March 28, 2019

Home Style || Preparing The Garden For Summer

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As Spring has sprung, the days are already starting to warm up and it's the perfect time to get outside sorting out our gardens. If we put in the leg work now, we can kick back in summer and enjoy the flowers, buzzing bees and late night barbecues with friends.

In the UK alone, we waste a whopping £672 million every year on average in our outside spaces, so the more we can learn about keeping our gardens in check, knowing what to grow and what will stand the test of time, the better.

I thought I'd share a few tips on where to start, to make sure we are making the best of our gardens, all ready to be enjoyed this summer.

As with all good home projects, starting off with a good declutter and clean is key to seeing what needs doing, buying and refreshing. This can often be the most time consuming and tedious part of the garden prep, but it is the most rewarding in terms of seeing results from your efforts.

Get weeding, clearing any old leaves left behind from Autumn/Winter and make sure any long standing plants are trimmed back, with fresh soil and no pesky bugs or weeds impacting their space.

Put any big plans or purchases on the back burner for now until you have a clear clean space to work with. Designate a composting area as well as some kind of water collector to harvest the rain water to use in summer. 

If you have decking boards, start by sweeping away any debris, dirt and rotten leaves. If you have a pressure washer, give the boards a wash down to prevent them getting slippery when wet, making them look cleaner and brighter. Do this for any hard surfaces such as paths, paving and concrete. Clearing these areas will instantly give your garden a lift, making it look fresher for summer and safer for walking on.

With fencing, you may want to spray or paint with a new coat of paint or weather seal, to keep it looking good and working well. With one quick pick of paint, fence panels can look as good as new.

If you have any sheds or outside storage areas, now is the perfect time to give them a good clear out. Make sure to keep only items you will use and to dispose of any broken furniture or kids toys stashed away. Although these areas are hidden away, it makes sense to have the clutter free for our own sake so we can find what we need when we need it. This could be a huge job depending on your storage space, but you'll be so pleased with the end results.

Now is the perfect time to invest in some new garden furniture too, we are already getting some gorgeous weather so we can enjoy it as much as we can through these warmer months if we get them sorted now.

Even the smallest gardens need some sort of relaxation space, from a simple bench to an elaborate swing chair, there are so many options now for all kinds of spaces and budgets. Try and think of what you'll want to be doing there, is it sitting reading a book? Sunbathing? Entertaining friends? Make sure to get adequate seating for your needs and invest in furniture that will stand the test of time.

Mirrors have a big impact both in and out the home. Investing in some garden mirrors can not only increase the illusion of space, but also reflect light back into the garden and increase the impact of colour from flowers and plants.

You may want to think about adding a BBQ to your garden too, and whether it's charcoal, electric or gas BBQs that you're after,  you can create the ultimate cooking spaces outdoors with very little effort. Even though the weather here in the UK is always unpredictable, we still get a good chunk of the year to enjoy the outdoors, so it's worth the investment.

When it comes to flowers and plants, you don't have to be particularly green fingered to create a truly beautiful garden. Simple hanging baskets make a real feature in the garden and if you're not sure where to start, you can even buy ready filled baskets, which are pretty cheap and can just be hung and watered straight away for a splash of colour. Try and choose plants that will come back through the seasons and need little maintenance if you're not too confident in the garden just yet. 

When buying plants, seeds and bulbs, be sure to read the packaging to make sure you are planting them at the right time and make note of any recommendations of care for the plants through the seasons. 

With this simple list, we can soon create the gardens we want and if we start now, by summer they'll be fully in bloom, all ready for us to sit back with a cold drink and enjoy!

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