You may have finished spring cleaning your house months ago, but now that the sun is out and the days are long, it is time to start thinking about summer cleaning for outdoor fun. Summer is best spent on clean, lush lawns, surrounded by big, bright blooms, but it’s more than likely that this year’s long winter has made a mess of your yard.
Before you can bask in the sun and enjoy the excitement of the season, you must tidy up the outdoors for space to play and relax. Summer cleaning is just as rewarding as the spring variety; here’s how to get it done fast so you can start enjoying summer early.
After the rains of spring have ended, typical pests will invade your yard, taking advantage of the healthy, new growth for food and shelter. Unfortunately, most fauna that share your garden space will slowly destroy your beautiful yard and make spending time outdoors unbearable for you and your guests. Outdoor pests in Virginia come in all shapes and sizes, from crawling aphids to bounding deer, but it is important that you safeguard your yard from all of them with the appropriate measures.
For example, you can take care of aphids by regularly spraying your plants with a strong jet of water. Insecticides and horticultural oils also work, as do hordes of garden-friendly ladybugs, which you can find at your local garden shop. Other pests, like slugs and snails, should be removed by hand, and larger pests, like rabbits and deer, can only be kept away with fences and traps.
Cleaning up after a few months of neglect is time-consuming, back-breaking work, but after a weekend of raking, weeding, pruning, and shoveling, your yard will be that much closer to summer-ready. Here are a few steps to get you started.
- Rake dead leaves and debris from lawn
- Prune dead and diseased limbs from woody plants
- Thin out branches on summer blooming plants
- Pull weeds wherever they have sprouted, and spray border regions with weed killer
After a long winter hibernating and a short spring of rampant growth, it’s likely that every plant in your garden needs some attention. To manage all the detritus you will collect from your yard, you may want to consider dumpster rental in Richmond, as you will probably have more waste than will fit in your regular bins or the compost pile.
Care for Your Lawn
The goal is to make your lawn look effortless, but in reality, your lawn will likely be the most labor-intensive element of your yard. A perfect green lawn requires all sorts of paraphernalia as well as patience and dedication. Unlike cleaning and planting, which should only occur a few times a season, owning a lawn is weekly responsibility. Here are the steps for basic lawn care:
- Re-seed. Any bare patches need new seed.
- Aerate. Conditioner products easily add oxygen to soil for better root growth.
- Mow. Blades should reach 2.5 to 3.5 inches tall.
- Fertilize. You should limit the feeding to .5 pounds of nitrogen per 1,000 feet of lawn.
- Repeat. Frequent lawn care produces a stronger, healthier lawn that crowds out weeds.
Plant Seasonal Flowers and Greenery
Inevitably, a few of your garden beds probably didn’t survive the cold weather months, which means you need to replace the dead and dying plants with fresh ones. Planting is perhaps the most exciting step in summer yard maintenance because it allows for some novelty and creativity. For the most impact, you should plant summer blooms and other seasonal plants which will thrive in the warm weather and produce a beautiful backdrop to your summer fun. Finally, be sure to add mulch on top to protect your soil and make garden beds look more attractive.
Add Some Fun
After all the plants are tended to, you can start imagining what summer activities you want to host in your yard. The warm weather and sunshine is ideal for all sorts of outdoor fun. Trampolines, swing sets, and jungle gyms may entice your kids to spend time in the fresh air, while a new grill, a fire pit, or even a hot tub could provide extra reasons for friends and family to gather in your yard. However, all most people need to enjoy their summer-ready yards are a comfortable lawn chair and a bottle of sun screen.