5 ways to prepare your garden for a party

·3-min read
garden party prep
5 tips for garden party prepMaskot - Getty Images

Sunnier days are around the corner (we promise!), and you may be looking forward to celebrating with a garden party. Not much is better than inviting your friends and family around for a soiree under the stars on a warm summer's evening. However, getting your garden ready for the occasion may seem like a big task, especially if you didn't give it much TLC over the winter.

Be sure to check these five jobs off your list and your garden will be guest-ready in no time.

1. Love your lawn

Giving the lawn a quick trim is the quickest way to smarten up your outdoor space. If you're in the market for a new mower, the cordless Gtech Cordless Lawnmower 2.0 scored well in the GHI's most recent tests, with testers finding that it was particularly effective at cutting different heights of grass.

If you really want to impress, choose a mower with a built-in roller for that bowling green, perfect-striped effect. This is created by bending and flattening the grass slightly in opposite directions, so light catches differently on the blades.

garden party prep
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The secret to achieving enviable lines is to use something straight, such as a fence, as a visual guide. Ensure that the first stripe runs parallel to this, then line up each subsequent one with the edge of the one before.

Turn the mower around 180 degrees and mow in the opposite direction after you complete each stripe. As you mow, focus on a point around 3m ahead of you to help you steer in a straight line.

2. Look out for the edges

To complete the look, smarten up lawn edges and borders using a grass trimmer, such as the Stihl FSA 56 Set or the Husqvarna 115iL Grass Trimmer.

No time to invest in gadgetry before you welcome guests? Use garden shears, hedge clippers or even a sharp pair of scissors to trim the most visible borders (probably those nearest the patio) by hand. The rest can wait.

garden party prep
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3. Take on the grime

Use a pressure washer to clean the patio and hose down garden furniture that has gathered cobwebs, dust and grime over the winter. The Mac Allister MPWP130FTP Medium Duty Pressure Washer is our top scorer.

Failing that, use water, a drop of washing-up liquid and a stiff-bristled brush - along with a dose of elbow grease - to smarten up the patio, or wipe down garden furniture with a damp, soft cloth.

4. Make it shine!

While you have the pressure washer out, it's worth giving the patio or bi-fold doors a clean, too. Take care not to overlook the door surround or sills, where dirt often accumulates.

Follow-up by adding extra sparkle to glass panes. For a professional finish, use an exterior window cleaner such as Squeegee Off. Dilute in water following the instructions and apply to glass panes using a soft cloth. Use a squeegee, such as the Unger 10in Stainless Steel Streak Free Glass Squeegee, to remove excess liquid.

Alternatively, wash panes with a solution of distilled white vinegar and water, then polish with a fine microfibre cloth for a streak-free finish.

garden party prep
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5. Give the barbecue the once-over

Check your barbecue is ready for action. If you have a charcoal barbecue, scoop out any long-forgotten ashes and dispose of them. Remove the grate and leave it to soak in warm, soapy water, or tackle tougher cooking residue with a specialist cleaner, such as Weber Barbeque Grate Cleaner. Scrub with a wire barbecue brush, metal scourer or a ball of scrunched up kitchen foil.

Now just add some sun, good company, delicious food and a glass of something refreshing and you're all ready for a lovely time!

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