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Easy ways to fixer-up; Your yard has problems; we have solutions. How to get your outdoor space in better shape for a bright summer

Spring is all about feeling refreshed and re-energized. For many, it's also about being reminded of the nagging problems outdoors.

It could be a landscaping dilemma. A lack of privacy or space. Or even a question of where -- and how -- to begin.

Big problems often require big budgets and professional crews. Little problems, a little legwork and a free weekend. Then there are all those projects in between ...

Whatever the case, this could be the year to get things done. We have pinpointed just a few problems many people share when they step outside.

Unsightly views from the back porch. Tired-looking patio furniture. Backyards with too little privacy. Garages with too much stuff.

In the following pages, you'll read some solutions.

Keep in mind that you are not alone. Local nurseries, greenhouses and home improvement stores are gearing up for the season and have trained employees ready to share expertise.

The third annual National Garden Festival runs June 23-July 29, with local garden tours, talks and more to inspire and educate you. And the Friday Home & Style section of The Buffalo News simply loves spring and summer.

Kind weather has kick-started the season. Take some time to enjoy it -- then get to work.

email: smartin@buffnews.com