Outdoor Maintenance Calendar: Which Tasks To Do and When

Making the most of your home by creating your very own outdoor haven in which you can relax and unwind is the ultimate homeowner goal. However, for many of us, the levels of maintenance required to keep exterior areas in tip-top shape can be quite daunting. If you’re already the proud owner of a garden with patio (or are thinking of creating one in the near future but just don’t know how keep it in shape) then you’re in the right place as we’ve created this here Outdoor Maintenance Calendar that shows you exactly which jobs you need to do and when…

January

  • Protect tender plants from frost and cover flowerbeds and borders with shredded bark or mulch.
  • Brush snow from conifers and evergreens to prevent branches from bowing and snapping under the weight.
  • Feed new plants with slow release fertiliser.
  • Encourage wildlife to visit your garden by topping up bird feeders.
  • Clean mossy/slippery paving or slab tiles using a suitable detergent such as Fila Deterdek and a jet washer.

February

  • Prune deciduous hedges and shrubs and clear detritus from borders and beds.
  • Deadhead winter bedding plants (this will ensure better blooms later in the year!)
  • Rake gravel coverings and remove mulched leaves from pathways, decking, tiled areas.
  • Cut back ornamental grasses to around 15-20cm to encourage new shoots.
  • If the ground is not frozen or waterlogged, plant bare-root trees/shrubs and prepare seed beds for planting vegetables in Spring.

March

  • Continue with the pruning but concentrate on things such as rose bushes , blue mist spirea and barberry.
  • Weed beds and borders and protect perennials by laying slug pellets.
  • Prevent weeds from returning by replacing mulch and shredded bark.
  • If it’s not waterlogged, now is the time to start mowing the lawn (set the mower blade height as high as it will go for the first 5 weeks).
  • Repot plants that you may have sitting on hard surfaces such as pathways and verandas
  • If you have an outdoor kitchen area, give it a superficial clean to prevent build-up of organic material.

April

  • Plant now or forever hold your peace! April is prime planting season so get planting up young plants and summer baskets.
  • Sow bedding plants into seed trays in readiness for transferring in the summer.
  • Repot plants into larger pots of planters and position in protected positions until summer.
  • Repair and repaint garden furniture and fences (weather permitting).
  • Carry out essential maintenance on paths and paving to prevent further frost damage.
  • Treat flower beds and lawns with organic pesticides to avoid problems later on in summer

May

  • Treat flower beds and lawns with organic pesticides to avoid problems later on in summer
  • Clear out guttering, drainpipes and drainage grids to remove leaves and moss.
  • Protect plants and flowers against insects (use nematodes for an environmentally friendly solution)
  • Wash down bi-fold doors, conservatory tiles, glazing and roofs, and patio doors.
  • Fertilise and mow your lawn – it’ll will need mowing each week from now until the autumn.

June

  • Remove dirt, oil and greae from slab tiles using Fila PS87 Stain Remover.
  • Ensure the barbecue is in full working order and stock up on gas/charcoal.
  • Feed container plants regularly – liquid feed tubs and hanging baskets every two weeks.
  • Weed, water and feed EVERYTHING!
  • Move summer flowering housplants out onto the patio to encourage them to bloom.

July

  • Oil garage doors and exterior facing hinges on doors/gates.
  • Reseal any outdoor slate tiles you may have using Fila MP90 Sealer.
  • Keep on top of weeding (beds, lawns, baskets) and deadhead plants to encourage flower growth.
  • Hydrate lawns, plants, tubs and leafy vegetables often (water the lawn in the evenings to avoid scorching the grass).
  • Paint outbuildings, walls, sheds, fences, pergolas and arbours whilst the weather is nice!

August

  • Make sure you secure (with twine or similar) all late summer perennials to stop them drooping and snapping.
  • Maintain your watering schedule but only water during dry spells (especially in the case of lawns)
  • Mow the lawn at least once a week but raise the height of the blades to prevent brown patches.
  • Replace washers in exterior taps if needed.
  • Prune trees and shrubs (but don’t cut into older brown wood).

September

  • Get any water features ready for winter by covering ponds and fountains with netting to prevent leaf build-up and water logging.
  • Ensure roofs and doors of outbuildings are free from leaks and superficial damage i.e. rot ahead of the temperatures dropping and damp conditions arriving.
  • Mow the lawn for the last few times, making sure you keep the length a little longer.
  • Move tender plants and houseplants set outside for summer back indoors.
  • Tidy borders and shrubberies one last time before winter.

October

  • Repatriate any plants/veg that have been brought out for summer back to the greenhouse.
  • Check that any greenhouse heaters are in full working order.
  • Cover the barbecue and protect any outdoor furniture from the elements.
  • Sweep any remaining debris from slab tiles or paving to avoid it turning to mulch in wet conditions.
  • Save any leaves to make leaf mould in readiness for use during soil conditioning in October.

November

  • Now is the time to plant up tubs and baskets – use evergreen perennials to bring some colour to what is generally a drab season.
  • Maintain lawns – if you want to grow from turf then lay it now on a day when the top soil is not frozen or waterlogged.
  • Protect container plants in non-frost-proof pots by wrapping them in bubblewrap.
  • Drain and store hoses and wrap insulation around outdoor taps and pipes 
  • Invest in some rock-salt for defrosting driveways, paving and outdoor slab tiles during wintry days.

December

  • Revisit bird feeders to ensure they’re free from damage and fully topped up.
  • Water plants, shrubs, beds and tubs sparingly – make sure that container plant soil doesn’t dry out completely.
  • Inspect guttering and drainpipes regularly for damage (wind and frost being the main culprits).
  • Ensure any wood collected for use with woodburners is kept covered and dry.
  • Relax and start planning next summer’s exterior building project!

Hopefully that lot has eased your mind and made it that little bit easier to plan your garden and outdoor area maintenance schedule, meaning you will have more time to enjoy your outside spaces. If you haven’t got an outside area to enjoy and are looking to get in on the alfresco action then do take a look at our Portico range of 20mm thick outdoor slab tiles – they’re just the ticket for patios, verandas, paths and even driveways. The Garden & Outdoor section of our super-handy Help Centre is also packed full of helpful hints and tips to do with creating exterior areas, so point your browser that a way!

You might also enjoy these posts on the Tile Mountain blog…

Indian Summer: Outdoor Styling That Will See You Through Until Next Year

Which Adhesive & Grout To Use With Outdoor Tiles

How To Create an Outdoor Cinema to Watch The Big Match

Here at Tile Mountain, we not only have a huge range of tiles to suit every purpose, we also have a wealth of tiling knowledge gained from over 30 years in the tile industry, (which we’ll do or best to share with you across these very pages).

Whether you’re looking for the perfect tiles for your next home improvement project, are searching for some style inspiration, or simply need a bit of help and advice, you’re in the right place.