Take New Year’s Resolutions Outdoors

Picture 255We’re all making resolutions about what we want to be and do in 2016. So remember to include your own gardening/outdoor experience.  It’s not on our minds now, but when spring hits, it will be.

Whether we get our hands in the dirt, or not, our outdoor spaces are more than ever an important part of our lives.  They have become the next best place outside the family room where we gravitate to prepare and eat meals, entertain and unwind.

Now is the time to start thinking ahead about those outdoor spaces and what we want them to bring to our lives in just a few short months.  Resolve, pre-planning and some up-front effort will make it all come together when spring color returns to the landscape.


What is the garden you want to see, the outdoor space you want to create, the edibles you want to grow for the first time or the dreary corner you want to invigorate?   What did you resolve at the end of last season that you would NEVER do again? Answers to these questions will guide this year’s resolutions.

Create categories in your resolutions and next, a to-do list that includes the steps to make them  happen.  The range of items should include doing things that bring you inspiration and anticipation of what could be as well as the mundane and practical tasks that get work done.

Schedule tasks now so that you can get a head start on the growing season, for example:

  • Spread compost on top of gardening beds – especially the edibles garden.  You can pitch compost on top of the snow – not a problem.
  • Look online for a new gardening book – or read one still sitting on the shelf from last year.
  • Get gardening tools ready by cleaning and oiling shovels and other tools. Sand or replace wooden handles and sharpen tools.
  • If the mower wasn’t winterized by draining gasoline, etc., get that done.  Have it serviced and sharpen the blade long before the grass turns green.
  • Plan a trip to the garden center or hardware store to find ergonomic tools that make outdoor chores easier on your body.  There are a lot of cool possibilities!
  • If upgrades are in your plan, now is the time to meet with a designer to get your project in motion.
  • If you bring in outside lawn and garden help, confirm with your grounds and gardening services early so you know your needs are handled.
  • Check out seed and plant offerings online.  Ordering early insures you will have what you want when it’s time to plant.

The growing season is still months away – but now we can say it’s THIS year.  That tells us it really is just around the corner and it’s time to get ready. Bring on springtime!

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