Once you have installed a garden fire pit, the next step is to give it a more comfortable environment. Unless your fire pit is a table fire pit, you may not have thought abuot seating. People can stand around the fire pit area but if you want the area to be used frequently, some type of seating will probably be needed.
Wood, Stone, Metal or Plastic
A garden fire pit has four typical options for the seating. Wood and stone have been garden favorites for centuries, and wrought iron has now become popular. Conventional folding lawn chairs have been in use for nearly half a century and within the last 10 years plastic lawn and deck chairs and benches have become popular forms of seating.
Plastic may be an option for a garden fire pit, but they may not be practical to use. These chairs tend to be rigid, and require relatively level ground. Numerous bumps and dips in the ground can cause the chairs to tip easily, or even result in the chair back buckling or the legs breaking. If your fire pit is on a deck or concrete slab, plastic is probably the most affordable type of seating, but it is not as well suited to bare ground that is not level. Plastic furniture makes an excellent backup when extra chairs are needed, or the seating needs to be portable.
Not only are metal benches an expected feature of the home garden, they make excellent fire pit furniture. Metal seating requires very little maintenance, aside from painting every year or two, and it can stand up to all types of weather. You may want to add some removable cushions to make the seats more comfortable but even that luxury is not required for wrought iron.
Stone benches are well suited for a backyard fire pit. Stone requires almost no maintenance, aside from an occasional cleaning, and it is not susceptible to weather variations or extremes. Perhaps the biggest drawback to stone seating is that it is quite heavy and difficult to move and keep level without possible major adjustments to ground levels. For that reason, stone benches are generally used as primary seating, and other types of seating are used as extra and more mobile seating.
Wood seating can include anything from wicker chairs to log benches. Sections of tree trunk, cut smoothly and standing on end, make great movable chairs around an in-ground fire pit. When they are no longer needed, these impromptu chairs can be laid on their side and simply rolled away to a storage area. Log benches can be made out of a solid log cut length-wise and then laid on notched log brackets, much like the way a bench was made in pioneer times. Wood requires a bit more upkeep than other types of seating, but it also tends to offer more variety and mobility than any other choice except plastic.