Spring has had a slow start this year, but with the longer days we are finally seeing the greening of our lawns. Depending on your hardiness zone, the tasks you are trying to complete can range from cleaning up your beds to planting your garden. For those in urban areas you may have already had your spring bulbs emerge and may be working on cleaning up your patio furniture and fertilizing your yard. If you need some sage advice or are looking for outdoor plans start with Hoopla and Overdrive:
- The Organic Lawn Care Manual by Paul Tukey - "Create a gorgeous lawn that is free of harsh chemicals. This comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know to grow and maintain a thriving lawn using organic gardening methods. With expert advice on planting the best grass varieties, nourishing the soil, watering, fighting weeds, and sustainable maintenance, Paul Tukey helps you create a luscious and inviting lawn that is pesticide-free and safe for your children and pets."
- Lawn Gone! by Pam Penick - "A colorful guide covering the basics of replacing a traditional lawn with a wide variety of easy-care, no-mow, drought-tolerant, money-saving options that will appeal to today's busy, eco-conscious homeowner. Americans pour 300 million gallons of gas and 1 billion hours every year into mowing their lawns, not to mention 70 million pounds of pesticides and $40 billion for lawn upkeep. No Wonder the anti-lawn movement is thriving, as today's eco-conscious consumers realize that their traditional lawns are water-hogging, chemical-ridden, maintenance-intensive burdens. Lawn Gone!, from award-winning gardening blogger Pam Penick, is the first basic introduction to low-water, easy-care lawn alternatives for beginning gardeners, written in a friendly style with an approachable package."
- Beautiful No-Mow Yards by Evelyn Hadden - “A compelling rationale for ignoring the siren song of the ‘perfect’ lawn, and step-by-step instructions for creating easy-care, planet-friendly patches of paradise.” —Fine Gardening In Beautiful No-Mow Yards, Evelyn Hadden offers the ultimate guide to rethinking your lawn-dominated yard. With inspiring color photos and cutting-edge advice about how to work with nature, Hadden offers a diverse set of alternatives to demanding green turf. Beautiful No-Mow Yards includes detailed profiles for 100 of the best ground-layer plants, design tips to reduce maintenance, and guidelines for making smaller and smarter lawns."
- Small Engines and Outdoor Power Equipment by Peter Hunn - "A practical, hands-on guide for repairing and maintaining small gas engines and the things they power: lawnmowers, snowblowers, chain saws, power washers, generators, portable lawn care equipment, and more."
Looking for landscaping ideas ?
- Landscaping for Privacy by Marty Wingate – “The area around your home is your haven, your sanctuary, your refuge from the noise and irritation of traffic, eyesores, and nosy neighbors. Or at least it could be if there was some sort of barrier between your front yard and the sidewalk, or if you didn't have to stare at the back of the neighbors' garage when you want to relax on your patio. Landscaping for Privacy brims with creative ideas for minimizing or even eliminating the nuisances that intrude on your personal outdoor space.”
- Landscaping with Stone by Pat Sagui – “The first section of the book provides readers with a framework for incorporating stone in their landscape designs, including a look at the different types of stone used in landscapes, sources of inspiration, and ways to think about stone in relation to other landscape elements. The second part provides readers with tips on working with stone, from transporting to cutting and setting. There is also step-by-step instruction on some of the most popular stone projects, including patios, walls, and rock gardens.”
Got the building bug?
- The Backyard Homestead Book of Building Projects by Spike Carlsen -- “Gardeners, small farmers, and outdoor living enthusiasts will love this compilation of 76 rustic DIY projects. From plant supports and clotheslines to a chicken coop, a greenhouse, and a root cellar with storage bins, most of the projects are suitable for complete novices, and all use just basic tools and easy-to-find materials.”
- She Sheds Style by Erika Kottie - "Once you're charged with inspiration, explore loads of DIY projects and ideas from some of the most creative she shed owners around the world. A variety of front entrance ideas provide inspiration for welcoming guests to your space. Ideas for re-purposing furniture abound, such as transforming an old door into a drop-down potting bench. You can even extend your shed's impact beyond the walls with garden features like stepping stones and string lights. Most projects are shown with detailed, step-by-step photos so you can see exactly how the work is done."
Hopefully, spring emerges from hibernation soon, so that you can soon enjoy your outdoor space, big or small.