Summer is the ideal time to host a barbeque, especially with plenty of friends and family to join you. In fact, you can get away with it for much of the year as long as it’s not raining. People may blame the weather for not having a BBQ regularly, but often they’re hiding a secret – garden shame. It doesn’t have to be a nightmare preparing your garden for an outdoor party, though. In fact, just a few easy steps should get you completely ready to host the BBQ of the summer!

1) Tame the lawn

If your garden consists mainly of grass then you’re perfectly suited to a BBQ party. You just need to get it under control so it’s comfortable for people to walk around on – wading through knee-height vegetation to get to the food isn’t ideal, plus in the summer you can expect insect bites all round. Cutting the grass neatly can make an incredible difference, and probably only takes about half an hour maximum for a large lawn.

2) Fix up paintwork

Fences, gates, decking, seating and even your garden shed probably need a new coat of paint every few years at least. If the paint is looking a little tired, this doesn’t even have to take long to get sorted. Pick out a brand new colour and freshen up your garden furnishings with bright colours if you feel you need an extra bit of excitement in the garden.

Garden flowers3) Add colourful flowers

If your garden is looking a little too green and brown at this point, you can really liven it up with some fresh and colourful flowers. No need to go round digging holes for them – it might be fun to grow your own flowers, but we’re assuming you haven’t got time to do that before firing up the grill this evening. Hanging baskets are the perfect solution, or planters (you can use almost anything to make these) dotted around the patio.

4) Maximise your space

Use all your garden furniture wisely, and think about the layout if you’re having more than a few people over for your BBQ. You need to make sure everyone has a place to sit, and can access the food easily. If you’re preparing a buffet to go with your grilled food, you’ll need to lay it out on an appropriate table. Bringing your indoor furniture outside is always a little risky and inconvenient, so it’s better to invest in some cheap outdoor tables and dress them up nicely.