With the good weather, hopefully, coming around the corner we need to start turning our attention once more to the outside spaces in our homes. Come the good weather we are going to be spending a whole lot of time out int the garden or back yard. So, what do we need to do to ensure that the area is where it needs to be when we want to use it. We need to accept, gladly, that the winter maintenance routine is over.
- Cut Back the Greenery
- Wash the Patio & Paths
- Look at New Features
- Remove Any Old Ones
- Get Landscaping Sorted
- Questions and Answers about prepping the garden for the summer
- Q: Do you have all your tools in order?
- Q: Do you need a plan for your garden?
- Q: Is it the first time you’re gardening?
- Q: Do you buy, or do you make compost?
- Q: Is the weed barrier essential?
- Q: Is the mulch a must in your garden?
- Q: Do you have any aggressive plants in your garden?
- Q: Is pruning required in all gardens?
- Q: Are there any bird tables to take care of?
- Q: Do you have furniture to take care of?
- Q: Is it essential to collect and recycle rainwater?
Cut Back the Greenery
Even though the growing season is largely dormant during the cold winter months, it’s not to say that it’s completely dead. So, there will be a lot of cutting back. You will need to mow the lawn, trim the trees and the bushes and clear the paths and walls of moss and other growths.
Wash the Patio & Paths
We already mentioned the paths in the last section, however, we never specifically mentioned how to clean the paths or patios. A good, non-corrosive, cleaner is essential and it is important to realize that not all cleaners are suitable for every type of slab or patio. It may be essential to check with the manufacturer as to what cleaner is recommended.
Look at New Features
Making everything you have look good for the spring is one thing, but every now and then it seems to be time to get a new feature. The list of things that you can do with a garden is almost endless, new lawn, decking, outdoor urn fountains amongst many other things. You can find that many of these things are easy enough to install if you have the skills, however, if you don’t be sure to get a professional installer to do it well and safety.
Remove Any Old Ones
As well as looking at having new features put in you should consider what needs to be removed or replaced. Things like cracked pavers or broken fence slats are classic examples of this kind of thing. Sometimes these small replacements are not enough, and you need to decide if the whole thing needs to be completely replaced. When doing this it can be important to consider that the removal of the old feature will take a lot of time and effort, perhaps if it is established. You will also need to arrange for the removal of the waste of old products to be taken away.
Get Landscaping Sorted
This could be the opportunity to change the layout and range of your garden area. Garden layout ideas are easy to find online. If you have a slope that you always wanted to be flat then perhaps now is the time. You can even do it yourself, hire a small digger and take it away, and if nothing else you get to play on a huge toy! Other things include relaying your lawn or putting in a new deck or other feature that speaks to you. No matter what you do make sure it’s what you want.
Questions and Answers about prepping the garden for the summer
Q: Do you have all your tools in order?
A: You don’t just go and start gardening, you need to make sure that your shovels, hoes, and spades are in good condition. They mustn’t have any cracks nor dry handles and rusted metal parts. It would help if you also sanded down the handles, using some linseed oil for rubbing.
Q: Do you need a plan for your garden?
A: If you’re a passionate gardener, the risk of getting carried away at the gardening center is quite high. It’s essential to be meticulous, so make a plan for the basis. You can go in different ways, from flowers to herbs or vegetables. It’s also important to decide if you want perennials, which are great since they spare you the effort of planting every single year anew. Therefore, grab a pen and paper before catching your gardening tools.
Q: Is it the first time you’re gardening?
A: If this isn’t the first summer you’re preparing the garden, your gardening space may be in good shape already. It’s not the case for the new owners or first-time gardeners. There are many things to take care of, and you should start by checking the soil. If it’s light brown, it may need some help. Dark brown or black soil is an organically rich one. Some compost and/or aged mushroom soil could help light brown earth. You have to dig the fertilizer into the surrounding land so that you can loosen the ground and create space for the growing roots later on.
Q: Do you buy, or do you make compost?
A: Keep in mind that good compost will improve the quality of any garden soil. You don’t need to buy it, and it’s entirely free to make it at home. Start with purchasing a compost bin or create one from an old container or wood. Throw in the bin garden waste, along with kitchen waste. Vegetable peelings work great for compost. The rotting process will make adequate compost, which will help your plants thrive later on.
Q: Is the weed barrier essential?
A: Not everyone is dealing with a weed problem in the garden, but it’s better that you make a barrier against weeds anyway. You have to make it before planting your plants. Begin with pulling the unwanted plants out by the root as much as you can. Continue with a layer of cardboard, laying it down. It would help if you built your garden beds on top of that cardboard, which will keep the buried weeds from stealing the nutrients and sunlight from your plants.
Q: Is the mulch a must in your garden?
A: Putting mulch over the soil is also one way to keep weeds at a distance. Dead leaves, wood chips, hay, burlap bags, grass clippings, and biodegradable mats make good muck. Typically, you need to spread mulch over the soil so that it will keep it fresh while blocking the weeds from getting in. Mulch is also good because it doesn’t let the water evaporate. Organic matter from the lawn can also work as mulch, but you should leave it out in the sun for a day before spreading it. Additionally, make sure that it hasn’t been exposed to chemicals or pesticides while keeping it an inch away from the plant stem. Otherwise, it can affect the roots.
Q: Do you have any aggressive plants in your garden?
A: Some plants like to spread and take over the entire garden, and you must get in control. One way to do it is by planting it in a large pot, cutting the bottom out, and planting the entire plant with the container. It’s going to stop the plant from growing sideways, forcing the roots to become straight down.
Q: Is pruning required in all gardens?
A: If you have rose bushes or woody plants such as hydrangeas, some pruning before the spring flush will be needed. Don’t forget that you need to use good quality pruning tools that are sharp. It’s fundamental to have a clean-cut, which will reduce the risk of disease and keep insects away. The cuts have to be above dormant buds or near the primary trunks of your plants.
Q: Are there any bird tables to take care of?
A: some people like to attract wildlife in the garden, and a bird table is one essential accessory for that. Birds love to fly into a garden, especially if treats and bath are expecting.
It would help if you made sure that the bird table is clean so that it doesn’t harm the birds. After you clean it, you should also re-stock with nuts and seeds for the birds.
Q: Do you have furniture to take care of?
A: Once summer kicks in, you will spend plenty of time in the garden with your friends. You have some furniture in the garden. If you have stored it throughout the winter, it may be dusty. When you take it out of the storage, you need to check it and clean it.
For those of you using wood furniture, a new treatment for preserving the wood may also be necessary. It’s going to protect it against the weather and expand the lifespan too.
Q: Is it essential to collect and recycle rainwater?
A: Even if rain may be too much at times, you should always think about the ways you can use it for your garden. It’s worth collecting the rainwater since it’s an eco-friendly way to water the plants when the soil is dry. Rainwater is better than tap water for the plants. You never know how dry the summer is going to be, so you should start collecting the rainwater during spring.