The key to enjoying your backyard to the fullest each and every summer season?
Getting it ready before the season hits. Not only do you want to avoid the hard labor of gardening, cleaning, and setting up patio furniture in the heat, but wouldn’t you much rather spend the nice weather relaxing and enjoying your space?
To help you make the most of your backyard space this summer, here is how you can prepare your outdoor oasis in 10 simple steps!
1. Make a Plan
The first step in any effective backyard opening following the winter and spring is making a plan for success.
This will help you to align your evenings and weekends that will be dedicated to outdoor work, make a trip to the store for any essentials as you get started, ask family and/or friends for help if needed, and determine which step comes next.
Your plan should account for:
- Gardening and landscaping
- Opening the hot tub or swim spa
- Cleaning and building patio furniture
- grass maintenance and control
- Repairs or renovations
- Short and long-term budgets
You may find it most effective to select a date that you would like the backyard to be ready for. This goal date may help you better structure and plan your free time around backyard maintenance!
2. Power Wash… Everything
First things first, break out the hose or power washer and get cleaning! We suggest starting with the siding of your house, along with any windows and doors.
From there, move to structures such as a gazebo that could use a good wash down to remove dirt, debris, and even cobwebs.
From there, use your hose or power washer to give your deck and patio area a good rinse, with the water leading to the grass or driveway. This way, you will have a clean surface to work with when bringing out your summer gear and essentials in your backyard!
3. Treat Your Spa Water
Whether you used your spa throughout the winter months or tucked it away for nicer nights, this is a great opportunity to perform some maintenance.
We suggest draining the water in your spa, washing the interior, cleaning or replacing the filter, and then refilling with clean and fresh water. Add your water care products as needed, and enjoy!
You may also want to give your swim spa or hot tub installation a good inspection and cleaning as well. Even your spa cover can benefit from a little TLC!
4. Arrange Patio Furniture
Next up, patio furniture!
Whether your patio furniture is stored in the shed, garage, or basement, now is the time to bring it outside and give it a good cleaning.
Often some water from the hose and a rag or sponge should do the trick, but you may need a cleaning product if there is a build-up of dust, dirt, or, once again, cobwebs!
Have your patio chair cushions seen brighter days? Take some time to wash them down with your hose and some dish soap, or bite the bullet and invest in new cushions for the season.
5. Tend to the Garden and Lawn
You knew that this step was coming! While tending to your lawn and garden can be a lot of hard work, it sure is worth it!
- How you prepare and treat your lawn may depend on the health and overall state
- Generally, we suggest maintaining with regular mowing, watering using a sprinkler and weed prevention if needed
- If you wish to take things a step further, you may use fertilizer, aerate and add additional grass seed to fill bald spots
- When cutting your grass, we suggest aiming for first thing in the morning or the evening, but to avoid mid-day when it is exceptionally hot and sunny
- Similar to lawn care, how you treat your garden will depend on it’s health, state and the plants that are going to be either planted or growing after a winter hibernation
- Generally, we suggest taking some time to pull weeds, add soil and mulch as needed, and plant any new plants for the season as early as possible
- Water the plants in your garden daily and watch for the growth of weeds. You may want to use fertilizer as well!
How you care for your lawn and garden is totally dependent on how much time, money, and effort you wish to put into it for the summer season.
Some prefer low maintenance, while others find gardening to be a stress-relieving hobby. Keep in mind that these are general tips, you may want to speak with an expert at your local landscape supply store or garden center for more in-depth information.
6. Treat the Weeds
As mentioned above, treating the weeds should start as soon as the warm weather has arrived! The sooner you begin to control them, the more effective your efforts will be.
While some homeowners choose to have a professional treat the weeds using chemicals, others may want to take a more natural and DIY approach.
Here are some of our favorite ways to control weeds without the use of chemicals, if you so choose:
- Boiling water
- Dish soap
- Baking soda
Take your weed control to the next level by combining white vinegar, dish soap, and salt into a spray bottle.
Simply spray your weeds at high noon, and within a few days, they will likely be dead and gone!
Keep in mind that you should still remove them from the ground and keep a close eye on the area for regrowth.
7. Organize Your Shed and Supplies
The organization of your shed, garage, or basement where outdoor supplies are stored should never go overlooked!
Letting your storage space go unmaintained is a slippery slope, so we suggest taking some time to re-organize and clean up, especially once many of your summer supplies have been taken out.
8. Make a Trip to the Dump
Whether we like it or not, this is the perfect time to do some purging. As you clean up your backyard and prepare the space for summer, you’re bound to start a “dump trip” pile with odds and ends that will need to be taken away.
Whether it’s a broken pool float, backyard debris, or empty spa chemical containers, there’s no better time to get the trash taken away and keep your backyard free of clutter.
9. Plan a Shopping Trip
Your backyard is so close to being ready to enjoy the summer!
As you clean the area, organize outdoor furniture, and add decor, you’re bound to notice what is missing. Make the most of your time by making a list of all the items and essentials needed to finalize your backyard summer opening and plan a trip to the shops!
You should make a stop at your local spa supply store, home improvement store, garden center, dollar store, and even a local big box store for all odds and ends!
10. The Finishing Touches
Now is the time to add your finishing touches.
From outdoor lights and the audio system to citronella candles, potted plants, and aromatherapy essentials for the spa, the finishing touches will really help to bring your backyard space for ultimate summer enjoyment this season!