Eco-Friendly Outdoor Furniture for a Greener Backyard
Do your part for the planet while enjoying the great outdoors.
In years past, outdoor furniture has been surprisingly challenging to find in eco-friendly options. Because it faces the elements day in, day out, vintage pieces are often hard to come by—and most new patio furniture is built from plastic and other not-so-environmentally conscious options.
But now, eco-friendly patio furniture is available at even the biggest retailers—whether you want outdoor furniture crafted of recycled plastic that's been recovered from the oceans, built-to-last wood furniture from sustainable sources, or even cushions crafted of recycled polyester.
Before you shop, consider these tips to pick the perfect patio furniture for you—and the planet.
How to Choose Environmentally Friendly Outdoor Furniture
Research the manufacturing process
Take a look at how the furniture is produced, and how the materials were sourced.
Wood furniture should be certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), which ensures that the wood was forested from a sustainable source.
With recycled plastic furniture, see how much of the material is recycled, and how much is new plastic.
Some manufacturers also look for ways to reduce the carbon footprint of their production, such as paying for carbon offsets or reducing waste, which makes it even more environmentally conscious.
Related:The 20 Best Places to Buy Patio Furniture of 2023
Look for guarantees and warranties
If your patio furniture breaks after a few years of use, it doesn't matter how eco-friendly its creation was—because it'll now end up in the landfill.
Consider investing a little more into patio furniture that will stand up to the elements—many environmentally friendly manufacturers provide long, 20-year warranties on their products. Even better? Some offer to completely recycle your set into a new one when the time is right.
If your furniture is built to last, choose simple, classic designs that'll look just as great a decade from now. You might also opt for modular furniture that can be reconfigured into different seating arrangements. That way you can change up the look without changing up your furniture—and reconfigure it to fit a different patio space if you move.
Follow the care instructions carefully
The best way to ensure that patio furniture that's built to last actually lasts? Follow the manufacturer's care advice—including investing in covers—to make sure your investment pays off.
Related:How to Clean Canvas Patio Furniture and Pillows so They Look Brand New
10 Eco-Friendly Outdoor Furniture Options
If you're seeking environmentally friendly outdoor furniture, you'll find more options available every year—including green lounge furniture, dining tables and chairs, and even outdoor storage. Here are some of our favorites to consider adding to your patio.
Room and Board uses an array of recycled and repurposed materials in its outdoor furniture, including upcycled air bags, recycled HDPE and PET plastic, and recycled stainless steel, The Rayo sofas use HDPE plastic and come in an array of colors and fabrications—including outdoor-friendly velvet.
DuroGreen Aria Modern Recycled Chair
These sleek Adirondack-style chairs are made of 95 percent recycled HDPE (think milk jugs), and come in a rainbow of colors. The materials used by DuroGreen are GreenCircle Certified.
Neighbor Haven Sun Lounger
Neighbor uses FSC-certified teak and recycled Sunbrella fabrics in its outdoor furniture—including this sleek lounger.
Polywood Chinoiserie Glider
More than 1,000 plastic bottles that were on their way to the ocean are built into each of these gliders produced by Polywood—and its products come with a 20-year guarantee.
You can also get sofas, tables, chairs, and even an outdoor storage console table made from the brand's proprietary recycled plastic "wood."
Loll Designs Rapson Bar Cart
Loll Designs specializes in sleek, modern outdoor furniture like this cool bar cart—all made with recycled HDPE and Sunbrella fabrics. You'll find everything from funky coffee tables to full lounge sets, all sourced in the U.S. and manufactured in Minnesota.
Langdon Sectional Sofa
Oceanbound plastic is recycled into every piece of wicker furniture created by Yardbird, which uses recycled plastics in the production of its furnishings. It also offsets the carbon footprint for the production and shipping of its products.
Even better, when your furniture is ready to be retired, Yardbird will take it back and recycle it.
Related:5 Factors to Consider Before Buying Patio Furniture, According to the Pros
Highwood Adirondack Chair
Highwood makes heavy-duty plastic furniture, using 100 percent recycled materials and stainless steel, that comes with a 12-year guarantee.
Outer Teak Outdoor Loveseat
Outer creates built-to-last, environmentally friendly patio furnishings. Its teak sets are FSC certified, and Outer plants three new teak trees for every tree it uses to build its furniture.
The sofa cushions have a unique built-in cover, to help protect them from the elements when they're not in use—and the covers wrap around the cushions to make it easy to carry them away for storage when the season is over.
You can also get wicker furniture and outdoor rugs manufactured from recycled plastics.
Portside Outdoor Bistro Set
Dining furniture in FSC certified teak and eucalyptus wood can stand up to the elements—and it folds up so it's easy to move to your next picnic location.
(You can also get conversation sets, lounge chairs, and larger dining tables in the same style set.)
Paso Teak Adirondack Chair
Crate & Barrel uses FSC certified teak for a large part of its outdoor furniture collection, including this sleek modern take on the traditional Adirondack chair.
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