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12 Outdoor DIY Projects to Try This Spring

March 11, 2020

12 Outdoor DIY Projects to Try This Spring

As winter winds down and warm weather returns, many homeowners start feeling creative and motivated to complete projects around the home. Doing DIY projects outside allows you to learn new skills and bond with the whole family. Plus, with so much DIY inspiration available online, you're sure to find a project that fits your budget and experience level.

Are you ready to transform your yard into the outdoor space you've always wanted? Here are 12 outdoor DIY projects to try this spring.

1. Create a Kid-Friendly Zone

If you have kids of your own or frequently entertain friends or family who do, an outdoor kid-friendly zone is the perfect DIY backyard project. It's also an excellent opportunity to let the kids get involved.

For example, you could build:

- A playhouse: Kids love having their own space to play in and decorate. Consider building either an on-the-ground playhouse or a treehouse in your yard. For a uniform look, paint the outside of the playhouse to match your home's exterior. Inside the playhouse, let your kids help you choose the furniture and paint. Don't forget to add fun lights and comfortable seating!

- A sandbox: Sandboxes encourage children to think critically and exercise their creativity. Building a sandbox in your backyard is surprisingly simple — just make sure you create a lid or cover to keep out animals or heavy rain when it's not being used.

- A swing set: If you don't have much time during the week to visit a playground with your kids, a DIY swing set in the backyard could be the perfect solution. You can build your own swings to attach, or you buy them pre-made to save some time.

2. Clean Your Post-Winter Yard

Spring cleaning isn't an indoors-only activity. Now that the weather is getting warmer, it's a great time to freshen up your outdoor space:

- Remove yard debris: Winter tends to leave behind a mess in the yard. To gear up for spring, remove scattered branches, litter, rocks, pinecones or other misplaced yard clutter. Rake all leaves or dead plants and use them to create a compost pile for your garden.

- Prune trees and bushes: Pruning and trimming your trees and bushes before the weather gets too warm is the best way to keep them feeling and looking their best. Pruning also encourages new growth. Remove all broken or diseased limbs and branches. If necessary, contact a professional to assist.

- Plant new flowers: There are many spring blooming flowers you could plant this season, including primrose, pansies, lilacs, daffodils, tulips, azaleas, and bleeding hearts.

- Repaint where needed: Winter weather can fade the paint on your siding, fence and outdoor furniture. Give everything a quick spring makeover by freshening up faded spots, or repainting a brand new color.

3. Create an Outdoor Entertaining Space

Whether sleek and modern or cozy and chic, your outdoor entertaining space is the ultimate way to showcase your personality and create a welcoming space for your guests to enjoy.

To create an outdoor entertaining space, consider the following:

- Lounge area: The key to a great lounge area is comfortable seating and plenty of eye-catching décor. For seating, you can invest in or upcycle old patio furniture, paint a picnic table or build a bench from wooden palettes and cinder blocks. You can decorate according to a theme — like a tropical paradise or bright and eclectic — or you can choose pieces that mirror the style of your home. Don't forget to add a few tables and shade umbrellas for outdoor dining.

- Yard games: Yard games are fun for both kids and adults. Boost the fun of any outdoor party by building your own yard games, like lawn checkers, cornhole, horseshoes and oversized Jenga. You could also choose an eco-friendly spray paint to create a hopscotch or yard Twister game for your kid's next birthday party.

- Lighting: The right lighting can take your outdoor atmosphere from basic and boring to beautiful and enchanting. Twist string lights around tree trunks and through the branches decorate tables and surfaces with outdoor lanterns and flameless candles or drape bistro-style lighting above your outdoor dining area. You can also use themed lighting, like Tiki torches, hanging glass jar lights or paper luminaries.

- Outdoor bar: Make unwinding easier than ever when you build a DIY bar out of palettes or recycled wood. Create your own cooler out of crates or galvanized tubs and fill them with ice to keep drinks cool throughout the evening.

4. Install a Fence Around Your House

There are several reasons you might want to add a fence to your home. Fences offer a lot of privacy and can help block out noise from nearby neighbors or traffic. Fences can keep children and pets safe and away from the road. They can also protect vegetable or flower gardens from being stepped on. Some homeowners install fences because they add interest and curb appeal.

Whatever the reason, a DIY fence is a good project to take on this spring. If you already have a fence and want to spruce it up, consider a fresh paint job. You can choose a neutral or bold solid, or get creative with a hand-painted mural or pattern.

5. Build Raised Garden Beds

Raised beds can keep your flower, vegetable or herb garden safe from animals, excess moisture and accidental trampling. In addition to the protective barrier they provide, raised garden beds also offer:

- More growing options: If you live in an area with poor soil, or soil that contains a lot of clay or high levels of alkaline, raised garden beds provide a separate space to nurture existing soil, or use potting soil for more growing options. If you live on a small lot without much expendable space, a raised garden bed is a way to grow your own produce without taking up too much room.

- Easier maintenance: Because the beds are often smaller and raised off of the ground, they are easier to maintain and less physically demanding than traditional gardens.

- Material conservation: When you concentrate your growing efforts in one small area, you minimize your chance of wasting water, fertilizer, and compost.

6. Build an Outdoor Firepit

Fire pits can stand on their own, or you can add one to your existing entertaining space. Either way, they make the ideal focal point for your yard.

Before you begin a DIY fire pit project, keep these tips in mind:

- Construct your fire pit out of non-flammable material, such as stone or brick.

- Always check local regulations before building a fire pit — some cities and HOAs do not permit open burning.

- Do not place your fire pit near hanging branches, dry grass or in parts of your yard that get a lot of wind.

- Line your fire pit with a steel ring to help keep flames contained.

