February 27th, 2019 12:22 PM by MARGARET MICHELLE WILLIAMSON
Spring is in the air. It’s time for a little spring cleaning to set the stage for summer. This is the perfect time to spruce up the landscaping. Here is a list to get you started.
DEBRIS REMOVAL IS THE KEY TO A HEALTHY GREEN LAWN
Walk around the property and remove any fallen branches and other debris that have landed on the grass or in the flowerbeds. Rake up dead leaves from the grass and garden areas. Dead leaves will prevent the grass from growing. You can grind up the leaves and branches for mulch, or dispose of them according to the regulations in your community.
SPRUCE UP YOUR TREES & SHRUBS
Trim damaged tree limbs. Proper treatment of damaged limbs will prevent the tree from dying. If you lack the skill or equipment, hire a professional tree trimmer to do the work for you. Also prune back overgrown bushes and any parts that may have been damaged by winter weather. Dead branches can always be pruned. But be careful about pruning flowering shrubs. Pruning flowering shrubs in the spring will cut off the buds and eliminate the flowers. If you have any pruning questions, consult your local nursery.
THE GRASS IS ALWAYS GREENER WITH A LITTLE EARLY-SEASON CARE
If the lawn looks weak and damaged, dethatch and aerate it to improve its ability to grow. Consider applying a pre-emergent to combat early weeds. Add seed to any bare or thin areas. And fertilize lawns to help them grow green and strong. Most fertilizers also contain weed control chemicals.
MANICURE THE GARDENS WITH FRESH PLANTS
After clearing out any debris, remove any garden plants that may have died and replace with fresh plants from your local nursery. Add fresh mulch to the garden bed for color, texture, and weed control. Fresh mulch also improves the garden’s soil quality. You can add some contrast by using two different mulches with different coloring.
Consider adding permanent edging, such as bricks or pavers, to your gardens. It can add a decorative appearance and eliminate the need to use edging equipment every time the lawn is cut.
FROM FIREPITS TO PONDS: DEEP CLEAN THE HARDSCAPE
Examine water features such as bird baths and water falls for dirt and damage. Clean the surfaces completely and repair any damage. Check the fire pit for damage and clean that area too. Pressure washing these areas (after pollen season is over) can bring them back to life. While you’re at it, pressure wash or clean your patio furniture and the patio or deck surfaces. These areas will shine and sparkle and look like new.
While it’s not part of the landscape, consider pressure washing the exterior of the house. A clean house will look brighter and fresher and improve the curb appeal of your home.
EVEN IF IT MAKES YOU SHUDDER, YOU'VE GOT TO CLEAN OUT THE GUTTERS
Spring is a good time to clean the gutters. Make sure that your gutters are working and draining properly. Backed up gutters can cause damage to the house. Downspouts should also flow freely. And the drains should flow away from the house to prevent damage. Add extensions to the spouts if they end within one foot of the house.
ENSURE THE ELECTRONIC SPRINKLERS ARE IN WORKING ORDER
Once you are certain that the temperatures will not go below freezing at night, it’s time to check out the automatic sprinkler system. Pressurize the system and check for leaks. Also check for proper spray distribution. If necessary, adjust the sprinkler heads and replace any that are damaged. Examine any drip irrigation systems for leaks or clogs. Then plan to check these systems monthly throughout the summer.
ACCENTUATE LANDSCAPED FEATURES WITH LIGHTING
Landscape lighting can enhance the beauty of your home and provide safety. Many systems are solar powered, eliminating the need for extensive electrical work. It’s also a good idea to clean exterior lamps by the doorways. Clean lamps will cast a brighter light.
Spring cleaning your landscape will brighten up your home’s curb appeal. You’ll be happy you completed this task every time you pull into the driveway!
If you are considering buying or selling a home, give us a call. My partner Andrew Palumbo and I both have extensive real estate and construction experience, and we'd be happy to provide tips and feedback on how you can boost your home's curb appeal.