Warmer days, lighter evenings and some much needed sunshine mean spring is well underway, bringing with it the possibility of al fresco dining. But before you invite the neighbours round for a barbecue, there’s some tidying up to be done.
Here’s how to spruce up your garden for the summer
1. Prepare for planting
Removing dead leaves and other debris is the best way to begin your clear up. You can then weed your borders. If you’d rather not use weed killer, simply rake over the soil, grab hold of a weed and yank out as much of the root as possible. A small trowel or weeding tool can help to loosen any stubborn roots.
To banish weeds from the cracks between your paving stones, we recommend pouring boiling water over them or sprinkling them with salt. You should see results within a couple of days and you can prevent the weeds from reappearing by brushing the cracks every two week. This stops any remaining seeds from taking root.
Once you’ve weeded, it’s time to dig a layer of compost or manure into your borders before cutting back dead growth and pruning any roses or buddleias. If you don’t want the birds to feast on your fruit trees, you should cover the trees with netting and fill your bird feeders with tempting treats!
2. Polish up your patio
To prepare your patio for those lazy summer lunches, simply mix hot water with washing up liquid or acid free floor cleaner and scrub with a brush. Soapy water isn’t great for plants, so once you’ve loosened the dirt, don’t throw the soapy water onto your plants. Instead, we recommend hosing it into the nearest drain.
If you’d rather use a pressure washer, it’s worth checking the pressure before you begin, as you don’t want to damage your patio. However, there’s no need to panic if any holes or cracks do appear. Simply tap away any loose concrete and fill them with fresh mortar.
Once you're happy with your patio, give your barbecue a quick once over. If it's lost its sparkle you're in luck, as local business Dazzling Oven Clean are offering to clean away the grime for just £20.
3. Refresh your fences
Spring is great time to treat and paint weathered fences. Start by using a stiff bristled brush to get rid of dirt and cobwebs, then invest in a good quality timber stain and preservative. When it comes to colour, you could either choose a shade that matches your shed or opt for a little colourful contrast.
You’ll need to wait for a warm (not hot) dry day to paint your fences, but in the meantime, we recommend buying a quality soft brush and testing the stain on a small area of fencing to be sure that you’re happy with the colour. Once you’re ready to paint, start with the verticals before painting each panel from top to bottom.
4. Give your lawn some love
Lawns always look so much better once they’ve had that first proper cut, so make the most of any dry days to trim, strim and edge your grass. Aerating it with a fork is also a good idea, as this will encourage the grass roots to grow, improve drainage and help the grass our lawn some loveto absorb vital nutrients.
If you’re lawn is very patchy, try gently breaking up the surface soil with a rake, sowing some seed and watering it 2-3 days later. After about ten days, new grass should start to appear. You can then apply lawn feed.
If the winter has left your garden full of moss, you’ll need to give it a vigorous rake before treating it. Options include bacteria based treatments and chemical control products that will blacken the moss. .
To keep your lawn vibrant and free from pests, mow it at least once a week during the summer and water it every 7-10 days.
5. Freshen up your garden furniture
There’s nothing worse than grimy garden furniture, so before you get the barbecue going, make sure yours is in pristine condition. Plastic chairs are the easiest to clean, as they only need a wipe with warm soapy water and a sponge.
To clean up wooden furniture, start by removing any mould, dust and grime before rubbing it down with sandpaper. You can then stain, oil or paint it if you wish. Metal furniture will need to be washed and scrubbed with wire wool.
Bringing your garden up to scratch can be time consuming, so if you’re struggling to get everything done, why not contact Anthony who runs Sutton Coldfield based business Curb Appeal? Whether your fence needs painting or your hedge needs a trim, Anthony guarantees to get your garden barbecue ready!
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