Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Preparing your yard for fall

Cooling temperatures and rainy days signal that fall is here and it's that time again where we need to begin winding things down while the weather is still favorable. 

Although the month isn't quite over, this September we have had 7.29" of rain, more than double the 3.44" Cleveland normally receives.  While this has been good weather for rehabilitating lawns that did not fair well from the spring and summer weather, our garden beds are saturated from all the rain.  Be cautious about over watering plants this time of year, but don't put away your hoses just yet.  A dry October may rob plants of needed moisture before winter - so wait another four to six weeks before putting away the hoses because we may still need them yet. 

In the coming few weeks you can take advantage of the good weather days to accomplish the following:

  • Finish final maintenance trimming and pruning of plants by October 15th. 
  • Prune plants now for clearance along driveways, walks and buildings or to remove any damaged or diseased plant parts. Hold off on major trimming/pruning until late winter and early spring.
  • Remove leaves and sticks from garden beds, lawns and other areas of the yard as we go through fall
  • Remove summer annuals when they begin to die back from cooler temperatures
  • Replace summer flowers with new fall annual color - mums, cabbage and kale will last 6 to 8 weeks
  • Plant spring flowering bulbs before the ground freezes
  • Cut down perennials after several killing frosts
  • Determine which perennials need to be divided now, remove unwanted plants from the garden
  • Apply fertilizer to the lawn before the end of October
  • Aerate the lawn to improve root development and to help dry the lawn out
  • Spot seed thin or bare areas
  • Inspect outdoor lighting, replace bulbs as needed. Adjust timer as necessary.
  • Prepare firewood for the winter season
Good sanitation is important to maintaining a healthy landscape. By cleaning up leaves and dead plant parts you will minimize the potential for recurring disease issues. A clean landscape also minimizes places that rodents and other pests can hide.

Here is a printable version of our year long calendar check list for your yard and garden.

1 comment:

Hancey said...
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