Welcome to this week's installment of “All decked out," a series of of posts where I tackle a part of the home where the great outdoors and the green indoors meet: your patio, porch, lanai, deck, or whatever you might call it.


We've covered a whole lot of terrace-themed territory over the past couple of months — from bug traps to hammocks to watering cans to lanterns and everything in between — and as the dog days of summer soon come to pass you'll probably find yourself looking for some supplementary warmth while taking advantage of the outdoor extensions of your home.


Modern outdoor fireplaces fit for patios and deck have become somewhat of the "it" patio accessory over the past few years, injecting a cozy ambience and primordial flare that only a good old fashion fire can provide. The two fuel options, wood and natural gas/propane, both have their environmental setbacks: wood, an inexpensive and renewable resource, releases particulate matter, carbon monoxide, and other substances when set ablaze. Propane and natural gas on the other hand, are generally considered "cleaner," safer, and lower-maintenance options that emit significantly less harmful air pollutants than wood but are, of course, norenewable resources.  


So what to do? It's not exactly a lose-lose situation since there are eco-friendlier fuel options for both wood and gas (ethanol) fireplaces out there. I've listed 'em below along with a few nifty outdoor fireplace options.  


Enviro-Log Firelogs @ Enviro-Log ($21.99, 5 lb/4 pk; $29.99, 5 lb/6 pk)















Square Patio Firepit @ Unique Garden Decor ($1,320 - $2,100)















Anywhere Fireplace - Gramercy Indoor/Outdoor Floor Fireplace @ Amazon.com ($169.99)














Purefuels Ethanol Biofuel @ Pureflame ($59.99 1 qt/6 pk)















Cincinnati Ethanol Fireplace @ Frontgate ($699)















Cast Iron Fire Bowl @ Design Within Reach ($375)















OZOFire Bio-Ethanol Liquid Fuel @ Amazon.com($45, 1 qt/6 pk)















Firepit @ Crate & Barrel ($199)














Java-Log Firelogs @ EnergyShift ($29, 5 lb/6 pk)
















Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

All decked out: Outdoor fireplaces
Burn baby, burn ... melding unmatchable ambiance with primal appeal, outdoor fireplaces are all the rage but make sure you choose the cleanest combustible possi