How to get your home and garden ready for the summer

Summer is finally on its way, and it is time to enjoy the sun and fresh air. The arrival of better weather means we can turn off the heating and open those windows. But how else can we prepare our homes and gardens for summer? Here are some ideas.

1Image by Andrew Hayward, shared under a Creative Commons Licence

Make use of the conservatory

If you have a conservatory, summer is the time to start using it to its full potential. It’s during this time that you can best take advantage of the natural light and warmth provided by all those windows. Perhaps you could invest in some comfy conservatory furniture to make the space cosy and inviting. You could also add potted plants so that the space becomes an indoor extension of the garden.

Light and airy
Now’s a great time to give all the windows in your house a good clean to let in the maximum amount of that warm sunlight that shines at this time of year. After having had the heating on all winter, it’s also a good idea to air out rooms by throwing the windows open and spring-cleaning can be a satisfying way to leave the colder months behind and spruce up your house in time for the new season.

Saving Energy
Summer is the time to save money on energy bills. As well as turning off your heating, you can switch to air-drying clothes instead of using the tumble drier. You may also want to encourage the kids to play outside and spend less time watching TV or playing on electronic devices.

Fun for the kids
Time outside has loads of advantages for kids, and you can help to make the garden more appealing by adding toys and games. Perhaps you could invest in a swing, slide or climbing frame. Playhouses and sports equipment are also inexpensive ways to provide some summer fun for kids.
On those really hot days, paddling pools are an excellent way to provide fun and entertainment for the kids at home. As temperatures rise you could also make ice lollies with the kids using fruit juice, and stock the fridge and freezer with other summer treats.

Preparing the garden
Before the height of summer arrives there are a number of steps you can take to prepare your garden. If you have roses, prune them in spring to encourage healthy blooms. The same goes for other plants with woody stems. It’s time to prepare for the plating of any perennials, too.
Dig out those weeds and turn over the soil in beds, mixing in some nutrient-rich compost. You can then cover the beds in a mulch to guard against weed growth whilst you decide which perennials you want to plant.

Preparing your home and garden for summer can be a great way to draw a line under winter and get exciting about the warmer months. Do you have any home traditions that mark the beginning of summer? What’s your top home and garden tip to prepare for warmer weather?

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