- Kitchen & Home
9 preparation tips to add to your summer BBQ checklist
1. Sort the entertainment
Plan your playlist to suit the mood – maybe a mix of summer classics and current favourites. Water-resistant wireless speakers make it simple to move the party to the garden. Just remember to be considerate of your neighbours.
2. Plan for the weather
You never know with the British weather, so think about whether you'll need some shade or shelter. Dig out that garden parasol, or, if you've got the space, a gazebo. If you're going to use the house if it starts pouring, make sure you have some emergency chairs on standby.
3. Plan your food
There's so much choice when deciding on a menu – from a good old fashioned BBQ to a Middle Eastern mezze. Also think about washing up. Are you going for paper plates or will your dishwasher be able to cope?
4. Get your lawn in shape
Give your garden an instant lift by giving it a mow and trimming the edges. Use a mower with a collection bag to avoid mess. Make it easy by using a power motor, and choose one that’s the right size for your lawn.
Old mower been gathering dust in the shed? Find a new mower or strimmer
5. Spruce up your patio
Moss and grime can make patios and decking look tired. Avoid spending the sunny days scrubbing with a pressure washer that can do the work for you. Move furniture and pots, sweep to remove debris, and shift stubborn dirt easily with the washer.
6. Add a splash of colour with plants
If you love outdoor entertaining, plant some night-scented flowers like phlox, honeysuckle and jasmine. A few herbs near where you put the barbeque can help add some last-minute flavor; they can even be added to your cocktails for a tasty twist
7. Give your outdoor furniture a clean
Even if your tables, chairs and sun-loungers have been stored in the shed over the winter, it's probably a good idea to check them over. Clean them far enough in advance so they have the chance to dry off.
8. Take a look at your hedges and fencing
If you've got dogs or small children, check there are no escape routes. Mend fences and paint them if they need brightening up. Check if your hedges need a trim, as they could turn your garden into a jungle.
9. Check outdoor lighting
You'll want some mood lighting, but make sure any fairy lights are suitable for outdoor use and candles are safe. If you need new garden lighting, consider a dual-purpose light that gives you the illumination for entertaining but can also act as a security tool - perfect if you plan to go away later in the year anyway.
With just a little thought, your garden will provide the perfect Instagrammable background for that perfect summer afternoon or evening with friends and family.
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