After the dormant winter months in many parts of the country, many homeowners look forward to the new growth and promise that spring weather brings. If you’ve been cooped up inside during the cold weather and are ready to get back outdoors with your family and friends, it’s time to start thinking about making your yard spring friendly. Here are some tips to get you started:
- Fall and winter can leave behind a lot of things that don’t belong in a lawn or garden. Rake leaves and remove limbs, sticks, and debris from turf and flower beds. In addition to making your yard look better, you’ll be eliminating objects that can inhibit sunlight and nutrients from reaching the plants you want to grow.
- If you have an automatic irrigation system, check the zones and sprinkler heads to make sure all are operating properly for the growing season. Check the control panel, too, for any malfunctioning equipment.
- Have your lawn mower serviced and the blades sharpened before your repair shop gets busy. Check landscaping tools for wear or damage, and connect garden hoses to check for leaks.
- Trim back any tree limbs or shrubbery that could be blocking important sunlight to turf and plants. Look for plants that aren’t budding and may need replacing.
- If you have trouble with weeds growing in your lawn, consider applying a preemergent herbicide. Unlike other types of weed killers, preemergent applications hinder seed germination and help prevent weed seedlings from emerging. Ask your local lawn center about the type and timing recommended for your grass type and location.
- Prepare soil for planting by incorporating organic matter and raking, turning, or tilling it. If you don’t know what type of soil you have, take a sample to your local garden center and find out what other steps may be recommended.
- Clean lawn furniture and apply new coats of paint, stain, or varnish, if necessary. Wash or replace any cushions that are soiled or stained.
- Pressure wash patios, decks, porches, and walkways to remove dirt and slippery surfaces that winter weather can leave behind. If you have enclosed outdoor areas, repair any torn screens to keep insects out.
- Clean flower pots and containers, line with fillers to help improve drainage, and fill with soil to get ready for planting season.
- Make a list of items you’ll need to keep on hand during the growing season, such as mulch, fertilizer, lawn and leaf bags, topsoil, and other garden supplies. Shop around for the best prices and see if buying frequently used items in bulk can be economical. Doing this can also help save trips to garden and home centers.
Getting your yard ready for spring is an exciting and fun time. Tackling the big lawn tasks before the weather gets too hot can increase your enjoyment of gardening and can give you a head start on having the best-looking yard in the neighborhood.