There’s something exciting about the start of March in Calgary. In most years, it’s knowing that the worst of winter is behind you and you can start to see the snowpack melt and disappear on a daily basis. The days get longer and you’ll feel more warmth in the air, meaning that spring is just around the corner. With spring comes your spring yard cleanup and Calgary residents know that it’s a short season to get everything in order before the temperatures start to rise. Many homeowners feel a mix of excitement about being able to get back out in the yard after the long winter months, while others feel a sense of trepidation knowing the amount of work that awaits them. This handy to-do list will get your yard looking in top shape this summer.
At the heart of any spring yard cleanup project is your lawn. For most Calgary homeowners, this is the jewel in the crown of your yard whether it’s an outdoor play space for the kids or somewhere to relax and host summer parties. However, the cold weather, snow and ice can take a toll on your lawn, so follow these simple spring landscaping tips:
- Clear up debris – once the last of the snow has melted away, your first spring task is to clear up any debris that got covered by the first snow fall. This includes fallen leaves, branches and twigs and any pet messes that you haven’t cleaned up during winter. Removing this allows the maximum amount of heat, water and sunshine to reach the grass and soil.
- Fix bare patches – it’s likely that you’ll have one or two bare patches where the grass died and no new seeds are growing. To patch these, buy some quick growing grass seeds and combine it with loose soil. Gently rake the bare patch and add the seed/soil combination. You’ll need to make sure you water it well until shoots start to grow.
- Watch the weather – the temptation to start watering is high as it’s the biggest indicator of a luscious green lawn, but the Calgary spring also brings a lot of rain. Watch the weather forecast to see when you’re expecting rain and how much, and use this as a guide as to how much additional water you need add during the spring months.
Trees and Shrubs
Spring is always a time for new growth and your trees and shrubs will quickly start to bud and send out new branches as the weather warms up and the days get longer. As the trees are in growing mode, however, spring is also the perfect time to prune, but pruning is an art form, as too little can result in overcrowding, while too much can kill off your plant. A good place to start is to look for dead (no new buds) or diseased (growing mold) branches and cut them off at the root of the branch. Next, look for branches that overhang walkways or that are intersecting with other branches. Finally, look at the overall shape of the tree or shrub and cut back branches to invite more sunlight and air in to nourish the new buds. If in doubt, Scoop’s professional spring cleanup services will be able to give you some guidance on how to prepare your trees and shrubs for optimal growth.
Flower and Vegetable Beds
Just as with your lawn, your flowers make up an integral part of the aesthetic of your yard. For many, they create colorful borders, and for vegetable growers, they represent a solid food source throughout the summer. Follow these tips to prepare your beds for a great growing season:
- Clear out debris – in a similar style to your lawn, fallen debris blocks sunlight and rainwater from providing essential nourishment to your dormant plants. Clear out branches and twigs, and gather the leaves to start a new compost pile.
- Mulch – there are two steps to correctly mulching your garden beds in spring. The first is to clear out last year’s mulch, especially if it was non-organic. This removes any possible molding issues from trapped moisture, as well as any unwanted hibernating pests. The next is to wait until your beds are completely ready before adding the new mulch. This stops you (and your family) from walking on the beds and compacting the soil too much.
- Make space – the whole point of flower and vegetable beds is to encourage controlled growth, but even with borders your plants will want to expand as far as they can. Use your spring clean up time to thin out overcrowded beds as this will encourage better growth for the plants that you leave behind.
Patios and Decks
The final part of a spring yard cleanup Calgary homeowners have to think about is preparing your entertaining spaces for the summer season. This starts by sweeping and/or hosing down your deck or patios to remove all dirt and debris that could cause rotting later in the season (as well as making everything look clean!). Next, you’ll want to remove any mildew by mopping down the surfaces with a mixture of chlorine bleach, laundry detergent and buckets of warm water. Finally, take a soapy solution to your furniture, paying careful attention to rattan or wicker pieces that can hold moisture and dirt in hidden spaces.
Get Professional Help
After a long Calgary winter, some people will actively look forward to the spring yard cleanup process as a way of getting back outside. For others, it represents a series of unwanted chores that stand in the way of a enjoyable summer. In both cases, calling in Scoop Cut N Shovel’s landscaping experts is a great way to get ideas about how to best prepare your yard and reduce the tedious workload. There are 3 levels to choose from that can include blow outs of your hedges and beds, our signature Power Raking service and an initial cut of your lawn. Call today to set up your spring yard cleanup services this season.