Why wait for Spring when you have MARch?

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There is nothing more exciting than watching the snow melt away to uncover the early signs of rebirth, renewal, and regrowth. Any good gardener will tell you that it's all about planning. Much like the fashion industry, you're always one season ahead. So, here are my sMARt tips to jumpstart your spring season.

  • Visit garden shops and home and garden accessory stores. Inquire about the previous season's birdbaths, birdhouses, trellises, tuteurs and other garden items or tools that they may have hidden in the storeroom. Play "let's make a deal." Typically they are more than willing to offload last year's inventory at a good price.
  • Find a teak furniture distributor. Teak is the perfect addition to any garden, as it weathers beautifully and requires absolutely no maintenance. Although pricey during the spring and summer, winter is a great time to negotiate. Teak offers visual interest in all four seasons. Function, beauty and highly durable, teak is well worth the investment. Start with two armchairs or a bench and strategically place them in a corner of your garden. Build your collection from there. 
Never buy the complete set of outdoor furniture. Choose a linking element—such as color or texture—and mix items from different manufacturers. Mix teak with iron and other outdoor materials for that one of a kind look and feel, and create cohesion with accessories like pillows and throws.
  • Get inspired! Visit your local library—it's free—and discover the huge collection of gardening books, which will stimulate you to create, extend or redesign a garden area. 
  • Coordinate fencing, painting and/or any other repairs or projects before the crazy spring and summer rush.  Being proactive provides you with better service, pricing, and attention—not to mention you'll be ahead of everyone else.
  • Don’t be afraid to explore online or catalogs for inspiration. Local showrooms can’t show all sizes, colors, and combinations of items, so don’t be limited. Get exactly the right items for your space before inventory sell out.