If you enjoyed a great summer of fun and relaxation boating, golfing, hiking, camping, etc., good for you! However, if you think you missed the boat on planting new trees, shrubs and perennials, and even lawn in your yard…think again! There is no better time to upgrade or tweak your yard, or even begin a whole new yard, than now.
The combination of cooler temperature (especially at night), warm soil and the possibility of more moisture in the form of rain make for a better growing environment for anything planted in the fall. This environment allows the plant to establish root growth for a longer period because it is getting ready to go dormant for the winter so a lot of energy isn’t spent developing new leaves and growth. The plants also don’t have to deal with being planted in cool or cold soil, days that just get hotter and relying on less moisture, in the form of rain or poor watering practices.
Planting Trees & Shrubs
A good practice when planting trees or shrubs in the fall is to mulch them to give good winter insulation and retain moisture. Some mulches also add a bit of nutrients to the soil around the plant. Better Earth Gardens & Tropicals has a variety of mulches that will suit your needs.
Early Fall Lawn Maintenance
Fall is also the best time to over-seed an existing lawn, seed a new lawn, or to lay sod. The reason again lies in the cooler temperatures which inhibit a lot of plant growth, but doesn’t hinder root growth. The lawn seed or sod will still have to be irrigated, but in lesser amounts because it is not too hot out and less moisture will disappear through evaporation.
For Bare Spots..
- Remove dead grass and break up the soil
- Work compost well into the soil
- Spread the best grass seed for sun or shade depending on the location
- Rake your seed into the soil to a depth of approximately 1/2 inch
- To prevent soil from drying, top with grass clippings
- Lightly water once a day until the see germinates
In the spring you will have a super new lawn with a deep established root system that will withstand weeds and the heat.
It’s Time to Plant Your Fall Bulbs for Spring
Many people love to plant fall bulbs which is a super way to get early enjoyment in the spring. These bulbs can make a spring garden burst out of the winter doldrums and get many a gardeners fingers itching to dig in the soil. Some of the best bulbs to plant in the fall are tulips, daffodils, crocuses, hyacinth, irises and Snowdrop (Galanthus). Visit the Farmer’s Almanac with all the info you need for planting Fall Bulbs for Spring Flowers.
Fall Planting Results in Earlier Blooms
Another exciting fall practice, other than planting bulbs, is to seed some spring flowers. Many seeds need cold to help them germinate, so the perfect answer is to winter over outside. This applies to perennials and annuals alike! Many annuals that do extremely well being seeded in the fall are pansies, snapdragons, flowering kale, mallow, and sweet peas. Try out a few inexpensive seeds and see what pokes through the ground next spring!