Transform an unfinished, lackluster yard into a barbecue-master's dream, complete with a landscaped and refurbished spa area.
Tile and Stucco the Barbecue Area
To complete the unfinished barbecue-bar, the first task is to trim and level the concrete foundation. To do this, use a grinder to smooth out uneven spots and imperfections in the concrete surface. Then, begin the stucco base all around the patio. Once finished, lay the new tile on the countertops. Always make certain you pre-fit the tiles to plan the layout. For a multilevel bar, lay tiles on the lower levels first, and work upward. In the same manner, first cement in the tiles around the perimeter, then work from the center outward. Always use a wet saw when cutting a lot of tile and double-check the fit before placing. Also use strips of tape to hold the tiles while the mortar sets. Last, finish the tile with grout. Mix the grout powder and water. Hold the grout float at a 45-degree angle as you spread it over the tiles.
Install the New Grill
To begin, measure your dimensions for the new grill and create a back support with 2x4's. Work around your empty spaces, saving installation for the end. Once ready, put the refrigerator in place, and slip in the service access door. Next, use an adjustable wrench to reconnect the gas line as you slide on the new grill.
Paint the Hot Tub
Begin by sanding the old paint off of the hot tub and surrounding steps. [Tip: Always sand wood surfaces before painting!] Separate the removable parts of the spa to paint (steps, etc.), and use a variety of paintbrushes to accommodate each piece. After allowing the fresh coat of paint to dry, hose down the spa before reconnecting.
Add New Landscaping
For a fresh landscape, outline the plant-bed areas with spray paint. Then, remove the existing sod and prepare the soil for new plants and trees. Plant your selection of trees, shrubs and flowers. After placing new landscaping, fill in with organic soil. Try to organize the landscaping with the balance and unity of the entire yard in mind. New flowerbeds will add color and drama to the yard. Also, use mulch — it holds moisture and provides a great finished look.
Spruce up the Existing Yard
First, remove the dead grass and sod from between walkway stones. Also remove the sod from around the hot tub or yard fixture where you plan to renovate. Moss is excellent ground cover around stone paths, requiring very little maintenance. Plant a combination of Irish and Scottish moss between the flagstones by tearing the moss into pieces, placing them, and then filling in with organic top soil. Use an aerator-spreader to aerate the lawn and allow oxygen and nutrients to feed the roots — you can also fertilize as you go. Trim the existing trees and plants for a neat and clean appearance.