It’s that time of year, when your lush green yard with its immaculately tended landscaping is the scene for fabulous parties and backyard cookouts.
What’s that? Your yard, with its spotty lawn, tangled vines and lackluster flower beds, isn’t exactly party ready?
Well, you’re in luck.
We happen to have a summer landscape maintenance checklist with nine must-dos before the guests arrive.
1. Spruce Up Your Lawn
That large green expanse at the front of your home is one of the first things your guests will notice as they arrive.
Mowing the lawn before your party might seem like a no-brainer, but consider mowing a couple days before your party — not a couple hours. This gives you an extra day or so to clear the walkways of grass clippings, and it saves you the trouble of cutting the grass on the day of the party when you have a lot of other things to do.
A great lawn will give your guests a place to mingle and the kids a place to play. Does it looks its best? Your lawn may need fertilizing or weed killer about a week before your event.
Water a couple days before your party. You don’t want the lawn damp when you’re expecting all that foot traffic, but you want the lawn healthy and not stressed from lack of water.
2. Trim Shrubs And Flowers
Tidy landscaping sets a beautiful outdoor scene and shows you care about your property.
Trim the trees and shrubs around your walkways, so guests get a good first impression. You don’t want a wayward branch to snag your boss’ elegantly coifed hair.
Check your trees for dead or unsightly branches that should come down. If they’re hard to get to, call in a professional.
Scan your planting beds for any dead or scraggly plants that should be yanked and replaced.
3. Clean Up Driveway And Walkways
It was a rough winter here in New York and Connecticut. A long winter of salt and shoveling, freezing and thawing, can take a toll on hardscaping. Clean off paths and repair any crumbling surfaces. Check your patio, too.
4. Check Your Deck
Party guests love to hang out on the deck. Inspect your deck for signs of decaying wood, loose railings, or stained boards before it’s filled with people.
Once you know it’s safe, spruce it up by cleaning it and, if necessary, re-staining.
5. Inspect Your Outdoor Lighting
If your party will be going strong after sundown, make sure your outdoor lighting is working properly, so guests can safely walk around your property after dark.
Check patio and deck lighting and replace bulbs if needed. Make sure the lights along your walkways and driveway are working properly.
You might add to the festive mood by stringing some bistro lights or white holiday lights around your deck or patio. Garden torches are another fun addition.
6. Banish The Bugs
Nothing ruins a party like a hoard of biting bugs.
Before the party, check areas around your property for standing water, including puddles and bird baths, and get rid of the water when possible. Water attracts insects that lay their eggs in the standing water.
If bugs are a big problem on your property, consider hiring a professional to treat your yard before the event.
7. Clean The Pool
Even if you won’t be swimming at your party, your pool is part of the landscape and you want it to look its sparkling best. Swimming pool maintenance is a must.
Check your pool for any leaves, branches or debris that may have blown in.
This is even more important later in the season when trees start to drop more leaves on your property.
8. Pretty The Place Up With Potted Plants
Colorful plants and flowers in containers are a great way to decorate for an outdoor event. You can place them anywhere, even using them as makeshift dividers to create several outdoor rooms.
9. Add Pizzazz With Decor
Once you have your yard tidied up for the big event, it’s time for the fun part: decorations.
Nothing says party like a collection of colorful paper lanterns strung overhead.
They come in hundreds of different shapes, sizes, colors, and finishes and can be strung from tree branches or cable.
Hang them on their own or illuminate them with battery-powered lights for a festive glow.
You can even connect the lanterns to a universal remote control so you can switch them all on or off at the same time. Plan on about seven hours of operation time.
Other outdoor lighting trends include cafe lighting, with twinkling strings of bulbs strung overhead. Not only does it help create a festive atmosphere, but it adds lighting for backyard parties that last into the night.
Consider lighting the way to your party, with glittering lights in shrubs, along pathways or on ground stakes to guide guests to the fun.
Let Neave Handle Your Landscape Maintenance Checklist
Planning a backyard party is a lot of work. We hope this summer landscape maintenance checklist will help you keep you focused and on task. After all, you have enough to do. That said, why not let the experts at Neave Group Outdoor Solutions get your property ready for the party?
If you’re in the Hudson Valley, call us at (845) 463-0592. If you’re in Westchester County, call (914) 271-7996; from Connecticut, dial (203) 212-4800. Or, fill out our simple web form, and we’ll contact you about setting up your free consultation.