We are well into the autumn season, and as the days get a little shorter and cooler, thoughts of landscaping and lawn care seem a little further off than they did in the middle of summer.
For the best looking landscape when spring arrives, homeowners must take care of a few maintenance items now, before it gets too cold. Whether working with a professional landscaper from a local landscaping company, or doing it yourself, these simple tasks will prepare lawns and home landscapes for the colder season ahead.
Fall Lawn Seeding and Overseeding
Expert landscapers suggest the best time for overseeding lawns that are thin, or re-seeding bald patches and new lawns is when the weather cools down, but before it gets too cold.
It is still warm enough for grass to grow mature roots that will last through the winter, without the problem of excessive heat damaging fragile grass plants as they grow.
Thin lawns should be over-seeded after dethatching and aerating. New grass will grow by ensuring seeds and soil get enough water to stay moist throughout the end of the season.
Late Season Fertilization and Weeding
Professional landscaping companies assert that fertilizing in the fall, especially when over-seeding or planting new grass, is a great way to help lawns grow deeper, healthier roots for the winter. An early fall treatment that is higher in nitrogen will feed existing plant growth, and help keep lawns green for a longer time.
A late fall treatment that is higher in phosphorous strengthens roots and encourages root growth. Keeping up with weeds until winter is also important. This is done so they do not rob grass of essential nutrients required for strong root growth. A herbicide for fall application is recommended to kill off weeds before grass plants go dormant.
Planting and Transplanting
The same way that fall is a good time for growing new grassroots before the onset of winter, it is also a good time for planting new bulbs or transplanting cuttings or potted plants.
The weather is still warm enough to allow roots to establish before winter, which provides great springtime growth and healthier summer plants once the weather begins to warm. Healthier roots mean bigger, more beautiful plants in the spring and summer.
Bush and Tree Trimming
Trimming trees and bushes should be done when new growth is diminished that could otherwise stress plants just before the onset of winter. Pruning from late fall to early winter is recommended as plants have stopped growing and are in a dormant state. Be sure to prune correctly, based on what is recommended for each species.
General Landscape Cleanup and Repairs
Late autumn, before winter arrives, is also the best time to do a general landscaping cleanup. De-thatch lawns, rake up leaves once they finish falling, clean out plant beds, and apply a new layer of mulch to provide extra plant protection.
Check any hard-scaping features for damage, then repair or replace or make a plan to do so. When heading into cooler weather, a tidy yard and landscape will survive better, and leave less work to be done in the spring.
With winter on its way, any homeowner can rest assured their lawns and landscaping are in the best condition for the cold weather by following these few landscaping maintenance tips.
A knowledgeable landscaping company can easily provide these services. For the homeowner who prefers to be their own landscaper, these are very basic and easy tasks to do. The results will be well worth the effort come spring, when healthy lawns and landscapes spring to life after a good winter’s rest!