20 September 2017 Get set for spring! As spring rolls around, now's the time to get your outdoor space ready for the warmer weather. Australians love to relax, dine and entertain outside but during the winter months we tend to rug up inside and neglect our outdoor areas. As the weather becomes warmer and the days become longer, spring is the perfect time to get your outdoor space ready to enjoy again. Here are some of the tasks you may need to tackle. Get gardening After a long cold winter, the garden is bound to look a bit dishevelled, so set aside a weekend to get your green space back in order. All plants thrive in spring – including the dreaded weed – so begin by removing all weeds from garden beds and paths. Next, prune back shrubs and deadhead flowers to make way for fresh spring growth. Cover garden beds with mulch to keep weeds at bay and provide an instant lift to a tired-looking garden. Spring is also the ideal time to get planting, allowing plants to become established before the summer heat sets in. Pot plants are an easy way to add pops of colour, especially if your outdoor space is small. They are also easy to move around when you wish to change things up. Scrub up A bit of elbow grease is often all that’s needed to get your outdoor area looking shiny and new again. Use a gurney to remove algae and mould from hard surfaces like pavers, tiles and walls, clear leaves out of roofs and gutters, clean windows and doors and re-oil or re-stain the decking. Rejuvenate your lawn A patch of grass provides so many benefits – purifying the air, cooling the area around it, and providing the perfect place for play and relaxation. However, winter lawns can look dull and patchy, so spring is the time to show your lawn some love. Follow these steps to get your grass looking gorgeous again: Rake up dead grass and leaves to encourage lots of new growth; Re-seed or re-turf areas that are bare; Apply lawn food or slow release fertiliser and keep people off until it has taken off with new growth; Mow the lawn once new grass is established, but be sure not to trim it too short as it can burn in the warmer weather. Style your space Whether it’s an outdoor room or a cosy balcony, your outdoor space should be a stylish extension of your home. To create a comfortable space for relaxing and entertaining, seating is key. Options include outdoor sofas, bench seating, daybeds, ottomans, stools and hammocks. Taking style cues from inside your home, add personality and colour to your outside space with a selection of cushions, rugs, tables, plants and lighting. Create shade To create a practical outdoor area for entertaining all year round, shade is key. Adding a shade structure doesn’t have to be expensive and options include fixed or retractable awnings, pergolas, shade sails, umbrellas and trees. Light it up Strategically placed lighting will help create ambience in your outdoor space and it can be relatively inexpensive. Place solar lights along a path, string up some outdoor fairy lights or simply use candles and lanterns to establish the perfect mood. Quick fixes Fix 1: Declutter your alfresco area by removing rubbish, toys, bikes and garden tools to make way for a stylish outdoor oasis. Fix 2: If you own a pool, keep the water’s pH level balanced, remove leaves and algae and make sure that the pool filtration system is adequate and working properly. Fix 3: Give your barbeque a thorough scrub to remove any built-up grease, make sure everything is in working order and replenish the gas bottle. Fix 4: When you're not paying attention, the first thing that tends to accumulate is cobwebs! Remove cobwebs from eaves, balustrades, doors, windows and plants. Fix 5: Invest in some furniture covers to keep your outdoor furniture clean and in good shape. Fix 6: Place citronella candles around your outdoor space to keep the bugs away in the warmer weather.