Get your garden party ready
Winter is behind you! Summer is in front. Spring is the perfect time for getting outdoors. Now that the days are beginning to stretch and lighten, it’s time to unlock the shed, dig out a few tools and get your green space back into shape.
There is nothing quite like the rising sun kissing the dew of your lawn to encourage you to don your gardening gloves and grab a rake.
Give your grass some love
If your lawn is patchy it will need re-seeding. Go over it with a rake.
This serves two functions: first, it helps you gather any moss and twigs, which you can simply toss onto your compost heap. The second benefit of raking is that it scars the soil. The scars provide perfect little troughs for seeds to fall into. Scattering a little fertiliser on top will help speed up the growth of your new grass.
During any prolonged sunny spells, remember to water your lawn so it doesn’t dry out.
A visit to the garden centre is sure to inspire you. Most are teeming with people who are passionate about their subject, so they’re invariably happy to help. It’s useful to take a sketch along with you to show the salesperson what your space looks like. Explain what you’re trying to achieve and they’re sure to provide some useful hints and tips. If you know what you want, write a list, as you would when you go food shopping. This will keep you focused, so you can be sure you buy all the products you need to create your perfect garden.
Weed out your weeds
You’re sure to have gained a few weeds since you were last in the garden. Get rid of your unwanted guests by pulling them out and transferring them to the compost heap. A layer of cardboard – or a few layers of mulch – on top of the soil will help deter their return.
This is also a good time to till. Squeeze a chunk of soil with your fingers and, if it crumbles, it’s time to start removing stones and other unwanted debris. If your soil is holding moisture, give it a few days to dry out. Only start planting a couple of weeks after you have finished tilling.
Food for thought
Rather than throwing food waste into the bin, you can use it in the garden. Some leftovers are particularly useful. Banana peel is said to repel aphids, for example. Bury just a little beneath the surface to keep these pests at bay without attracting rodents to your garden.
Crushed eggshells are also tricky for little legs to traverse. Sprinkle a few around the plants you want to protect from slugs and other insects that prefer softer ground. The calcium in eggshells is also good for your soil.
The phosphorous, potassium and magnesium found in coffee grounds suits plants like azaleas that prefer acidic soil. Nutshells provide soil aeration; though the juglone in walnuts is toxic to plants.
If you have gone to all the trouble of making your garden look fabulous it would simply be rude not to show it off to your friends and family! Throw off your barbecue’s winter cover and invite them round. Check out recipes you can try here.
Many Redrow homes have French doors that act as an open invitation for your guests to drift out into the fresh air. Dot lights about your lawn so people can watch their step. Barrels or buckets of ice will keep drinks chilled (halved lemons and limes also add zesty colour). And remember that your get-together should be full of fun. Giant versions of popular games like Jenga and Dominoes provide the playfulness no good party is complete without.