Having a yard that is free of pests and insects is not only beneficial to the cleanliness and safety of your home, but can also make spending time outdoors alone or with your family far more enjoyable. You can find a few activities below that will inspire you and your family to make the most of a pest free backyard this summer and that will encourage quality time spent away from the indoors.
1. Build Your Own Garden
One of the best and most rewarding ways to spend time in your pest free yard this summer is by building a beautiful flower, herb or vegetable garden. Whichever type of garden you prefer to plant, the absence of bugs and pests will not only be beneficial to the plants you are growing, but can also help to make the gardening experience more enjoyable for you.
How To Plant Your Own Personal Herb Garden
Herb gardens are a great option for the gardener who prefers low maintenance plants and wants to use the fruits of their labor to add delicious flavors to meals they prepare. Herb gardens are easy to grow, requiring only sunshine, well draining soil, water and some fertilizer or compost. Although there is literature which suggests that growing your herbs in pots is the best way to go, these plants prefer to be planted straight into the ground where they can stretch their roots as they grow. Growing your herbs in pots also means that they will require more water than if planted directly into the ground soil and can even restrict their growth, as some herbs can grow up to six feet.
The location of your herb garden is one of the most important factors to consider when beginning your herb gardening journey. The majority of herbs will require full sun for optimal growth, so long as the summer temperatures in your area do not exceed ninety degrees. If you live in a location that experiences particularly hot summers, it is best to plant your garden in an area of your yard which receives morning sun and shade in the afternoon.
To prepare the soil for your herb garden, loosen the soil with a large garden fork. This will help to create space for the roots of your herbs and also allows water to drain properly. Next, add compost approximately one inch on top of the soil and then mix the soil and compost together. Doing this adds fertilizer to your garden and works to stop any issues with drainage. Now comes the fun part! Choose and plant your herbs and begin to foster them into adulthood with regular watering and frequent check ins. It is important to inspect the soil often and to avoid over watering your herbs, as this can lead to plant disease and insufficient growth.
The Best Vegetables To Grow In Your Summer Garden
If you would prefer to grow your own vegetable garden in your pest free yard this summer, there are a few different types of vegetables that will fare well during this time of year. Beans, eggplants, tomatoes, corn, carrots, cucumbers, peppers, pumpkins and squashes are all great for a summer garden. These vegetables will grow throughout the summer and will be ready for harvest by the fall. With your yard free of pests, you do not have to stress about bugs and insects destroying your crops. Having a pest free yard also means you can happily spend hours tending to your garden without the annoying buzzing and biting of summer bugs.
Which Flowers Are Best To Grow During The Summer
With more time spent outdoors during the summer months, it is the perfect opportunity to beautify your yard with stunning ornamental plants that will add color and vibrancy to your garden. Like garden vegetables, some particular types of flowers will grow best in the summer, making it an easy task to adorn your yard with their colorful petals. If you are planning to grow flowers in the summer, choose flowers such as marigolds, black-eyed susan, aster, lantana, blanket flowers, verbena, zinnia, hibiscus, globe amaranth or purple coneflower. Each of these flower types will give your yard the upgrade it deserves, while giving important pollinators a chance to pollinate your yard. You might also choose to plant chrysanthemums, as these flowers are a great defender against destructive garden bugs and insects.
2. Host A Summer Barbecue
While gardening in your yard is a great way to spend some quality time alone, you can also take advantage of your pest free yard by spending time with family and friends during a fun filled summer barbecue. Read below for two tips on how you can throw the best barbecue of the year right at home in your pest free backyard.
Tip 1: Decide When and Who
Generally speaking, it will be most convenient for you and your guests to attend a barbecue on Friday, Saturday or Sunday during the day or in the late evening. Hosting your barbecue throughout a larger block of time gives your guests the freedom to take care of any prior weekend obligations, while also being able to swing by your barbecue for some good food and summer fun. For larger barbecue parties, consider sending an invite through e-mail to each person on your guest list and for smaller parties, a simple call or text message will suffice.
Tip 2: Choose What Food and Drinks Will Be Served
When throwing any type of dinner or lunch party, it is important to consider the potential diets of each of your guests. For example, a meat only menu will alienate vegetarians, or serving only cheeseburgers as opposed to regular hamburgers could keep those who are lactose intolerant from enjoying the food. It is always a good idea to have a wide variety of food options, including meat and vegetarian menu items, when putting together your barbecue menu. Hamburgers, veggie burgers, hotdogs, chicken skewers and veggie skewers will usually cover a wide range of diets ensuring that no one is left out of your delicious barbecue feast. Chips, dips and a veggie platter are great for appetizer options. Do not forget the drinks! Plan for your guests to have three drinks each. You will also need napkins, plates, cups and cutlery for your guests to use with their meal. If you are hosting your barbecue during the day, do not forget to apply your sunscreen!
