If it feels like winter’s never going to end, then it might be time to start thinking and dreaming about the summer that’s right around the corner.

Cold, chilly nights will soon be replaced by long, warm evenings. But how ready is your garden for hosting BBQs and keeping guests entertained? It’s time to talk summer transformation.

bbq food cooking

Hard area

If you’ve got a patio or decking you’re going to need to start by weeding and cleaning your wood or stones. A few months left exposed to the elements will have taken their toll and led to some discolouration so consider turning the jet hose on it to blast through dirt and grime and lift off those stuck on leaves.

Tackle The Lawn

If the seasons haven’t been kind to your grass, then there are several options you can consider. Start by sowing grass seed to adequately fill in any gaps. Make sure that your lawn is properly draining by going over it with an aerator and backfilling with seed. Cut back shorter in the summer to allow more water to penetrate below the surface and keep your lawn in tip top condition.

If it all looks like too much, then you could go down the artificial route. With plenty of shades and tones to choose from, you’ll be able to pick a colour that you love and all with practically no upkeep, bar the need to sweep away debris and hose away dirt. You may be able to install the grass yourself if you area is small enough, otherwise call in the professionals to do it for you.

On the other hand, you may decide that a country meadow look is going to be this spring and summer style. While the plan might be to let your grass grow a little longer, you can still control what’s growing by weeding and introducing some beautiful wild plants.

Do your bit for the ecosystem by introducing plants that attract honey and bumble bees, butterflies and insects to turn your outside space into something of a haven for nature. Complete the look with plenty of hanging food for birds to find in any surrounding trees you have.

If you have a pond in your garden, now is the time to give it a thorough clear out. If you can, drain it and give the casing a good scrub with specially formulated cleaner that won’t upset any fish you have in there. Check that any water pumps are still functioning properly and refill, ready to reintroduce your wildlife and pond plants.

Update Your Furniture

Metal garden furniture can also show the effects of a cold winter and unless you have space to store them in a shed or garage, chances are they might be showing signs of rust and general wear and tear. You might consider changing up to rattan or a manmade substitute that will prove a little hardier and has the benefit of being able to drain water easily. Upgrade your garden furniture with a whole new look, including a new dining table, chaise longues and so on.

You’ll be able to buy all manner of accessories to make your summer go with a bang, from an outside pizza oven that can also act as a source of heat to a thoroughly modern, fully functional BBQ set complete with hotplates and so on. If you’re going to do BBQ season, you might as well do it with the best piece of kit on the market.

Plants

Don’t forget your planting scheme. Fill those borders with bright, low maintenance flowers and shrubs that fill your garden with colour and scent. You don’t have to be a gardening expert to produce something impressive, but just ask for recommendations for low hassle flowers at your local gardening centre and you’ll be able to impress everyone with your style. Choose plants that attract wildlife and you’ll soon have a garden complete with a cacophony of buzzing sounds.

Light Up The Party

garden fairy lights

From fairy lights to security lights, you need something to keep the party going. If you prefer a more natural look then go for the option of candles aplenty to create an atmospheric, chilled outside experience. Or opt for low key lightings, like the hanging fairy light options that can be dimmed right down and placed to illuminate more subtly. Why not bring a little extra heat to the garden with a gas heater that combines impressive warmth with a subtle downlight.

You also have the option of solar lights that can be placed at strategic points around the garden and that will glow as the sun sets, using up the energy they’ve stored during the day. A cost effective method of bringing attention to the parts of the garden you’re proud of.

Summer is right around the corner, so whether you’re planning on giving the garden a complete makeover or just a spring clean, start now and get your green spaces in perfect shape for a summer of entertainment and fun.

Why not treat your younger guests and members of the family with some outside toys. A trampoline always goes down well, as does a swing set. If you have the space, then bring out those garden cricket and tennis sets and throw up a badminton net between a couple of trees, or better still a hammock.

Start with a general tidy up, getting your grass cut to the right length. Give your hard surfaces a once over so they’re shining clean and ready to take new furniture. Treat yourself to a new set and get rid of anything rusty and old that doesn’t go with your overall look. Then you’re ready to road test that new BBQ. Give the chef in in your life a new set of BBQ utensils and they’ll be raring to get it fired up.

Then all that’s left to do is lay back on your new recliner, cocktail in hand and listen to the sound of the birds and bees taking advantage of your newly planted borders and enjoying the garden almost as much as you.

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