Cool, crisp air. Delicious apples. Competitive football. All proof that fall has indeed arrived. And while the days may be shorter, and your grass may not grow as quickly, your yard still needs some attention to prepare for the harsh winter. So what do you need to do? Here's a list of some of the obvious and not-so-obvious steps you should take to ensure a healthy yard or garden for next spring.
- Rake leaves. Those piles of leaves you loved playing with in childhood are definitely not as much fun to rake in adulthood. But the fact is, raking is essential, as excess leaves can suffocate and ruin your lawn.
- Repair damaged lawn areas. If you have sun spots or other damage, be sure to repair them.
- Continue to water your lawn. Even in the fall, it's critical that your lawn gets hydrated. Be sure to water your lawn and remaining plants frequently and thoroughly.
- Fertilize your lawn. Your lawn is actually what it eats. Fertilizing will help strengthen and prepare your lawn for the cold winter.
- Weed. Think weeding is just for the spring and summer? Fall presents the perfect opportunity to take control of weeds and reduce the amount of weeding you have to do in the spring.
- Remove unhealthy plants and vegetables. Diseased plants can ruin any plantings you do in the future. Remove them down to the roots.
- Trim shrubs. Cut off loose and vulnerable branches in shrubs and trees.
- Remove pet waste. A quick scoop of your lawn can ensure you don't have any unpleasant surprises when the snow melts.
- Aerate soil. Aeration helps loosen and air out soil. When you aerate soil, you can leave the plugs on your lawn, where they will break down into the soil.
- Get mowing. Set your mower to the highest level during the fall and give your lawn one last mowing for the winter.
For more fall garden and lawn tips, visit thisoldhouse.com.