Late winter, early spring is an ideal time to get a head start on cleaning up the yard in preparation for spring. Whenever there is a break in the rainy weather, milder temperatures can be a welcome invitation to get outdoors and give your yard a little TLC. With a bit of organization and preparation, a DIY garden cleanup can be done in half a day or a day, depending on the size of your property.
Get Ready to Get to Work
If you would like to get the job done in record time, first get ready to get to work. Make sure that you have everything you need for your DIY garden clean up project. From garden gloves to a sturdy rake to a garden fork to pruning shears to garbage bags, gathering together the tools and equipment you need before you begin will help things go faster.
Clean Up the Front Yard and the Back Yard
A general tidying up of the front and back yards is the first order of business. Winter can leave a trail of debris and organic matter on the surface of your lawn. This buildup often prevents sun, air, and water, from penetrating the earth and feeding the lawn the nutrients it requires to grow and be healthy. Gently rake the lawn to remove any leaves, twigs, and clumps of debris.
Giving the yard a thorough examination will help you identify areas where junk, forgotten toys, broken equipment and abandoned outdoor furniture have accumulated. This is also an opportunity to deal with eyesores such as unruly recycling bins, broken fencing, or pathways that need replacing or repairing.
Cutting and Pruning
Cut back any overhanging branches and bushes, especially wherever they come into contact with the gutters and siding or exterior walls. Trim branches and remove dead limbs. When limbs that need removing require a ladder, consider hiring an arborist or a tree trimming company. Those winter storms can really do damage to the trees on your property; you don’t want anything falling down on you while you work.
If you didn’t get a chance in the fall to deadhead late-blooming plants, do so now. Trim overgrown edging and borders.
Pull Weeds, Dig up Roots
Go hunting for weeds. When you find them, pull them out or dig them up. Make sure you remove the entire root system or they will come back. Remove dried annuals and dig up old stems and roots. Check for bugs, fungi, or signs of disease – if you do find any organic materials infested with insects or disease, throw them in the garbage instead of on the compost pile or burn them.
Patch up the Lawn
While raking the front yard and the back yard gets rid of unsightly debris, it can also reveal bald spots and other types of damage to the grass. Patch up any gaps or holes in the lawn by reseeding. For the best chance at germination, evenly distribute seed on the damaged area; sprinkle a light layer of topsoil over the seeded area and then water gently.