It's the most wonderful time of the year, and no we're not talking about Christmas! We’re talking about summer! Summer is the perfect time for a party any day of the week. Be your own host and throw a great outdoor BBQ, pool party or cocktail night. Whatever your plans may be, we’ve got a few simple tips to help you be an awesome host this summer.
1. Grow summer herbs in advance
Hosting a garden party doesn't necessarily mean spending hours in the kitchen preparing elaborate food dishes — it just means making sure there are plenty of tasty snacks on hand for guests who want something light. One of the easiest ways to liven up your summer food is by making them using fresh, homegrown herbs. With the Click & Grow summer bundle, you can grow fresh basil, mint and cilantro with ease. Use them in pestos, salads, as toppings, as garnishes and in a whole range of other dishes. The possibilities are endless.
2. Greet your guests with a drink
One of the easiest ways to make your guests feel welcome is with a drink. You don't have to go all out and have a bartender on hand; instead, try making a simple cocktail using homegrown herbs as garnishes. You could use basil, rosemary or thyme in place of lemon wedges or orange slices in drinks like gin and tonics or mojitos. Not only do these herbs add flavor to your drinks, but they also make them look stunning.
3. Set up dining spaces in the shade
Dining spaces in the shade are essential for a garden party. The heat of the sun can be unbearable, especially if you're hosting an outdoor event with a lot of people. If you're not sure where to put your dining tables, consider these options:
Under trees - If you have big trees in your yard, they're great places to set up tables. It's nice to dine under the shade of a tree while enjoying nature at the same time.
On patios - Patios are popular choices for hosting garden parties because they allow guests to walk around and enjoy themselves without feeling like they're being trapped inside.
Under umbrellas - You can always buy an umbrella from any home improvement store and set it up in your yard for shade during your garden party. This is a great option if you don't have much space outside but still want some protection from the sun's rays during mealtime.
4. Plan for bugs and rain
Plan ahead, and you'll be able to keep your party rolling no matter what Mother Nature throws at you. The most common pest at summer parties is mosquitoes — but don't let them ruin your event! Put out bug spray stations around the party area so guests can take care of themselves or their kids before heading inside again. You can also try citronella candles or incense to keep bugs away from the food table or seating areas.
Rain is a different story because it doesn't threaten your health like bugs do, but it can ruin your party plans! Make sure guests have umbrellas and consider having a backup location if it rains while you're hosting (ie. a covered porch or garage).
5. Choose a variety of seating options
Your guests will be sitting around for a few hours, so make sure you choose a variety of seating options in advance. Look for sturdy chairs that aren't too deep or wide and have backs. This way, your guests will be comfortable throughout the event. Be sure to include seating options for those who might have trouble getting up and down from the floor, such as elderly family members or people with disabilities. If you don't have enough chairs for everyone, consider renting some from a local party store or using folding chairs instead of benches.
Don’t forget about kids who may be coming along too. Children love playing outdoors and this is something that should never be ignored when hosting a garden party. Therefore, create a special area where they can play or just sit back and relax while watching other people having fun at your garden party event. This will allow them to have fun while parents have peace of mind knowing they’re safe and not getting up to anything dangerous!
6. Make sure you've got plenty of sunscreen on hand
Put out some sunscreen in a convenient place where people can easily find it, and make sure everyone knows they need to apply sunscreen before heading out into the sun. If you've got younger kids at your party, make sure you have child-friendly sunscreen available for them as well!
If possible, choose an outdoor area that has some trees nearby — not just for shade, but also because trees provide natural protection from the sun's rays.
As the saying goes, it’s better to give than to receive. Hosting a garden party is always appreciated. So go ahead and host a summer party for your friends, neighbors and colleagues. Give them a chance to have fun in a very unique place that will get everyone feeling too relaxed and comfortable to leave. While you’re at it, why not show them your smart garden too? It may inspire them to start enjoying the pleasures of homegrown food for themselves! Finally, from all of us at Click & Grow, we hope you have a lovely, relaxing summer.