Fall Fix Ups: Tips to Clean up Your Yard and Garden

Labor Day is just around the corner. Time to say “Goodbye Summer” and “Hello Football!” But before you can kick back on the couch to watch your favorite team, you need to take some time to prepare your home for the change in seasons.

Fall Yard and Garden Tips

It's before Labor Day and some of our trees are already showing signs that they're getting ready for winter. You should, too.

In this three-part post, we’re sharing our advice on getting your home ready for fall. We’ve broken down the information into bite-sized bits that should be easy to tackle – whether you’re doing a little at a time over the next few weeks, or taking on all your preparations over the long holiday weekend.

Fall Fix Ups: Yard and Garden

The weather is still warm and dry. The kids are out of school for a few more days. All you really want to do is enjoy these last sunny days of summer. Do I have to clean up the yard now? you think. Well, of course you don’t have to do it now, but if you wait, you’ll be shivering in your slicker in the rain trying to clean up your yard later.

Here’s our to-do list to make your yard clean up a snap:

Trim, trim, trim: Overgrown plants that touch your house can become a superhighway for pests like spiders and insects. And as the weather turns cooler, they’ll be looking for a warm place to nest. Overhanging tree limbs can damage roofs and windows, and the leaves they shed in fall can clog gutters. By trimming back trees, shrubbery, and summer plants now, you’ll save yourself a lot of hassle next season. Also, be sure to rake away any foliage that is near your foundation, especially if it is edible, to discourage pests and siding damage.

Stop sprinkling: As the rainy season sets in, you’ll need to water your lawn less and less. Take the time now to flush your in-ground sprinkler system and have the back flow checked. This will save you time next summer when you need those sprinklers to be working. If you have been using a hose-operated sprinkler, empty those hoses and bring them inside for storage. If they are left outside during the winter, wet hoses will be prone to splitting and cracking, forcing you to replace them at an added expense next summer.

Store safely: Once you’ve brought in your harvest of zucchini and tomatoes and made your last bouquet of glads and dahlias, it is time to clean and store your summer gardening tools. Oiling and sharpening any blades will make your spring garden prep easier. But be sure to keep your rake, leaf blower, and lawn mower handy. As the fall progresses, you will need to drain your lawn mower and store it for the winter, but during the transition season in the northwest, we still get plenty of sun and rain, making mowing necessary a while longer.

Swab the deck: When the summer barbeques are all done it is time to winterize your deck or patio. Clean your patio furniture and grill. Store them in a safe, dry location for the winter. Month after month of driving rain can rust out a new grill in a season. And wind storms throw branches that can tear through patio chairs and break tables. Keep your items safe in a garage or shed for the winter. And check out how to make your deck clean and sturdy in our previous blog post.

Winterize your lawn: Fall is a great time to refurbish your lawn. Thatching, fertilizing, and reseeding will keep your lawn looking healthy and green throughout the wet winter season. And it can undo a summer’s worth of damage from the Slip-and-Slide.

Plan for next year: After your yard is cleaned up, you’ll have space to dream about what you’d like to do with it next year. Put in a rose garden. Add a play structure. Invest in a hot tub. Construct a retaining wall. Whatever you’d like to do, Fazzolari Custom Homes can help you achieve your dream garden. Need a little inspiration? Join us at the Portland Fall Home & Garden Show where you’ll find a world of ideas.

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