I know we’re all dying to get out into our yards and gardens and get our hands dirty. I can’t stand looking at my pitiful looking ponytail palm or my sad hibiscus another day. But before we clip, trim, crop, design, or plant let’s remember what they say about March, in like a lion. It probably hasn’t roared yet.
So here are some things you can do to prep your patio and deck before you can get to the fun stuff. Your deck probably looks like mine; it needs staining or at least some touch up. The Home Depot has any kind of stain you need and lots of information on which to choose. We also have the brushes, tarps, sprayers and other accessories you’ll need to get the job done. I bought a brush that was about the same width as my deck boards so it saved me some time.
Today it rained and seeing the water pool on my deck boards did make the effort worthwhile. Another great alternative is composite decking. With composite decking you won’t have to stain every year. It really is worth it in my opinion.
It’s also time to touch up your patio furniture. Maybe your teak needs cleaning and staining, or your vinyl needs some soap and water. I have wrought iron furniture that I just love, but it was starting to look dingy and chalky. I was worried about finding a way to clean and revitalize it. I asked one of The Home Depot’s paint buyers about it, and he suggested Rust-oleum’s Universal spray paint.
Honestly, my furniture looks brand new!!!! I am so pleased with the result that I had to buy new cushions for the chairs and a new umbrella for the table in order to do justice to the gorgeous, new looking furniture. I chose the glossy finish, but I think the other finishes look great too. We have a breadth of colors so I was able to do my black wrought iron and my cheap and cheerful, orange metal side tables. I am thrilled with the result.
Finally, don’t forget to give some love to your patio surface. It may be mildewed, cracked, or stained. Depending on which type of surface you have you’ll need to clean and repair it at the very least. My patio is a polished cement slab. It has some cracks so I used Quikrete concrete repair products and have been happy with the result. It is honestly not a difficult or back-breaking job. And homedepot.com has a concrete calculator to tell you what you need for any concrete job and a whole library of job types and instructions. My patio looks so much better.
Once you’ve done this prep work you’ll be able to start thinking about planting. As our mothers said, “You have to eat your vegetables before you can have dessert.”