Five Top Stores for the Great Outdoors
Gourmet picnic baskets, designer patio furniture, and jewel-toned perennials—live life al fresco with supplies from these local stores.
For the Urban Gardener
259 Allandale Rd., Brookline, 617-524-1531, allandalefarm.com.
Outdoor space is a hot commodity in the city. Make the most of every square inch with lush hanging plants and flowers from the garden center at Allandale Farm, in Brookline. Just one part of the 130-acre farmstead, the nursery offers vibrant blooms such as African daisy, bearded iris, and hot-pink speedwell, not to mention all the organic soils, fertilizers, and pesticides you’ll need to keep your flora thriving.
Must-Buy: Geraniums in a 4.5-inch pot, $5.
For the Beach Bum
359 Newbury St., Boston, 617-502-1170, muji.com.
If you can tear yourself away from Muji’s tantalizing aromatherapy section long enough to look around, you might just notice that the Japanese retailer—which opened its doors on Newbury Street earlier this year—conveniently carries everything you need for a day at the beach, too: soft towels for dips in the ocean, airtight containers for munchies and drinks, and foldable totes to stash your supplies.
Must-Buy: Cotton blanket, $99.
For the Patio Percher
450 Harrison Ave., Boston, 617-955-9377, casaoutdoorboston.com.
There’s no reason your patio can’t feel as cozy as your living room. At Casa Outdoor’s South End showroom, you’ll find an extensive selection of modern dining tables, nap-worthy loungers and daybeds, weatherproof sofas, and other sleek designer furnishings guaranteed to infuse your space with some much-needed hygge.
Must-Buy: Kettal “Landscape” aluminum-and-teak rocking chair, $3,549.
For the Tanglewood Picnicker
102 Waltham St., Boston, 617-423-7847, stirboston.com/picnic-basket.
What’s an outdoor concert without snacks? Snag yours from Stir, chef Barbara Lynch’s South End demonstration kitchen, which fills birch baskets with freshly prepared salads, desserts, and other gourmet goodies featuring ingredients from Sudbury-based Siena Farms. Available for pickup on select dates in July and August, the grab-and-go packages (offered by reservation on a first-come, first-served basis) even include utensils for easy noshing.
Must-Buy: “The Perfect Provençal Picnic” basket with haricots verts salad, leg of lamb, lavender lemonade, and other items, $150.
For the Tailgater
Charles Street Supply Co.
54–56 Charles St., Boston, 617-367-9046, charlesstsupply.com.
Step up your pre-game with help from family-owned Charles Street Supply Co., which stocks Oxo bottle and can openers, burger-friendly spatulas, barbecue tongs, organic tick repellent, and other summer tailgate necessities on its jam-packed shelves. Don’t be afraid to chat up the Beacon Hill hardware store’s friendly employees if you need help choosing from the selection of portable grills, located in the basement.
Must-Buy: Weber “Smokey Joe Premium” portable charcoal grill, starting at $45.