How To Get Your Backyard Ready For Summer: DIY Yard Cleaning Tips

Written by Posted On Tuesday, 18 June 2019 14:13

Roll up your sleeves and get ready to get some dirt under your fingers! Don’t wait for summer to arrive, give your backyard a good spring cleaning!

As the rains of spring begin to subside and the daylight hours gradually lengthen, you may begin to notice signs of life burgeoning in your backyard.

Winter’s thaw has melted, revealing those unsightly patches barren of color, wilted leaves, garbage and other debris that makes your yard look more like a graveyard of failed hopes than a refuge of solitude.

Your lawn needs your tender loving care to stay healthy, vibrant and inviting. Follow our tips below and your backyard will spring to life again!

Clear All Weeds from Your Lawn

Any rake with a long handle should do the job. A long handle means less bending for you and allows you to reach more easily between shrubs, under fences, patio decks, and other hard-to-reach places.

Remove any weeds left behind from last season by digging them out at the root otherwise, they’ll be sure to grow back. It’s also a good idea to organize your yard cleaning – waste, recyclable waste, and compost. Create separate piles for each as you clean and dispose in sealable bins when ready.

Aerate Your Lawn with a Soil Conditioner

A healthy, vibrant lawn is the result of a good supply of water, oxygen, sun, and nutrients. Aerating your lawn will help improve the circulation of all four elements right down to the roots.

 Applying a soil conditioner adds much-needed microorganisms to the soil in your yard, promoting healthy growth and lush color throughout. You can usually find soil conditioner at your local home improvement store, or large department store chains.

Re-seed & Fertilize Any Bare or Brown Patches on Your Lawn

The unsightly brown patches that form on your lawn during the winter months can be caused by fungus growth, pet urine, grubs, or simple weed dieback.

Before reseeding these areas, you’ll first need to loosen the soil beneath these patches to a depth of 2 – 4 inches. Next, level out the soil and spread a new layer of grass seed and fertilizer compost over it. Finally, tamp the soil to ensure the seeds are packed in firm, and water as required.

growing plants

Tip: Resist the urge to fertilize your entire lawn this early in the season. Instead, give your grass some time to grow and lengthen. After your first lawn cut, then you can apply fertilizer which will further stimulate growth.

Prune Dead, Diseased, or Broken Limbs from Trees & Bushes

Give your trees and plants a healthy start to the summer by carefully pruning away diseased, dead, and broken limbs. This will make room for new growth and promote healthy circulation in your trees, plants, and shrubs after a long, dormant winter.

If you’ve never pruned your trees and shrubs before, be sure to get the right tools for the job. Sawing, hacking or wrenching away dead limbs only increases stress to an already damaged plant or tree.

A pruning tool kit, shears, and power saws are specially designed for the job of cutting and shaping wood. They’ll make your job much easier and reduce the risk of further damaging your plants and shrubs while pruning.

Layer the Soil at Base of Trees & Plants

It’s a good idea to Layer the Soil at base of trees and plants with 2 – 3 inches of natural mulch. After all, natural mulch is a great fertilizer. It deters the growth of weeds while stimulating the growth of soil microorganisms.


Mulch also helps the soil retain moisture and moderates the temperature as the summer heat intensifies. Recycled rubber mulch is best for trees. Organic mulch is great for your plants and shrubs.

Clean Your Patio Furniture

After months of unused, patio furniture can become a nesting place for dirt. Luckily, patio furniture is designed to be washable.

Give your chairs and tables a good wash with a damp cloth, warm water, and mild dishwashing soap. Rinse them off with your garden hose and let air dry. Lastly, follow the directions on your patio cushions for machine washing.

Clean Your BBQSmoker or Grill

What’s a great summer without a BBQ? Now that summer is just around the corner, you’ll want to inspect your smoker or grill before firing it up again.

Most modern electric smokers and grills are made of durable stainless steel or metal. Leaks can occur, however, in the sealing around doors and lids. Small cracks can also appear in the hose that attaches propane to your grill. Left untended, these leaks pose a serious fire hazard and reduce the heat efficiency of your smoker or grill.


If you happen to notice damage to knobs, seals, vents or doors, check the warranty on your grill or smoker to see if you are covered for replacement parts. You’ll be surprised to find out what the warranty covers and in many cases ordering replacements are much cheaper than buying a new unit.

Be sure to thoroughly clean the cooking grates, cooking chamber, lid, doors, and the interior of your smoker or grill. Charred remains from previous cooking, along with soot buildup can taint the flavor of your food and introduce harmful bacteria.

First time cleaning your smoker? Check out our electric smoker cleaning guide for helpful tips.

Clean Out Your Gutters

Leaves, garbage, and other debris can easily accumulate in gutters over the winter months. As the snow thaws, water in your gutters can also get trapped by the buildup of dirt and debris. Removing the clutter

will extend the life of your roof and keep your gutters functioning in top order.

A step ladder and harness are important tools for cleaning out your gutters and downspouts safely.

Clean Your Chimney Flue

Along with cleaning out your gutters, you should also consider inspecting and cleaning out your chimney flue. You can hire a professional contractor if you’re uncomfortable with heights or simply would rather someone else do it.

You may not be using your fireplace during the summer but why wait until fall to clean it out? Waiting till then will actually be more costly and time-consuming as the layers of soot and black carbon harden over the summer.

Clean Your Recycling Bins

Recycling and compost bins are easily overlooked but they suffer a lot of wear and tear. They can also attract unwanted company. Clean garbage bins sealed properly are not as inviting to hungry critters like squirrels, skunks, and raccoons.


Use your garden hose and some dishwashing soap to give the inside and outside of your recycling bins a good wash down. Air them out to remove lingering odors.

Inspect Your Air Conditioning Unit Before Activating

Before turning up the air conditioning this summer, inspect your air conditioning unit for any damage over the winter. Clear away any cobwebs, leaves, or other debris that might obstruct the air vent by hand. Then use a vacuum cleaner with a soft brush attachment to remove any remaining debris.

Next, use a damp cloth to wash the exterior of your air conditioner. Once dry, spray the exterior with a coil cleaner. Give the cleaner 10 -15mn before wiping off the foam. Follow this routine at least once a year and your air conditioner will last a lot longer.

The long, dark winter has finally passed, and the outdoors are beckoning. Your neglected backyard needs your TLC to restore it to health and beauty once again.

Enjoy the process and you’ll be rewarded for your patience and effort. Soon you’ll be enjoying a thriving, vibrant backyard full of color and life with friends and family, making priceless memories together.

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