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As the weather gradually warms up, most people long to be outside. Summer is a great time to enjoy your yard space, to host evening dinner parties on your patio, and to perfect your outdoor grilling skills. It is also an opportune time to work on some home improvement projects. Here are some ideas to get your home and garden ready for summer entertaining and relaxing. Some of these undertakings are fun and creative, while others are practical must-haves. For more summer project ideas, head over to your San Jose hardware store and garden center—the experts there can provide you with guidance or inspiration.

Simple Backyard Decks
Decks can be costly and complicated to make, not to mention frustrating when you involve your city’s building department. Simple decks, however, are rather easy to construct if you have basic carpentry skills and are willing to do the work yourself. Plus, if they stay low to the ground, simple decks do not require a building permit.

Paved Paths
Need to define the walkways in your garden? Use pea gravel, flagstone, bricks, or pavers to create a beautiful and functional path. This project is something you can knock out in a weekend.

Unexpected Planters
Need a container in which to plant your annuals or herbs? Consider adding a whimsical or unusual element to your garden by creating a planter from something unexpected like an old claw-foot bathtub, a rusty Radio Flyer wagon, colorful galoshes, an electric mixer, a vintage typewriter, or a suitcase.

Potting Benches
Potting benches are highly useful workstations if you love gardening, providing appropriate spaces for your potting and repotting needs. You can build a potting bench from whatever materials you desire. Blueprints are available online for simple designs. When in doubt, consult a professional at your local garden center.

Sitting Walls
Mark off planting beds or patio borders by creating a sitting wall, which is basically a short retaining wall, in your garden. Construction wall blocks and bricks come in a variety of styles, colors, and materials to suit your design and aesthetic needs.

Fire Pits
Outdoor fire pits are a great place to gather around when the sun goes down and the temperature cools. Construct a fire pit using stone, concrete, or any other material suitable for containing and withstanding fires. Your design can be as simple or as intricate as you desire.

outdoor grill

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