Now that winter has passed once more, it is time to start getting the garden ready for a glorious summer. It should only take a few days to get it sorted out so that it will once again be bursting with color and vibrancy to provide that great, attractive space for barbecues and relaxed lunches on the lawn.
Don’t stress much if you are not a professional gardener, these five (5) steps on how to prepare your garden for summer are pretty basic. Without any further ado, below are some of the tasks to bring your garden back to life
1. Remove Weeds
The weeds are usually the first big problem to deal with when the winter is over, and as these will have been accumulating steadily over the months they will probably present a real tangle; they may even be a major factor in why you have been putting off tackling the garden in the first place.
Begin by forking over the soil, removing the weeds as you turn it, and collecting them in a ‘green’ bag for composting. Pull them by hand and make sure you get the roots out intact, otherwise, they will just come back to take their revenge. For weeds between opening and crevices that can be difficult to uproot by hand, tools such as Yarnow can be used to eliminate them.
Once you have turned all of the soil, rake the ground completely clear of surface weeds and leaf mould. If you wish, you can also use a chemical weed killer to eradicate them completely; this will help to ensure that there will be no return.
2. Prepare the soil
The soil will then need to be fertilized to get it ready for fresh planting. Many people neglect this part of gardening, but it is absolutely essential for replenishing the minerals and other components essential for plant growth in summer that will have leached away over the winter months.
Get a compound or organic fertilizer from the local garden center and simply dig it thoroughly into the soil to put the missing nutrients back. An alternative but the lengthier method of recycling weeds themselves to resupply the lost nutrients is to cover the soil with a thick tarpaulin for six months or more to allow them to die and rot back into the soil. If you decide on this completely organic method of eradicating weeds and supplying nutrients, you will need to get started sometime in early November.
Pruning is the next job. To prune a shrub, remove any weeds from around its base and then cut away dead parts of the shrub itself with a sharp pair of secateurs. Check that the plant is still actually alive before you bother to do this by scraping off some of its surface layers to see if the bark below is a greenish-white color, indicating that it is probably okay.
Plant a few fresh plants after that; in most cases, they can go straight into the soil you prepared earlier. Make sure that the hole is considerably bigger than the plant to accommodate the roots, and that it is well watered. You will then need to scatter lawn feed on your lawn and thoroughly water it and remember to mow it to the correct height – which will vary throughout the season – to keep it in peak condition.
5. Tending to the patio
It is also important to clean the patio thoroughly when preparing your garden for the summer. Apply weed killer if weeds have started coming out through the cracks, or use one of the best tools to remove weed between pavers.
Then bring out the garden furniture from storage, dusting it down and arranging it to your satisfaction for barbecues and general relaxation. Also, Investing in a pop-up tent or gazebo can make all the difference when it comes to extending the comfort of the house to include the garden during the hot summer months.