Enjoy Your Deck Beyond the Summer Months

Decks and patios should be more than a summer space. With a little maintenance, creativity and planning you can create an outside area to enjoy throughout the seasons.


cleaning your deckThe summer season can be drying for natural wood decks. Now’s the time to take care of any maintenance before the rainy season arrives. Check to see if any repairs are needed, such as split boards, nail heads, etc. After repairing, clean and wash your deck thoroughly and re-seal or stain if needed. Water-based products can offer easier cleanup and less odor while oil-based products tend to penetrate deeper and last longer.

If you have a composite deck, follow the manufacturer’s instructions on cleaning. If a deck-wash is recommended, be sure to rinse thoroughly so no residue is left behind.

Concrete patios need care too! Thoroughly clean the surface with mild dish soap and water. If stained, check you local home improvement store for concrete cleaning product recommendations. Once the surface is clean consider applying the protection of a colored or clear concrete sealer.

Replace and Refresh

potted plantsRenew your outdoor space for the cooler months by changing out accessories and plants. With fall settling in and winter just ahead, table umbrellas can be put away and replaced with colorful arrangements of pumpkins and gourds. Replace summer annuals with hearty seasonal blooms. Some good choices are flowering cabbage and kale, ornamental grasses, pansies and chrysanthemums. Add decorative pots with shrubs like English holly, boxwood and dwarf evergreens to carry into the frosty winter season.

Create an Inviting Space

firepit on a deckFirepits and firebowls are a nice focal point for gathering and warmth. Replace weathered or faded cushions with fresh, bold seasonal colors. The right cushions can make the difference in comfort as well as beauty. Use colorful outdoor rugs and weatherproof pillows to bring the indoors out. Keep a basket or container with cozy blankets handy when entertaining.

If you don’t have the space for a firepit, portable gas heaters come in many sizes, including tabletop. In smaller spaces, try creating a conversation area with flameless candles and lanterns. Add strings of electric or battery-powered lights for interest and sparkle. Think colorful and cozy. A smaller deck or patio can be the most inviting and easiest to maintain and update. Once you’ve created your comfortable outdoor space, fill your favorite mug, grab a cozy blanket, and enjoy the beautiful colors and fresh air.

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