When you know how to make the most of your backyard, you’ll open the door to new opportunities for entertaining friends and family, just in time for summer. If you’ve been dreaming of hosting the event of the year, these tips will help get you there.
Groom your garden
Your trees, shrubs, and flowers set the backdrop for every event you stage in the backyard, so it’s important to keep them in good condition. The easiest way to do that is to opt for native plants, since these are naturally inclined to thrive in your specific weather and soil conditions, and tend to require minimal care. If low-maintenance is your style, you might also consider investing in perennial plants that will regenerate each season, or at the very least, opt for plants that won’t drop leaves or flowers so that you can skip the rake.
Look after your lawn
Your lawn performs a key function in backyard parties, inviting your guests to kick off their shoes and relax, so if you want to make a great impression, prepare to invest some of your time there. Grass can start to turn yellow if neglected, and although there are methods of reversal, it is important to consider the factors that can lead to discoloration. Dog owners are likely to find yellowing spots caused by urination, while the same effect can also result from a nutrient deficiency or overuse of fertilizer, so it might be time to take inventory of your lawn care practices before the invites are sent out.
Create opportunities for fun
A large backyard may be a luxury beyond the budget constraints of many homeowners, but you don’t need to install a tennis court in order to excite your guests. With a little imagination, you can turn your backyard into the main event for visitors of all ages. For a family of sports fans, a stash of balls is all you need for instant on-hand fun, but you could always turn it up a notch with a fancy new table tennis kit, a playground for the kids, or even oversized versions of your favorite games and puzzles. After all, nothing says fun like jumbo Jenga or Snakes & Ladders.
Light it up
The setting sun doesn’t have to spell the end of your night – that is, as long as you invest in good quality lighting. A soft ambiance is ideal for the outdoors, but don’t forget that your bulbs will also need to be bright enough to cut through the darkness. For those who love a multi-tasking gadget, consider a set of lights which double as a mosquito repellant, or emit heat to keep you warm during the night. These little extra features will make all the difference when summer arrives, and keep your backyard in high rotation.
Take a seat
Entertaining is all about creating an opportunity for your guests to relax and unwind, which is why you should make seating one of your top priorities. Uncomfortable plastic chairs are a bad investment, serving only to speed your guests towards the exit, so take the time to pick out the right pieces – that elusive combination of comfortable, weather-proof, and stylish will be worth the search. Better still, gather a collection of options and mix it up to add an extra touch of color to your backyard events.
Cater for all seasons
Changes in weather conditions are unavoidable, and being in the backyard can leave you exposed to less-than-ideal temperatures, but with a few simple investments, you can enjoy the different seasons for longer throughout the year. During the colder months, the addition of a fireplace or a cozy stack of blankets will keep your guests hanging around, whereas summer weather will seem far more manageable with a collection of fans, shaded spots, and maybe even a swimming pool. Not only will you discover a new side to the great outdoors, but you’ll also save on the costs of air conditioning.
For better or worse, modern life means constant exposure to technology, but there’s something special about being able to enjoy your favorite movies or TV shows in the comfort of your backyard. Even if outdoor viewing isn’t your thing, your guests will love little touches like an in-built sound system or a cluster of phone charging ports, perfect for an impromptu pool party. Nothing will bring your backyard into the 21st century quite like the right technology for the right occasion.
Entertaining outdoors comes with its fair share of challenges, but when you get it right, the pay-off makes everything well worthwhile. When all the upgrades are done, don’t forget to sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor – after all, that’s what backyards are for.