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With all the Spring Cleaning I have been doing inside, it is time to give the outside a little TLC. We have a saying here in the south, “Don’t plant your plants till you pay your taxes”. What that means is that it is usually safe to plant those outdoor pots and tender bedding plants after April 15th. It is our typical last freeze date. So until then, we can use this time to spruce up outside. I usually try to get these task done before or after the big pollen dump. Here in Alabama, we are in the middle of it right now so some of these tasks will have to wait until it is over or after a rain.
Each year I check my outdoor furniture for rust. I have a lot of wrought iron patio furniture and if it is not maintained it will rust and stain my pool deck. First, clean off any dirt or pollen with the hose. Using a steel brush, loosen and remove any rust flakes. Next, you are going to spray paint. You need to prep your area or you will make a HUGE mess. I use cardboard and/or dropcloths to place under my furniture pieces. My favorite paint to use is Rust-Oleum Universal Paint and Primer in Black. Rust-Oleum has some great oil rubbed bronze colors and well have hammered metals.
While you are at it, use the Rust-Oleum to touch up any wrought iron porch rails. Now you have a fresh look to your outdoor furniture and porch rails.
Clean Outdoor Windows
If you have lots of windows or very high windows, you may want to call in a professional. Locally, here in Birmingham, Al. I use Superior Cleaning Service. This is a locally owned and operated company I have been using for several years. Ask around and get recommendations, that is the best way to find someone. I have my windows professionally cleaned inside and out at least once a year. It is AMAZING the difference.
If you only have a few windows, you can do this yourself with a long-handled brush.
Here is a formula one of my friends swears by that will make your windows streak free
Cleaning Decks And Patios
I have been doing this on my own for years. It is hard, back-breaking work, so this year I called in the professionals at Superior Cleaning Service to pressure wash my pool deck, decks, and front stoop. What they did in a few hours it would have taken me a weekend plus. If you can afford it, I totally recommend you use a professional.
If that is not in your budget here is a great product to clean mold and algae from deck and patios, 30 Seconds Outdoor Cleaner from Lowes. You will need a pump sprayer and outdoor brush. This product contains a mold and mildew remove as well as bleach so wear old clothes and protect your hands.
Here is a video explaining how to clean your decks and patios using 30 Seconds Outdoor Cleaner
Now that your decks and patios are cleaned, mold, mildew, and algae free let us turn our attention to outdoor cushions.
Cleaning Outdoor Cushions
For many of you, who took up and stored your outdoor cushions this is a non-task. For me, I keep my cushions out during the winter because the weather here allows me to use the outdoor space year round. But the winter rains did a number on the cushions and I need to remove mold, mildew, algae, and dirt. Because I use my cushions year round, I only buy cushions with Sunbrella fabric. This is the only kind of fabric I have found that can handle to the sun and not fade.
Here is the recommended formula for cleaning Sunbrella fabric cushions
This was my weekend project. I actually used Tilex Mold and Mildew Cleaner with Clorox. First I sprayed the heavy algae and mold areas down with Tilex, let them sit, and using a soft bristle brush, I scrubbed the area with Dawn Dishing Washing Detergent and water. Finally, I rinsed the cushions and allowed them to dry in the sun. Now they are clean and fresh, ready for outdoor fun.
Final Touches- Add A Spring Wreath And New Front Door Mat
Finally, freshen up your front door with a Spring Wreath, this one I ordered online from Houzz.
Next, add a new front door mat to welcome your guest to your clean and fresh home. Target, Walmart all have wonderful front doormats. This is the mat I got online from Bed, Bath, And Beyond.
Now that my outdoor space has been spruced up for spring, I am going to use these next couple of weeks to make my outdoor planting plan and clean out my pots. I love spring, and I love working in my yard. Looking forward to enjoying my outdoor space.
Missed my Spring Cleaning Post?
You can catch up on my 4 part series here