WANTAGH, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Spring has sprung, and summer is right around the corner.

With fluctuating temperatures — soaring and then retreating — it’s important to prepare homes and gardens for the new season.

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“We are excited for some nice weather. We are hoping to get some trees to spruce up the front of our house,” Liz Haines said.

Karen Musgrave from Hicks Nurseries has all the answers.

“Now, is a great time to plant trees and shrubs,” she said.

Roots will take off now that the ground has thawed.

“Now is when you can prepare, the soil, turning the soil over, adding some nutrients,” Musgrave told CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan.

Rake flower beds, and mow lawns. Annuals should be planted by Mother’s Day.

“Walk your garden, look around the whole entire yard, pick up any sticks, any debris that might have accumulated over the winter time, and then put down a good two inches of mulch in all of your garden beds,” she said.

Be on the lookout for ants, termites, camel crickets, and wood boring beetles — those pests can wreak havoc.

Termites and other nuisance insects lay eggs in the spring, and thrive in warm weather. Cockroaches, and camel crickets cluster around pipes, stoves, sinks, sewers, and downspouts.

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“Once you find them in big numbers you will start seeing some fecal matter in those moisture areas,” Henry Yane said.

Get rid of damp leaves under decks, move wood piles away from foundations, caulk window wells, dehumidify basements, and check last year’s air conditioners in windows and walls.

“You want to open up and check the filter,” Joseph Ruggiero, PC Richard And Son, explained.

Ruggiero said filter replacements can be cut to size.

“This is where the cold air blows. If you try to wash this where the cold air comes out, it will wind up freezing the unit,” he said.

Should that happen, it’s time for a new AC.

Portable air conditioners need to be vented, and a safety appliance is suggested in case of a summer power surge.

“This will protect your air conditioner and service box from any damage,” Ruggiero said.

Experts also suggested checking roof shingles, gutters, outside faucets, storm drains, and chimneys for winter damage.


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