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Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Spring Clean-up Time

With opening day out of the way and the baseball season under way, it's time to turn you r attention to what winter did to your yard and house. It's spring clean-up time. OK, so maybe I'm jumping the gun here a bit, but with the snow finally gone (again) and warmer weather coming and going, you can at least get started on weekends that it doesn't rain.

Winter normally leaves all sorts of debris in the yard - downed limbs from trees, left over leaves from last fall and more (some courtesy of inconsiderate passers-by who find it convenient to share their left over pop bottle or McDonald's Happy Meal boxes and wrappers. Then there are the remains of last years plants, by now beaten down by winter storms. All-in-all it can look like quite a mess.

So a good beginning, especially if your house is on the market, is to patrol the yard and pick up all of the winter debris. Then look at any large plants, especially those close to the house, to see if any were damaaged by ice during the winter and need trimming attention.

The second item on the spring list should be to look at your gutters and downspouts. Winter has a way of filling and stopping up guters and downspouts somehow seem to always fall off or lose the bottom parts in the winter. Clean the gutters and repair the downspouts.

You can identify also the areas that might need touch-up painting, although you may have to wait another month until the weather is warm enough for that. If you haven't taken down your Christmas decorations yet, now would be a good time to start. If you took them down but haven't stored them yet, take care of that.

If you used a lot of salt on the drive or walk and it's still there, you may want to hook up a hose and wash it off. Spring rains woud eventually do that, but if you are showing the house it's best to go ahead and get that done.

We're still a good month away from it being safe to plant you flowers for the year, but you can spruce up the yard and and house, to recover from the ravages of winter. And it's not to early to put down your crab grass pre-emergent treatment, even if it may snow again.

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