Before long it will be spring, and just when we’re getting used to it, it’ll suddenly be summer. With that said, it’s worth thinking about what you’re going to do in your garden to ensure it provides you with happiness and relaxation during the upcoming warmer months. If you’re looking for some inspiration, you’ll find the following ideas helpful.
It’s worth noting first and foremost that the most popular trend of 2019 is to create a garden that’s as low maintenance as possible. “But how?” I hear you ask. Well, you’ll have to opt for low-maintenance plants that don’t require much watering and perhaps invest in artificial grass that doesn’t need to be mowed. The idea is that you create a beautiful space you can enjoy, without having to put in much effort. After all, how can you sit back and enjoy your garden if you constantly have to maintain it.
A popular for many garden lovers this year is the creation of a secluded retreat. This is particularly prevalent amongst larger gardens and could be as simple as converting your summer house into an outdoor yoga room or a little library where you can go to read in the peace and quiet. Alternatively, you could install a separate seating area with a fire pit; great for teenagers to hang out with their friends on a Friday night. Fire pits are actually really trendy at the minute, and are ideal for the chillier nights when you want to get cosy.
If you’re looking to sell your home in 2019, you might want to consider the curb appeal of your front garden, rather than focussing solely on your back garden. Improving curb appeal can be as simple as planting some shrubbery or you might want to put in a little extra effort and install a new picket fence. A fence upgrade will probably be essential if you’ve been hit with some extreme weather conditions during winter.
Just because Summer is becoming a distant memory it is no excuse to abandon and neglect our garden. For many of us our garden is an extension of our home and Autumn and Winter are some of the most beautiful times to see our gardens, as we watch the changes through the seasons.
If your garden still needs some TLC but you are limited on your budget, there are some things that you can do that won’t break the bank and will get your garden looking beautiful even as the weather takes a turn for the worst.
Add some Winter Plants
Plants are not just for planting in Spring, there are some lovely plants that will sprout and grow in Winter. One of the best plants for Winter is the pansy. Pansies are just perfect for winter bedding displays as they will bloom for far longer than any other winter flowering bedding plant. Sweet Williams and Forget-Me-Nots are also great choices.
If you are planting with a view to the plants lasting through Winter, and want to create some attractive pots, you may decide to opt for something like the Cotswold range of planters from Stewart Gardens. These planters are very attractive as they are based on traditional stone buildings that you find in the Cotswolds, but they are actually very long-lasting:as they are lightweight, frost-proof, shockproof and UV resistant, making them perfect for harsh Winter conditions.
Another way that you can tidy up and update your outdoor space is with a lick of paint. Whether it be for walls or for fences, there is a clear trend moving towards beautiful pastel colour shades that enhance and reflect the colours of a garden. Valspar paint do a great range of masonry and wood paint for the outdoors that can add interest to the outdoors. You can test out the colours by getting one of their tester pots beforehand – so if you feel like being adventurous but are not sure, you can test out your colour first.
Valspar is widely available at branches of B&Q, you can calculate how much paint you would need for your fence or wall by using the calculator on their website here.
Car boot finds
Take a little inspiration from Mediterranean gardens and yards by looking around car boots. Car boot sales don’t disappear with the sunshine and are a popular way to spend Sunday mornings and you can often pick up bits of pottery that can look good as a design feature. Old chairs can be painted and used as pot storage, whilst you can even pick up a bistro set like the one below which was £15 with the two chairs.
If you are fortunate enough to own a summer house, there are certain tasks that must be carried out in the spring, as the cold winter disappears and you look forward to a lovely long summer in your summer house. Like any structure, a summer house needs to be well-maintained and kept clean, and with that in mind, here are some useful tips to ensure that your summer house is ready for the coming summer.
- Apply Timber Preservative – Your summer house should be constructed using seasoned timber, which does require some preservation, and prior to adding a couple of coats of varnish, you might want to apply a coat of stain, which will restore the timber to its original look. Make sure you brush the timber first with a soft brush, which will remove dirt and dust that has built up over the winter months. If you do not yet have a summer house, there are online companies with a wide range of summer houses for sale, and make sure you buy from an established company, and one that offers a lengthy warranty.
- Wash the Windows – The exterior surface of the windows will no doubt be very dirty and the best way to clean them is with soapy water, a sponge, and a window cleaner’s squeegee. The sponge will help to remove stubborn marks like bird excrement, and the squeegee makes light work of finishing up. The inside can also be cleaned with glass cleaner and some dry rags, leaving your windows spotlessly clean to give you a wonderful view.
- Remove and Clean Insect Screens – Almost all summer houses will have insect screens, which are usually removable and the best way to clean them is with soapy water and a hand brush. Brush both sides of the mesh and then use a pressured water spray to remove the dirt, grime and excess soap. If you are thinking of adding insect screens, there is an article online that looks at the many benefits that fly screens bring.
- Air Conditioning – If your summer house has an A/C unit, the filters should be thoroughly cleaned and the coolant level should also be checked, and if you are either unable – or unwilling to tackle this, your local service engineer would be happy to carry out the maintenance for you. He could do this when he services the main A/C in the house, which should also be serviced prior to summer.
- Thorough Roof Inspection – This should be done as a matter of course and the guttering should be cleaned out, as it will likely be full of wet leaves and small twigs, which causes a blockage, and a heavy downpour will have water cascading down the exterior walls, something you want to avoid. More info on the implications of this can be found online, or there are always firms such as Clean Pro Gutter Cleaning Pittsburgh, who can also provide more info. Any missing roof tiles should be replaced, or if your roof is of felt covering, make sure there are no rips or tears, and any nails that are protruding should be hammered home.
Your summer house will give you many years of enjoyment, providing it is well-maintained, and if you have yet to add a summer house to your garden, now is the perfect time to start looking, as the summer house can be in position and ready for use when the summer finally arrives.