Fall Landscaping Preparation
From irrigation blowouts to a final mowing, there is a lot that has to be done to prepare your lawn for the onslaught of winter. Now is a perfect time to tackle these fall landscape chores so you can ensure a successful lawn come spring.
Blow out the Irrigation System
You can take chances with other aspects of lawn care but not your sprinkler system. If you don’t winterize it properly in the fall, you can cause irreparable damage to it that will be very costly to fix. Because New England experiences many months of frozen ground, irrigation pipes can easily burst — not to mention sprinkler heads can shatter if there is water left in the system to freeze, says the Landscaping Network. Here is an overview of the steps to take to winterize your irrigation system. A professional landscaper has the knowledge and tools to get this job done quickly.
- Unplug the timer to avoid power surges.
- Turn off the main water valve if this is your vacation home.
- Remove backflow preventer and valves.
- Add anti-freeze to your pump.
- Blow out the water.
This process can get tricky, which is why it’s important to adhere to all steps or hire a pro to do it for you. It will be well worth your peace of mind knowing it was done right.
Fertilize to Ensure Future Growth
You may fertilize once or twice in the spring and summer, which is great. But if you only do it once per year, fall is the time to do it. This is because grass grows more slowly over winter but the roots will continue to grow sight unseen. When you apply fertilizer in fall, this gives your lawn essential nutrients to keep those roots healthy till spring, says Popular Mechanics. It’s best to wait till the middle of fall or late in the season; spread a dry lawn fertilizer, being careful to get all areas. A walk-behind drop spreader ensures optimal coverage.
A Final Mowing
Before you return your lawn mower for the season, it’s time to do one final mowing. This Old House advises trimming down to 1 1/4 inches at this time, as disease isn’t as likely to affect short grass. Plus, all those leaves that have fallen from the trees will blow right across your yard instead of getting stuck on tall grass and piling up. Be careful, though, as trimming too short can cut off the food supply from the roots. That’s because grass makes the majority of its food from the upper part of the blade.
Now is the time that many nurseries and home improvement garden centers have plants, trees and shrubs on sale. Get ahead of the crazy sales of spring and stock up now. You’ll get good bargains because nurseries are trying to get rid of these items. Bonus: cooler weather and fall rains put less stress on young plants.
Need help with all this? Call T&B Landscaping in Andover now at (978) 296-5290.