For many, the ideal time for a beautiful yard is during the spring and summer months. This is when we most typically imagine beautiful blooms and blossoming gardens filled with flowers and fruits and vegetables. And while this is true, it overlooks the fact that here in the Pacific Northwest, we enjoy a climate that can accommodate certain types of blooms and blossoms all year long.
At Greenhaven Landscapes, our goal is to help everyone who seeks out our advice and services understand how they can have the yard of their dreams — not just for a few months out of the year, but for as long as you want to enjoy it in exactly the way you want to enjoy it.
Achieving your dream yard shouldn’t be hard. But some folks out there make this process more intimidating than it needs to be. Even if you’re not ready to pull in professional help from landscape artists, there are still a number of things you can do to keep your yard healthy, gorgeous, and usable in winter, spring, summer, and fall.
What is the most important yardwork to take care of in fall?
Keep it clean. This might seem like an obvious one, but one the easiest ways of creating an outdoor oasis is by keeping your yard and lawn clean. Seriously. It’s that simple. Besides, it gets you outside, keeps you active, and can lead to a deeper sense of pride once you’re done with the “hard work.” Pay special attention to flower pots, flower beds, vegetable gardens, and other areas where seasonal plants may die and debris can gather.
Are there plants or shrubs that need trimming before it gets colder? Do you have an outdoor planting station that needs to be cleaned up or features seasonal items that should be put into storage? This is the perfect time!
Don’t forget to clean out the gutters! Catching this early in the season will prevent any water-related mishaps and prevent you from getting out the ladder in the middle of a rainstorm.
Lawn care is self-care. We understand that everyone has slightly different relationships with their lawns than others might. Some of you monitor your lawn on the daily, meticulously mowing and edging, whereas others perhaps can’t be bothered. We’re here to help you meet in the middle. Autumn is a perfect time to prepare your lawn for the colder winter months so that when the rain tapers off a bit and spring arrives your once-dormant life will become alive, lush, and beautiful.
Remove leaves and debris — The removal of leaves and other debris from your lawn not only gives it a better, cleaner appearance (one that will surely increase your yard’s curb appeal and your sense of personal pride) but will also help with your lawn’s overall health. Having a lawn that is covered with layers of debris will ultimately suffocate the grass you have and cause it to die.
Remove weeds — Dandelions, clover, and the like don’t need too much encouragement before they establish themselves and begin to take over your lawn. Stay ahead of the game by spot treating your lawn when you see them start to take root, including during the fall months. Leaving these areas untreated will eventually turn your beautiful lawn into a field of weeds.
Keeping mowing — Some folks have the mindset that once fall comes and the weather starts to cool off that yard and lawn work are no longer a priority. We’re here to tell you that it’s not over, it’s that it’s just different. Fall especially is a time of year here in the Pacific Northwest where we’re still quite apt to experience overlapping periods of rain and sun, which, naturally, leads to an increase in the growth of your lawn. A well-maintained, mowed lawn is ultimately a happier, healthier lawn, and staying on top of its maintenance during these colder months will also make your springtime lawn care that much simpler.
Aerate — This task might seem next-level to some of you, but it’s really not too complicated. You can either rent or purchase an aerator from most garden centers or hardware stores. The goal here is to loosen up your yard’s soil a bit and create a healthy growing environment for new and existing grass. Over the course of a year, for all sorts of reasons, your yard’s soil can become very compact. Aeration, whether you’re using a clete-style aerator or a gas-powered version, will pull small cylindrical “plugs” of dirt out of your lawn, creating space for water, air, and other nutrients to seep in.
Feed and seed — Yes, it’s fall. And yes, your lawn still needs fertilizer and seed. Remember that there are different types of fertilizers for different times of year. Some experts recommend a more nitrogen-rich fertilizer for autumn vs. some of the other fertilizers available and best applied in different times of the year. Similarly, examine your lawn and look for thinner areas or bare spots that can be caused by killing large patches of weeds, pet waste, or other factors, seeding according to the recommended seasonal instructions.
Plan it and plant it. This is also a great time to look ahead. In other words, fall is the perfect season to start planning your spring flower gardens. Crocus, daffodils, and grape hyacinth are just a few of the flowers whose bulbs are recommended for planting in the fall. Just make sure you’re giving them proper distance from one another and they’re in an area where they’re still getting the sun and water they need to flourish.