As I write this, we’re apparently on the cusp of a “scorcher” – which for most people means break out the BBQ and dare to bare the toes. My idea of a scorcher is about 10 degrees warmer than most people’s so I won’t be holding my breath. BUT I do know that lovely summer days must surely be right around the corner, it is June after all. With that in mind, I’ve been getting our garden ready for summer and thought I’d share some tips to make sure you’ve got all bases covered.
Clean The Patio
This one has jumped right to the top of my list as last week we had our drive and patio jetwashed for the FIRST time since we’ve lived here, more than 5 years. And knowing how slack the previous owners were, goodness only knows when it was last done and I can’t BELIEVE the difference. It’s like we’ve got a totally different patio, although it can definitely do with repointing.
Invest In Garden Furniture
At the end of that beautiful summer we had last year, I grabbed some outdoor sofas in the sale to create a little outdoor living area. It felt a bit daft doing it right at the end of September but I knew we’d get some early heat this year and it proved to be a perfect masterstroke with the lovely Easter we just had. Don’t forget your cover though, as our summers do seem to be getting warmer it’s important to have shade. We’ve got quite a big patio area and so Cantilever parasols are a fabulous idea to provide maximum shade and a variety of solutions as the sun moves.
I’m a little bit obsessed with painting outdoor spaces at the moment. It’s so much more freeing than painting indoors where I think you have to be more precise. I’ve recently painted our backdoor and one of the drainpipes and it’s incredible how much fresher the space looks. I’m itching to paint the wall all around the patio but need to get a little bit of buy in from the husband since I’m not sure he’ll initially think it’s a good idea.
Repotting The Plants
Last year we bought a Canna simply because I was attracted to the extravagant flowers when I saw it in bloom at the garden centre. I’m about as non-green fingered as it’s possible to be and thought it would just bloom one year and that would be it. I was overjoyed this year to see little shoots peeping through and now it’s about 3 inches high. It’s amazing to think it will hopefully bloom just as beautifully as it did last year. I’ve still got a few different sized pots that need planting up and I try to stagger to make sure we have things flowering throughout the summer season
These days if Pinterest and Instagram are anything to go by, people are spending as much time thinking about their garden areas as they do planning indoor space. The bar is high to create the most Insta-worthy garden and accessories are everything. Fortunately most outdoor lighting is relatively inexpensive and solar lights look just beautiful. We’ve got festoons strung up via the outdoor power socket and I can’t wait for balmy evenings to enjoy a cheeky G&T in the late sunshine.
Think Outside The Box
Here in London as in most cities, outdoor space can often be at a premium but there’s so many innovative designs on the market to help with that. Even the smallest balcony, step or even drainpipe can be jazzed up with a bit of imaginative thinking. Pick up a couple of hanging baskets that only need to go on the walls, or grab a couple of drainpipe pop holders to hide the more practical aspects of your home and decorate them with flowers instead.
Mow The Lawn
As much as I do love this time of year, our behemoth of a lawn feels like it needs mowing almost every other day. Thankfully it’s one of Pete’s jobs to keep it in check and it always looks so good once its been cut back down to size. Maddie loves to roll on the short grass too and it helps to keep the daisies and weeds at bay. I know a few people have invested in fake grass but whilst I’m all about shortcuts, I’m not sure I’m ready for that step just yet.
Hopefully you’re feeling inspired to get out there and tackle your spaces, although knowing most of you it’s already well under control. And don’t forget – stay out of the direct sun kids. In case we ever more out of London and end up in that country bolthole I’ve got my eye on the Solero Palestro Pro. You know, just to make sure it’s big enough of course. Have a super summer!
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