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How to Protect Your Landscaping During Exterior Painting Projects

calander Apr 8 , 2021 user-icon Nash Painting

Painting your home’s exterior is a great way to revitalize its appearance and protect its surfaces. However, your property’s outward appearance consists of more than just your house -- your lawn, shrubs, trees, garden, and potted plant life also greatly contribute to the overall curb appeal of your home. And now that spring has finally arrived, it’s only a matter of time until those dormant plants bloom once more and enhance your exterior’s overall atmosphere. If the main point of both residential exterior painting and landscaping is to boost your home’s outward appearance, then you don’t want either process to interfere with the other. Unfortunately, some of your green spaces will inherently be in harm’s way during exterior painting, which is why it’s key to be proactive during these projects.

Here’s our advice for protecting your landscape before, during, and after exterior painting projects.

How to Prepare Your Landscape for a Paint Job

Plan Ahead of Time

There are many things you can do to protect your landscape well before the painting process commences. If you’re hiring professionals, make sure they’re well aware of your exterior layout and your particular landscaping needs from the very beginning. This way, your painters will be somewhat familiar with your place on the day of painting, minimizing the risk of accidents. To prepare your exterior and landscape for the job, you should clear away any and all moveable landscape components, too -- these include things like potted plants and other non-fixed decorative features. If possible, try to have nearby trees and shrubs pruned/trimmed before painting as well. Pruning and trimming are important tasks in their own right since they help control the growth and health of your trees and shrubs, but doing so also removes potential hazards that might affect the painting process itself and/or scrape against your house exterior. Lastly, depending on the time of year you invest in exterior painting, you might be able to tackle this project before your landscape comes back to life in full force (i.e. dormant). Timing your project in this way will mitigate the potential harm that might befall your landscape as well as the hazards that might get in the way.

Cover Up Those Plants and Shrubs

While interior and exterior paint projects are different in some respects, they’re similar in many ways. For instance, when painting a room, you don’t want paint to drip or spill onto any surface other than one you’re painting, which is why it’s so important to lay down drop cloths and cover up fixtures before getting started. Well, the same principle applies to exterior painting projects. Just as you don’t want interior paint to land on certain surfaces, you don’t want your exterior house paint to fall on your lawn, shrubs, and/or garden. Should paint end up where it doesn’t belong, it might end up killing or ruining components of your landscape -- you can remove paint from floors and countertops, but you won’t have much luck getting it off of flowers. To prevent these undesirable outcomes, then cover up your nearby, vulnerable landscape features with tarps, bags, or similar sturdy materials. Make sure these coverings are secure so they won’t fly away yet loose enough to allow your plant life to breathe.

Water Your Plants Before Painting

Exterior paint jobs range in duration based on the property’s size, number of coats, and size of the team. That said, even smaller projects can take some time -- time that might be precious for your plants that need sunlight and water to thrive. Indeed, keeping your flowers and shrubs covered for extended periods of time can dry them out, especially during scorching hot days. To keep your plants healthy and happy during the painting process, then, properly water them and the surrounding soil before covering them up. Be sure to not go overboard with watering, though, as this can harm your plants and weaken the soil, which may present a hazard for those painting on ladders.

Don’t Let Ladders Stomp the Scenery

While we’re on the topic of ladders, keep in mind that these useful tools can do a number on your landscape if you’re not careful. Most ladders aren’t extremely heavy on their own, but they get pressed down by human weight when in use, which in turn can compress soil and crush or suffocate green spaces underneath. Moving a ladder from one location to another can also tear apart portions of landscaping. In order to keep your landscape safe around ladders, make sure ladders are carefully and properly moved from area to area, lifted, and never dragged across the ground. Additionally, sturdy wooden squares can be placed underneath each ladder leg before use for increased stability and reduced pointed pressure on soil, much, or gravel.

Practice Care When Power Washing Siding

A clean, bare exterior is more receptive to new coats of paint, and pressure washing provides the most powerful and efficient method of exterior cleaning. If you decide to pressure wash your home, you must be careful not to damage its surfaces and/or the surrounding landscape. Hiring professional pressure washing services is the way to go unless you’re well-versed in this process. Experienced pros will know how to angle the nozzle, which pressure setting(s) and solution(s) to use, how to avoid contacting your green spaces, and more. Missing the mark on any of these accounts can cause you to tear through your grass, take out tree branches, destroy plants and portions of shrubs, etc.

Mind the Materials You Use

Protecting your landscaping during exterior painting projects isn’t just a matter of reducing the risk of impact and dripping paint -- it’s also about ensuring the ongoing health of your green spaces after the paint has dried. Even if you succeed in keeping paint from coming into direct contact with your shrubs, grass, and garden, keep in mind that the fumes given off by certain paint chemicals can harm your landscape, especially shortly after the project is complete. For maximum protection, try using plant-safe exterior paint products whenever possible, such as milk paints and other non-VOC (volatile organic compound) paint options. The fewer toxic chemicals you use before, during, and after your exterior painting project, the better off your landscape will be.

Spring is the prime season for both exterior painting and landscaping improvements, especially in temperate regions like Nashville, Brentwood, and Franklin, TN. Let the experts at Nash Painting help you preserve your plant life while improving your property’s appearance. Our painting processes are thorough, sustainable, and customer-focused. To learn more about us, our hassle free painting services, and our values, call us at 615-829-6858 today!