One of the great pleasures of owning a nice home, (and also one of the greatest sources of work!) is taking care of your yard.
The more beautiful and complex your yard tends to be, the more work it is to maintain.
Chances are, even if you have someone come mow the lawn, you want to take care of things like flower beds, fountains, bushes, etc yourself. Here are some fall yard cleanup tips that will help you save time and also keep the outside of your house as well kept as the inside.
- Perennials with different blooming seasons. Everybody thinks of summer as the time for flowers to bloom and your yard to be at its peak. However, there are many perennials that bloom at different times, and in different seasons. You can look to plant perennials in the fall to mix things up and create a different looks for each season. More hardy fall and winter perennials include: mums, holly bush, Japanese maple, camellia, winterberry holly, sumac, yellow or red dogwood, hellebore, Russian sage, and beautyberry.
- Keep in mind that there are other options besides grass. Clover, moss, and other low growing ground covers are great to substitute for grass, and there are also other options that are deer resistant as well. Make sure that the option you choose is not too aggressive, because some will creep and crawl out of the area that they are intended to occupy. Clover has even been known to keep weeds at bay.
- Over-seeding your grass. If you are going to go with grass, over-seeding it at this time of year is a good idea. Cut your grass down to about one inch high and make sure and rake up the grass clippings. By doing this, you can now spread out new seed and fertilizer once the grass germinates.
- Mulch your plant beds. One of the best things you can do for your plant beds is mulch. It organically adds nutrients to the soil and provides tons of benefits for your beds with a very minimum amount of effort. Mulch thickness should be kept around three inches in depth and you will want to keep an eye on it. Over time it will thin out, and that just means that you need to add more.
- Decorative rock. If you have areas around your house or plant beds where it is tough to get things to grow, you may want to think about installing some decorative rock. Rock provides endless variety in both color and size, so you can pretty much use it in any way that your imagination can come up with. Keep in mind, the smaller the pebbles, the more likely they are to blow around, so if you live in an area with high winds, you will want to go with larger stones. Other than that, get creative with it and you will find that the ‘trouble’ area in that one flower bed is now not only beautiful and interesting, but it is basically maintenance free.
- Check your watering schedule. With fall coming on you are going to want to adjust the amount of water that you apply to the various parts of your yard. What works during the summer will need to be altered for fall and winter. Drip hoses are great for flower beds if you do not have soakers installed as a part of your automatic sprinkler system and there are tons of other options that you can use to get to the parts of your yard that don’t get as much moisture. Timers are also helpful to add so that you don’t need to water when rain is expected. There are also many ‘smart’ options that you can use to set your watering cycles if your house is equipped with Alexa or another smart device.
- Grow local plants. If you focus on plants that are native to the region you live in, you will have much better luck at keeping them growing year round. You can usually find local varieties at your local nursery, and they tend to be fairly inexpensive. Simply asking for advice at one of these places will likely get you some great tips as to what grows the best in your area.
- Stop pruning. In order to keep your plants growing at their peak level into the following year, you will want to make sure to stop pruning in the fall months. Everyone has the urge to prune them back for winter, but it is much more healthy to let them grow out a bit. They will look better in the spring this way and you can also take a break from the maintenance for a few months.