Hopefully by the time you read this article, the monsoon winds and rains will be fading into the sunset, and we can once again enjoy the drier weather and cooler temperatures we moved here for.

With that comes a desire to make sure our yards and patios are in tip top shape and ready for the “entertaining season”. You know that time of year when friends and neighbors are returning from their summer getaway and looking forward to connecting once again.

How ready are you? Is your furniture looking a little weather-beaten? The grill not cleaned since the Fourth of July? If you are lucky enough to have a pool, is it crystal clear and welcoming? How’s the pavers, flagstone or brick under foot looking? Has your yard suffered from those Monsoon beatings?

These are all things that can be taken care of quite easily with the right help and a vision of calming serenity. In SaddleBrooke, we are fortunate to have many qualified workers who can steam clean your patios, make that grill shine, refurbish your patio furniture, and trim those shrubs and trees to give them new life.

There are also products out there for those who prefer to roll up their sleeves and put some elbow grease into the project. One product I use and swear by is 303. It can be purchased at local patio furniture stores or online at Amazon. I use it on all my metal furniture as well as our sunscreens. It contains an ultimate sun blocking technology and renews your faded items in a short time with little effort. It totally eliminates the accumulated dust from my screens and lets the light come in.

In some cases, I have learned it is more cost effective to replace your worn patio furniture as replacement cushions have hit the ceiling and to date cost more than a new set. Who would’ve thought?

While we don’t have to worry about our landscape living in the Villas, we do have some nice pots with plantings that are very manageable and bring a splash of color to our patio and front areas. Metal flowers have become a huge trend in SaddleBrooke and for snowbirds, are an ideal substitute for the real thing when you are away from home. Just make sure you keep them in good shape and touch up that paint when they begin to fade. With proper maintenance, they can last for years.

Cacti and succulents are a fabulous low care plant, and many require little pruning or watering. Something you may want to consider the next time you are ready for a change. Two of my favorites are the Slipper Plant and Candelilla. Of course, for cacti, I love the Golden Barrel. Just make sure you deadhead them to keep them colorful and healthy. When the flowers turn dark brown, you can easily remove them with a pair of pliers. This growth is called cotton and is quite unsightly if not removed. They can eventually take over the cacti and ruin its appearance.

Others to consider are Claret, Organ Pipe, Snow Owl, Hedgehog, and many others. Bachs Nursery is a wonderful place to explore the many varieties as well as Mesquite Valley Growers and Green Things.

Whatever it takes to make you happy, plan a theme and go for it!!

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