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Outdoor Living
Shed some light: Outdoor storage becomes a snap with Rubbermaid's Roughneck® shed.

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Outdoors Solutions
Outdoor Living
"Preparation" is the answer to the call of the Great Outdoors

As any green thumb knows, good preparation is the key to successful gardening and yard maintenance. Doing your groundwork now will help you yield fabulous results down the road. Here are some helpful hints for getting your yard and garden ready this early spring.

1. Prep your tools

  • Clean your hand tools including shovels, spades and rakes.
  • Clean and sharpen cutting tools like clippers and bypass pruners.
  • Clean, grease, and if needed, have professional maintenance done to any lawn mowers: manual, electric, gas-powered, and ride-on.

2. Get all the "fixings" ready

  • Avoid disappointment down the road by buying early-spring essentials now, not on that first warm weekend.
  • Load up on compost, manure, soil mixes (potting soil, triple mix, etc), grass seed, plant and lawn food, etc.

3. Store wisely

  • Store grass seed, bird food and any other potential rodent attractors inside a lidded storage container.
  • Store soils and soil additives like compost and manure in large storage containers, to avoid the mess of open bags, and to aid in mixing up custom soil blends.

4. Build a permanent home for yard and garden supplies

  • Keep newly serviced yard, lawn and garden equipment in tip-top shape by protecting them from the elements and keeping them organized in one place.
  • Place and keep soil mixes, composts and other gardening essentials together in one dry place.
  • Consider installing a storage building from the Roughneck® family. They're all leak-proof, dent-proof, crack-proof, lockable and easy to assemble. Storage capacity ranges from the 17 cu-ft. of the Roughneck® X-Small Storage Shed to the 325 cu-ft. Roughneck® X-Large Storage Shed, which can house a ride-on tractor mower, among other storage items.

5. Plan for safety

  • Keep fertilizers, pesticides, sharp garden tools, and other potentially dangerous items under lock and key.
  • Lock them inside a Roughneck® Storage Shed.
  • Or, in an existing potting shed or garage, stash them within a lockable storage cabinet.

6. Condition your soil

  • Vegetable gardens: Once your soil is dry enough—make a ball of it in your hand, and if it crumbles when you poke it, it's ready—spread a layer of organic compost and till it into the soil.
  • Flower beds: Work some organic compost or well-rotted manure into the soil.
  • Add mulch around trees and shrubs.

7. Plan ahead for "green" gardening

  • Cut your use of treated municipal water by recycling rainwater. Buy a rain barrel and place it under your downspout to collect rainwater. Use this water to fill your watering can. (Place a screen over top to prevent mosquitoes from laying eggs.)
  • Make your own backyard composter by drilling aeration and drainage holes into the top and bottom of a large container. Add yard clippings and vegetable and fruit kitchen scraps, turning regularly.

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