As the weather starts to warm up, you are likely itching to get outside and start all of those spring garden tasks that keep you busy until its time to plant. But before you can begin trimming bushes, adding compost to your soil, and planting seeds, you’ll want to make sure that you embrace the spring cleaning fervor outside as well as inside your home. Preparing your garden shed and tools now will help you stay organized and make each of your precious garden days count.
Take everything out
Though it may seem like a daunting task, especially if you have a lot of stuff in your shed or garage, taking everything out is the best way that you can bring your tools in the light to inspect them and figure out what you need to buy for the upcoming season. It also allows you to clean shelving and sweep the floor to get rid of all of those winter cobwebs.
Instead of just taking out all of your dusty tools, soil bags, and pots and putting them right back into your shed in a slightly organized manner, use this opportunity to wipe down the shelves, sweep the floor, and clean any other surfaces. If your shed hasn’t been cleaned in a while, it may be a good idea to wear a dust mask and safety goggles to avoid getting dirt in your eyes, mouth, and nose. Should you be lucky enough to have a few windows in your garden shed, wipe down the inside with glass cleaner and use a garden hose to spray down the outside and windowsill.
While it’s true that some tools may simply be past their prime and need to be retired from duty, others could last a few more seasons with a little care and TLC. Make any repairs that you can to your tools, and grease and sharpen clipper blades to keep them ready for action. When everything is out of your shed, you should also search the ground for any loose floorboards or holes and inspect the walls for any dangerous nails or other hazards. If you want to add any hooks, shelves, or other organizational tools, add them now.
Keep an eye out for pests
During the winter months, rats, mice, and other rodents and insects will sometime take up residency in your quiet, warm shed. If you find evidence of any of these unwanted guests, be sure to thoroughly clean and disinfect the area and leave traps out to ensure that they won’t be coming back.
Get rid of stuff
Let’s face facts; no one needs three old shovels taking up valuable space in their garden shed. In fact, you’ll likely never touch those shovels again, especially with your new, ergonomic, comfort grip shovel staring you in the face. While there may not be anything strictly “wrong” with these tools, there’s no sense in hanging onto something you aren’t going to use. Donate them, give them to a friend, or throw them out if they’re in poor condition.
Now for the fun part. Once your tools and shed are clean and shiny, put everything back in an organized manner. Group your tools together so that they’re easy to find and use buckets and shelves to store your smaller items that could easily get lost. Get creative and use chalkboards or painted boards to make labels for things to ensure that they’ll always end up back in the right place. Make your shed a space you enjoy spending time in so that it isn’t a nightmare to go into when you need to collect your tools.
Assess the paint job
Take a good long look at the outside of your shed to determine if it needs a new coat of paint or touchups. If your paint is in really bad shape and the whole thing needs to be redone, try painting it a new color to freshen things up and spice up your backyard. Otherwise, match a sample to your existing paint color and cover up those unsightly spots. Be sure to do this on a warm, sunny day when there is no rain in the forecast. Keep in mind; if you are repainting the whole thing, you may need to do a few coats.