Happy Autumn! It’s time for football, pumpkin spice lattes, and fall clean-up. Other than the quintessential pile of autumn leaves, we will be discussing three projects you must do to prepare your yard for the first frost. If your yard is small, you can complete these projects in a couple of weekends. If your property is substantial or you want assistance, most areas have willing handymen or seasonal agricultural workers.
Winterize Irrigation Systems
All the effort and expense that it took to install an irrigation system can be for naught if a freeze damages the tubing. You can hire a company to blow out your irrigation, or do it yourself if you have an air compressor. To do it yourself, shut off the main water supply, then open the valve to release the remaining water. Hook up your air compressor to your system and flush it out using no more than 55-65 psi.
Aerate and Feed Lawn
Now that it’s autumn, rains and shorter days can impact the soil of your lawn. Aerate it with an aerator or garden fork, set your mower to 1 ¼ inch, and remove the clippings so sunlight can reach the soil. Give it some fertilizer too so it can come back strong in the Spring.
Trim and Mulch Plants
Even established plants need tending before the first frost. Trim any dead branches from trees, cut back perennial shrubs, and remove annuals. Pull weeds from around the bases of plants and put a layer of mulch to keep the roots insulated. If you have a garden bed, add compost to the soil and cover with a few inches of mulch to prevent weed growth in the early Spring.
Proper care for your yard before winter will give it a strong foundation to thrive once growing season begins.