. Even the baby could play with it! It created a little pool of water in the middle that they could splash in and the jets of water actually went a lot higher than I expected. Plenty of room for both of them and could probably have a few more toddlers play with it as well. Loved that I did not have to blow anything up. Just hooked the hose up and there it goes. Did have to squeeze it a bit to get the water out but minor inconvenience for how much fun they had with it!” —Kristen

Get it from Amazon for $24.99.

35.

A picnic table you can easily attach onto your fence or a tree to give your bushy-tailed buddies a comfortable place to dine.


DelgadoHCTreasures / Etsy, Michelle Braga

I recently gifted this to my brother-in-law who had already managed to gain the trust of his local squirrels (by leaving peanuts out for them in a bowl in front of his house). It’s been DELIGHTFUL to receive photos from him of the bushy-tailed creatures snackin’ away. This really is the gift that keeps on giving.

Get it from DelgadoHCTreasures on Etsy for $27.

36.

A set of LED pathway lights to ensure you won’t trip over your own feet while letting your dog in and out of the yard.


Target

Promising review: “These lights are amazing! They light up from dusk till dawn, and the assembly and installation was so easy, a child could do it. They are completely made of plastic; would be nice if there was a fully metal option. I love the modern design.” —SarahSTL

Get a set of six from Target for $35.

37.

An oversized block-stacking game that’ll amp up your family’s competitive spirits while also encouraging you to get outside for a while.


Amazon

Promising review: “Purchased these for ‘game nights’ on the terrace during the summer and they were much more popular than I expected. These are solid and seem like they will last quite a while. Solid set and bag makes storing a breeze!” —Josh

Get it from Amazon for $69.99.

38.

A machine to help you whip up margaritas, piña coladas, and daiquiris so you can mentally transport yourself to a tropical island.


amazon.com

Promising review: “Bought this for my wife for her birthday. I was planning on going with something cheaper, but after I read all the good reviews on this machine I decided to get this one. This margarita maker is worth every penny! It’s so simple to use and the fact that you can manually mix it more or add more shaved ice to make it exactly the way you want it is fantastic. We found that after a normal cycle, it leaves some small chunks of ice. Blend for three more seconds, and boom, it’s perfect.” —A.S.

Get it from Amazon for $250.

39.

And an outdoor pizza oven that’ll make every party a pizza party — and everyone knows there’s nothing better than a pizza party.


Amazon, amazon.com

My parents moved from New York to North Carolina and the only thing they regret leaving behind (other than me… I hope) is the amazing pizza. The solution? They bought their own pizza oven! Now they whip up fresh pies like it’s nothing whenever they’re getting a craving for the ~good stuff~.

Promising review: “If you want to make a homemade pizza but do not have the space or skills to build a real brick oven pizza, you need to get this! The temperature gets well past the 700 degrees and stays hot long enough to cook about five pizzas before having to add more wood to the flame. I would recommend rolling out a few pies while you heat up the wood. Regardless, you will not be disappointed.” —Thaison Ta

Get it from Amazon for $115.

Me, when anyone asks me to leave my perfect future backyard:


NBC

Some reviews have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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