Imagine strolling down a quiet street on a hot summer evening in a desirable Ottawa neighbourhood. In fact, try to imagine the neighbourhood that you want to live in. You see families walking their dogs and children playing in their front yards. The birds are chirping and the evening sunlight provides a beautiful backdrop on all of the different homes on the street. Suddenly you are encompassed with the sweet smell of roses and you look over to a big beautiful garden accompanied by fluffy well-kept shrubs, mature, lush trees and a meandering interlock pathway that leads through the garden to the front porch of the home. The porch includes a swinging sofa, a wicker furniture seat with colourful, comfy cushions, and a lady having her evening tea and reading her favourite book. For a moment, you feel lost in this wonderful outdoor oasis (I know I do anyway!) and think hmm, how can I have this?
There are many easy ways to transform your outdoor space into a trendy outdoor summer haven. With these easy tips, you can add thousands of dollars to your home’s value, not to mention a great space to enjoy with friends, family or even in solitude.
Be sure to keep your grass at a reasonable length, mowing every 1-2 weeks, depending on how much rain has fallen. If your lawn looks yellow and dried out after you've mowed it, you probably have the blade on your mower set too low. The general rule is to mow your lawn when the grass grows to about 3 inches. Fertilizing your lawn will help keep it healthy and green. If you are unsure on which fertilizer to use, ask the experts at your neighbourhood garden centre. Slow-release fertilizers are great because you can go six to eight weeks, before fertilizing rather than every four weeks.
Zombie attacks may not be so great for your yard, but plants really are! With pops of colour and lush green plants, your yard can be livened up with just a small amount of work involved. Planters add a great focal point to your yard or deck and can be a low-maintenance way to enjoy a garden without all of the fuss. If you do have a green thumb and a little more time and money to spend, a well thought out garden with stones or a retaining wall can make your home look absolutely fabulous! Small shrubs and trees along the garden or property line will class up your yard and even provide a nice shady area to hang a hammock or sit underneath.
If you do want to explore the idea of a more formal garden, try adding a little mulch to the area around your plants. Adding mulch will suppress weeds, slow moisture evaporation as well as break down and enrich the soil underneath. This can be a great time-saving measure to take because you don’t have to water or weed as much and, in theory, you won’t have any pest problems. Mulch can be great for both your flower or vegetable garden.
If you’re anything like me, you enjoy being outdoors way more than indoors during the warm summers. If your home doesn’t currently have any sort of deck / patio / porch / verandah, then perhaps it is time to invest in one. Adding some sort of deck variation to your home will increase the property’s curb appeal which in turn brings in more buyers when selling. Who doesn’t want some sort of outdoor space to decorate with outdoor furniture, flowers and lights? I know I do! If you are interested in building a deck for your home, check out our great article “Deck style inspiration for your backyard renovations” which delves into which deck best suits your family needs.
Adding outdoor lights to your home and yard can create a real “wow factor”. Have you ever seen those night shots of luxury homes that jump out at you? Those same photos with no outdoor lights would not have the same effect. Installing pot lights or wall mounted lights to the exterior of your home will certainly light up your life as well as boost the curb appeal of your home. Lighting up a pathway or garden feature is a great way to add focal points. Be careful with solar lights as in some cases they can end up looking a little tacky. LED light bulbs are a great energy efficient way to illuminate your exterior.
Now that you have these tips on making your yard great, I would love to see photos of what you have created, or what you may already have! Post your best yard photos on Facebook and Instagram using the hashtag #OttawaOutdoors. Remember to tag @SusanandMoeTeam so we don’t miss your post!
For more great tips on how to get the most resale value out of your home, or for tips on selling or buying, give us a call at 613-457-5000 we would love to hear from you!