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Gardens and flower beds add beauty and personality to a home. And for people whose homes are for sale, presenting gardens in the best possible light during the spring is vital.

One of the things prospective buyers do when visiting a home is imagine themselves living there. Tending to a scenic flower garden, or thriving vegetable garden, is going to draw the attention of many buyers.

The first step to making a garden look appealing is to create a nice home for the plants. Clear out leaves and other debris that have accumulated over the winter. Rake the soil and create neat and orderly flower beds. Clean any pots, containers and decorations that are in the garden. One of the most effective steps is to spruce up the garden’s mulch. Laying down a new layer of mulch adds a rich, healthy-looking brown that will create a terrific contrast with your flowers.

Spring is when the temperature gets warmer, but nights can be cool. Plant flowers for early spring that thrive in cooler weather. These include pansies, dianthus and petunias. These flowers have vibrant colors, making them visually appealing.

More and more people are eating healthy and organic goods, and that trend can be a big advantage if you tend an organic vegetable garden. Be sure to plant vegetables that grow in the early part of spring—peas, Swiss chard and spring lettuce are excellent options. If you’ve yielded crops, prepare a snack using ingredients from your garden to give visitors a taste of what life in your home can be like.

Decorative items like gnomes, signs and outdoor figures can bring a little fun into your garden. You can buy custom-made decorations online, or more affordable options from big box stores. Another idea is to label your plants and vegetables. Many seed companies provide markers that help gardeners know where everything is planted, but you also can buy decorative markers that can be reused every year. If you have a talent for arts and crafts, make your own.

Now that you’ve made your garden more beautiful than ever, it’s time to look at the features that surround it. If those aren’t appealing, they’ll detract from your flowers and vegetables. Trim trees and shrubbery in your yard. If a gate surrounds your garden, make sure it’s sturdy and the latch on the gate’s door is effective. If there is a water feature near your garden—a fountain or bird bath, for example—make sure the water in it is clean and clear.

A little effort can help make your garden a selling point.

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