Everyone loves spending the summer outside in the yard; barbecues, parties and just enjoying the warm sunshine on your face are all part and parcel of having a well maintained yard all season long. However, as with all good things, summer comes to an end and you’ll find yourself gradually spending less and less time in your yard. All good homeowners know that this is the cue to start your fall maintenance and winter preparation procedures, but the list of tasks can feel overwhelming. When considering to sell your home, it’s also important to ensure landscaping has been taken care of. When it comes to taking care of landscaping tasks, it’s easier to break up your fall maintenance by how long each task will take and plan them out accordingly.
5 Minute Tasks
The easiest fall clean up tasks around your yard are those that you can complete in five minutes or so. This means that you can do them as a quick chore before work or in between playing with the kids on the last warm days. These tasks include:
- Debris pick up – the change in weather that heralds fall also impacts your trees and bushes. Doing a quick pick up of fallen leaves and branches will prevent them from rotting and decaying on your grass. A good leaf cleanup will also stop them blocking the sun and essential rainfall that your lawn needs to survive the winter.
- Clear dog mess – if you own a pet, or your garden is the local bathroom for the neighbourhood dogs, you’ll want to take five minutes with a pooper scooper and clear any dog mess from your yard. If you leave it, it will decompose over winter and the bacteria from carnivorous animal’s poop can be harmful to your yard.
- Put away the toys – finally, it’s easy for baseballs and hula hoops to get left out all winter long. Task your kids with picking these up so that you don’t mow them by accident or leave them out to be ravaged by the winter weather.
Single Evening Jobs
Some fall maintenance tasks will take a little longer so you’ll want to pick a sunny evening to complete these tasks:
- Weed the flower beds – weeding the flower beds one last time before winter is an essential way of providing enough space for your favored plants to get enough nutrients and sunlight to store energy for the winter. It can also be a very therapeutic evening activity after a tough day at work.
- One last mow – your fall lawn needs to be short but left slightly longer than your usual summer mow. This is to allow the longer grass to absorb the reduced sunlight in the winter months without block the ground from absorbing the increased precipitation that will kick start the spring growth.
- Pruning – trimming and pruning your bushes in fall will allow you to promote better growth in spring as well as forcing the plant to conserve more energy over the winter months. In most cases, it’s a question of looking for dead limbs and shoots to trim, but you should consult our experts if you have more exotic shrubs that you’re unsure about pruning.
Weekend Fall Projects
Finally, there are a couple of projects that you’ll want to dedicate a weekend to. These tasks are less about clean up and more about getting your yard ready for a productive spring:
- Preparing new lawn – if you get the timing right, fall is a great time to patch up your lawn. Start with aeration, where you use a rake or a tiller to break up the bare soil and oxygenate the top layer. Add your chosen grass seed and lay down a layer of protective material such as straw or hay. This will trap moisture as well as discouraging birds from picking at your new seeds. As with any lawn, you’ll still need to water it frequently to kick start the germination process, but the fall and winter precipitation will start to take care of this.
- Starting a new soil bed – fall is a great time to think about starting up a new soil bed for spring growth. Rather than just buying loam or fill, you can create your own soil by adding layers of decomposing organic materials with composting worms over the course of a few weekends. Adding mineral rich material such as seaweed will give you a highly productive soil to use when spring rolls around.
All of these tasks require you to map out your fall maintenance schedule, and to have the time to dedicate to your yard this season. If you know that you easily run out of time or you’re just unsure about how to approach your fall clean up work, the experts here at Scoop Cut N Shovel will work with you to create an affordable fall clean up plan, leaving you free to enjoy the last of the warmer weather.