Fall has arrived, and that means it’s time to do a few things around the house to get ready for the cold winter months ahead of us. Take a look at some things you should work into your schedule now.
Colorful falling leaves are a beautiful part of the season, but a blanket of leaves on your lawn can smother it and hurt your chances of a nice green lawn next spring. Leaves are highly compostable, though, so if you don’t have a compost pile, either start one or ask a neighbor who has one if they’d like your leaves. They’ll compost faster if you crush them up before tossing them on the pile, but you don’t have to. Don’t be too fastidious about getting the leaves out of flower beds, though. A nice layer of leaves will help insulate perennials you have planted there and they’ll help feed the plants as they decompose.
In early November, it’s a good idea to spread a layer of fertilizer on the lawn with a high phosphorus mixture. This will promote root growth over the winter and help the grass green up sooner in the spring. Fall is also the time to fertilize shrubs and trees, so don’t forget them while you’re out there.
Now is the time to cut back your perennials and remove leftover vegetation from flower beds (into the compost pile, of course).
While it’s still nice outside, gather all of your summer tools and machinery, clean them up and store them away for the winter. If you get a lot of snow where you live, get the snowblower out and make sure it’s running properly. There’s nothing worse than having to fix it in the freezing cold so you can get the snow out of your way when it’s here. While you’re going through tools, make sure your snow shovel is handy and in working order. Trying to replace it in a blizzard will most likely mean you’ll be out of luck.
If you have an irrigation system, make sure it’s cleared of water so you don’t have a pipe burst. Also, make sure you disconnect and drain your water hoses, coil them up and store them in your shed. Make sure you cover your hose bibs and insulate any pipe that is exposed to freezing temperatures.
Now give your porch a sweep and enjoy the lovely autumn weather and know that when winter comes, it won’t hit you so hard.