- Add a removable grill grate to the top for trying delicious fire pit recipes — and don't forget the marshmallow roasting sticks!

7. Upgrade Your Walkways

Spring is a great time to refresh the walkways around your home because it is warm enough to work without complications from snow and ice, but it's not too hot to take on day-long projects.

To upgrade your walkways, try one of these projects:

- Repair and clean: If your sidewalk has any cracks, gaps or chips, take the time to patch and repair it. Afterward, pressure wash your sidewalks, so they look clean and new.

- Replace: Tired of your concrete sidewalk and looking for something with more personality? Give your walkway a makeover with large stones, pebbles, gravel, mosaic tile, colored bricks or even planks of wood for a boardwalk effect.

- Add lighting: Lit pathways can help you see when you're walking at night, and they create a unique visual effect. There are many different walkway lighting options, including solar lights, hanging lanterns, ground-level rope lights and more. Just be sure whichever lights you choose to install are rated safe for outdoor use.

- Do some landscaping: Plant flowers or bushes or lay mulch along both edges of your sidewalk to give your home a clean, well-maintained appearance.

8. Build an Outdoor Kitchen

Building an outdoor kitchen is for homeowners who enjoy tackling a challenging DIY spring outdoor project. You can use an outdoor kitchen for weeknight dinners, family reunions, birthday parties or to take your warm-weather grilling to the next level. Your outdoor kitchen can be integrated into an existing porch or deck, or you can build it as a standalone structure.

As you search for the right design plan for your kitchen, consider how much counter space you need and how many sinks you want. Your outdoor kitchen will likely house your grill, but you can also build in a smoker, stone pizza oven and under-counter refrigeration.

9. Repurpose Old Items

Decorating your home and yard can be as simple as repurposing old items, such as:

- Tin cans: Tin cans make excellent planters, votives, and outdoor storage containers. You can even paint an old tin can and use it as your silverware or condiment holder at your outdoor bar or kitchen.

- Tires: Instead of tossing worn tires, repurpose them. Tire swings are one front yard staple that never goes out of style. Or, you can paint your tire a fun color and use it as a unique planter in your garden.

- Furniture: Old dressers, nightstands, and wooden chairs can be upcycled into planters or bee houses.

- Glass jars: Repurposed glass jars have become trendy in recent years, largely due to their versatility. Use glass jars as glassware at your outdoor bar, like candle holders or as small planters.

- Palettes: Wooden shipping palettes are another popular repurposing item because they can be transformed into almost anything, including outdoor furniture, fencing, storage walls, planters, and sandboxes.

10. Build a Pergola

Pergolas add shade and privacy to your yard and can act as a natural focal point for guests or potential homebuyers. Many home improvement stores have DIY pergola kits, but you can also build one from scratch if you've got the right supplies. Most pergolas are made out of wood, but you can make yours out of whatever material is best suited to your taste and lifestyle.

For example, if you don't have a lot of spare time to spend on outdoor maintenance, a vinyl or metal pergola may be a better option for you, rather than a genuine wooden one that might require some upkeep. Once you've built your pergola, make it your own with hanging vines, flowers, string lights or decorative banners.

11. Create a Bird Sanctuary

Take advantage of all of the season's sights and sounds by creating a bird sanctuary in your yard this spring. Bird sanctuaries attract several species of birds and hummingbirds that you might not usually get to see, and they give birds a safe place to rest and refuel.

For a thriving bird sanctuary, here's what you need:

- Food: DIY bird feeders are an excellent way to offer your local birds a treat. In addition to bird seed, you can fill your bird feeders with fruit, oats, cracked corn, sugar water or sunflower seeds. Also consider planting bird-friendly flowers and berries, like holly and red mulberry. Experiment with different foods and feeding techniques to see which interesting bird species you can attract.

- Water: Birds need water to drink and bathe. Build a birdbath out of painted terracotta flower pots or galvanized steel basins. Fill with crisp, clean water — just don't forget to clean out your birdbath regularly to prevent build-up. If you want to provide fresh water through the winter, consider investing in a water heater designed for outdoor use.

- Shelter: Building a birdhouse is one of the most family-friendly spring DIY projects because it's simple and a lot of fun. You can build your birdhouse out of almost anything, and there is no limit to the shape, size or design. You can make hanging houses, tall houses on poles or birdhouses that you nail to the fence or side of your house. If you are creating a large bird sanctuary, scatter a variety of birdhouses around, so there's plenty of room.

Once you finish your bird sanctuary, add a bench nearby, so you can sit and watch your hard work pay off.

12. Make a Pet Playground

Pet playgrounds provide your pet with a place to play and exercise while you're working on other outdoor DIY projects. They are also the ideal place to teach your pet new commands or work on training together.

- Turn your backyard into a pet-friendly paradise for your four-legged family members by adding the following:

- Sand or dirt-digging areas so your dog or cat can exercise their natural digging instincts without putting holes in your yard.

- Training tunnels and agility courses to teach your pet new tricks and commands.

- A kiddie pool full of cool water for hot days.

- A refueling station so your pet can snack and rehydrate while they play.

- A dog house or shaded area so your pet can take a break out of the sun if necessary.

- A box of your pet's favorite weather-safe toys, including balls, ropes, and sticks.

Find Your Perfect Home With an SK Builders Floor Plan

Whether you're a growing family looking for more space or a first-time buyer looking for the perfect starter home, SK Builders has a floor plan for you. With our simplified process and diverse selection of floor plans, building the home of your dreams has never been easier. Here's how it works:

- Visit our website and choose whether you want to build a home in one of our existing communities, or on your own lot.

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Once you've made your decision, contact one of our experienced agents to learn more about your floor plan and schedule the next steps. You can also feel free to reach out with any questions or visit our FAQ page to learn more.