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3 Ideas To Jazz Up Your Deck For Spring And Summer

by Kuhrich on Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Those freezing winter evenings are gone — blown away by the first, soft whispers of spring. Celebrate by jazzing up your backyard deck in lieu of the coming summer festivities.

1. Add Built-In Seating

Nothing makes a deck more comfortable or brings simplicity to your backyard get-together like built-in deck seating. Whether your deck is big or small, ground-level or raised, adding wooden benches gives you room to entertain and pamper your guests.

Back your benches with lattice to add an element of southern charm, or use a timeless hardwood like mahogany to craft a bench to withstand the ages. Top your built-ins with a colorful assortment of water-proof throw pillows for added comfort and interest.

2. Bring In Flower Boxes

Use wooden flower boxes to hold colorful annuals such as nasturtium, marigold or leafy ferns to liven up your deck for summer. If you have the carpentry skills, craft built-in boxes from cedar or cypress — these are lightweight woods that are easy to handle and yet hold up well to the elements. As the seasons change, replace the annuals in your wooden flower boxes with spring and fall flower bulbs or small evergreens for winter.

3. Incorporate Lighting

Lighting is one of the most important, yet overlooked elements in backyard decor. Homeowners often never give outdoor lighting a thought until that first warm, moonless night in summer when the guests wander out onto the deck to find it’s too dark to mingle.

Avoid this scenario at your summer parties by providing inventive lighting in the form of decorative orbs, hidden rope lights, outdoor wall sconces or solar lighting. Add just enough light for guests to move around safely and not so much that you lose the feel of being outdoors.

4. Practice Aromatherapy

Sweeten the night air around your deck by planting highly-scented perennials such as honeysuckle or lemon balm. Lemon balm has the added appeal of helping to keep mosquitos at bay — always a plus for evening gatherings. Toss a few hickory or mesquite chips into the grill or fire pit to softly scent the night air as well, and add a few Citronella torches. The scent of this pungent bug deterrent is the true first harbinger of summer.

Nothing melts away those winter blues like the first warm summer evening spent outside on the deck. Make the most of yours by adding comfort, color, light and the companionship of good, dear friends.

+Ken Uhrich is lead Estimator and Purchaser at Custom Home Group, a Design/Build company, located in Lancaster County, PA. You can follow Ken on Twitter: @kuhrich Or visit his company website: www.customhomegroup.com