As the days lengthen and get warmer, homeowners begin turning their thoughts to their outdoor living spaces. Those areas can take a beating during winter, necessitating a springtime cleanup in order to get the space ready for summer entertaining. Now is the time to assess what needs to be done, while the weather is warm enough, but well before you’ll use your patio daily. By following these tips now, you’ll ensure that your patio will be bright and inviting for the coming season.
Trim Dead Branches and Sweep. Prune broken or dead branches from bushes and trees near your patio and sweep away leaves prior to washing the area to make the job easier.
Whisk Away Dirt and Grime. Winter winds can bring mud, leaves and other debris onto your patio. Chances are your furniture, if left outside, also is looking dingy. One of the first things that patio lovers should do is thoroughly clean the patio surface with a hose and broom. Mix dish washing soap with warm water in bucket and then spray furniture with a hose. Scrub chairs and sofa with a nylon scrub brush and then thoroughly rinse. Let the furniture dry off in the grass. You may need to wipe water that gets trapped in metal supports. Select a sunny day for your work to speed drying time. If the patio surface or furniture is particularly grimy, consider using a power washer.
Assess Lighting. If you have permanent outdoor lighting, check to see that all fixtures are working. Like greenery, some may not have survived the winter. Spring is a good time to replace old bulbs with more efficient LED fixtures or even replace them with solar Tiki torches that will add a bit of fun to your outdoor festivities. If you use overhead light strands, make sure that all bulbs are working.
Planters. Wooden planters fall apart after several years. Discard questionable ones and check for cracks in ceramic containers. Replace as appropriate.
Food and Beverage. Light your grill to ensure that it is working properly and clean the grates before the year’s first barbecue. Consider adding an outdoor beverage center than can double as storage to make entertaining more enjoyable.