3. Camp Out In Your Backyard
Throwing a backyard campout without the bother of insects and other pests is a great way to enjoy the summer months with your children right in your own backyard! There are a few different ways that you can throw the best backyard campout ever and you can find some of these ways below.
Tip 1: Set Up A Tent
When camping out in your backyard with your family, treat your new campsite as if you are really out in the woods and enjoying the beauty of nature. First, find a smooth and flat area in your backyard to pitch your tent. Have each of your family members help out so that you can all enjoy the satisfaction of contributing to your at home campaign experience. Once your tent is set up, you can make it extra comfortable by placing fluffy blankets, yoga mats or sleeping bags along the floor. You can also opt for an inflatable mattress for a fancier backyard camping experience!
If you do not have a tent, you can improvise by stringing a rope between two trees and hanging a large blanket or tarp over the top. If you do go this route, make sure you lay a waterproof tarp on the ground under the tent along with piles of comfortable and cushy blanket and pillows. This will give you a cozy, dry place to fall asleep. You can even make your experience a little more magical by stringing lights or hanging lanterns around your tent or yard. This might also help to make your children feel more comfortable and safe in the dark of the night.
Tip 2: Whip Up Some Yummy Camping Treats
Once you have a plan for your tent, you can then decide which delicious snacks you and your family will enjoy during your backyard camping experience. If you have a barbecue grill or fire pit in your backyard, you can take the classic route of grilling up some hamburgers and hotdogs and making s’mores. If you will be camping without a grill or fire pit, you can always pack up some sandwiches, trail mix, cookies and juice boxes which will still make your experience feel authentic.
Tip 3: Play Fun Games
Perhaps the most exciting part of your pest free backyard camping experience will be the fun games you can play with your family! When it comes to backyard games, you have a wide range of options to choose from including stargazing, nature hunts, campfire stories and classic games. For a fun star-gazing experience, simply lay down a large blanket and some pillows in your yard and keep your eyes on the sky. You can even search for constellations and shooting stars! For a fun filled nature hunt, search your backyard for different types of plants and bring a pen and paper to record all of the cool plants you find. Classic games including Simon Says and tag are also a good way to have fun while you camp in your backyard.
Tip 4: Stay Outside
With your backyard free of pesky bugs and insects, you and your family can comfortably spend extended periods of time in your yard. Make your at home campaign experience even more authentic by preparing all aspects of your campout ahead of time to avoid having to go back into your house after your campout has begun. Leave your electronics inside and only venture indoors for emergencies or bathroom breaks!
4. Set Up An Outdoor Movie Screen
Who says movies have to be enjoyed indoors or in a movie theater? When you create your own outdoor movie screen to be used in your backyard, you and your family can enjoy all of your favorite movies from the comfort of your own backyard and in the beauty of nature!
To make your own outdoor movie screen, you will need a large white sheet, a projector that can be hooked up to your smartphone and of course, a smartphone. Simply secure your sheet to your fence or hang it over a clothesline and secure it with clothespins and rocks at the bottom to keep it from blowing in the wind. Then, hook up your projector to your smart phone, point the projector at your white sheet and stream your favorite movie! You can also enhance your experience by laying down sleeping bags or large blankets and pillows to enjoy your movie in maximum comfort. Do not forget the snacks! Pop some popcorn and bring your favorite candy to emulate a true to life movie theater experience.
5. Throw A Pool Party With a Temporary Swimming Pool
Even if you do not already have a swimming pool in your backyard, you can still enjoy a pool party at home! All you will need is an inflatable, temporary pool, a water hose, the sun and of course some sunscreen! You can purchase inflatable pools of all sizes from a variety of retailers to easily enjoy some fun in the sun in your pest free backyard.
The above activities are jus a few ideas you can use to jumpstart your family’s summer and to take full advantage of a backyard that is free of pests and insects. You can add your own twist on any of these activities or come up with your own! The most important part is that you and your family are able to venture outdoors to enjoy quality time together without having to worry about bug bites and invading pests. Happy summer!