Our most recent move has come with a delightful bonus: gorgeous outdoor spaces! Okay, they're not gorgeous yet, but they have tons of potential. We've gathered a list of things that can be done to start prepping your outdoor spaces for the fun summer months ahead!
While you might be tempted to go out and start buying up all kinds of cute new outdoor furnishings as soon as the weather gets warm, we suggest you do a little prepwork beforehand so that your outdoor space becomes as good as it can be. Starting off with the sort of un-fun stuff first will pay off big in the end:
1. Clean Sounds obvious right? Don't just sweep the leaves off the patio and dust off the chair cushions, really get in there. Power wash the exterior if you can and scrub stains and mildew off furniture. Some posts to check out for more outdoor cleaning ideas and tips: Best Green Cleaning Products 2009, Cleaning Marble Stoops, Windex Outdoor and Clean Patio Furniture.
2. Repairs Take an honest look at your outdoor space. Does a shutter need to be re-hung? A step repaired? Before the summer entertaining season is the perfect time to make a list of all those repairs your outdoor spaces have been needing. Some inspiring posts: Spruce Up the Dining Patio, Light up darkened pathways and entries, Fix Those Drafty Windows and Perforated Gutter Protection
Painting Now's also the perfect time to get some painting done. Refresh the colors you already have, or get inspired and pick a new palette! Just make sure you're using paints that will withstand whatever weather you have in your region. Don't neglect the impact of "non-traditional" painted surface options, either—floors, ceilings, furniture, even brick and concrete could be potential places for new colors and patterns. Check out these colorful ideas: A Brightly Painted Front Door, Help with Exterior Paint Color, Rusty Terracotta Reds, Before & After and Ideas to Improve Curb Appeal of My Home.
Tame nature Next up is making sure the natural part of your outdoor space is up to snuff. Trim hedges, prune and repot plants, and tend to any injured or dying plants that didn't make it through the winter. This is BEFORE you start buying new plants. Take an inventory of what you have while you work so you know what to add to your collection. Here are some outdoor nature taming tips: Best Garden Tips, Tricks and Inspiration, Small-Space Gardening Tips , A Non Toxic Way to Kill Weeds and Weeding with Vinegar.
What will you be doing to prepare your outdoor spaces for the warm months ahead? What's on the to-do-list that you most look forward to or are dreading the most? Let us know!