7 Point Fall Lawn and Garden Clean-up Checklist
It will officially be Autumn in a few days, which means it’s fall lawn and garden clean-up time. Cleaning your lawn in the fall isn’t only so it looks good until next spring. In many ways, it’s to protect and improve your yard. Getting your lawn and garden ready for winter will make your spring lawn preparation easier. Here are 7 points to an effective fall lawn and garden clean-up.
7 Point Fall Lawn and Garden Cleanup Checklist
1. Lay Waste to the Waste
Rake up the leaves, pull up the weeds, and pick up any debris, such as sticks and wind-blown trash. All of which can be perfect places for pests to winter. But don’t stop there; clean up your flower beds and pull the plants from your vegetable patch. Doing this is the perfect time to compost for next spring.
2. Clean the Gutters
My home sits at the bottom of a hill covered in mature hardwood trees. There are maple, oak, walnut, and more. The leaves don’t fall all at once. Each species sheds their leaves in their own time. Before I had gutter toppers installed, I’d clean my gutters on the back, or hill side, two or three times from fall to early winter. Gutters that become full of leaves can cause damage to your home. Here’s more on When Should You Clean Your Gutters?
3. Trim Dead limbs
Trimming dead and diseased limbs from your bushes and trees before winter arrives is best. Dead and diseased limbs can propagate and spread disease. Another thing to consider is whether there are any dangerous or threatening limbs. If central Indiana has its annual ice storm this winter, are there any limbs that, if they fell, could damage your property? Since I’m at the bottom of a wooded hill, I keep an eye on this and have trimmed several limbs that could have fallen on my home, garage, or gardening shed.
4. Drain the Hose
Have you ever waited too long to drain your garden hose, and it froze? I have, and guess what? I had to replace the hose. It’s not only the hose but most outdoor water features that should be drained. I have three water fountains in my backyard. Two are vases where water flows from the top into a hidden container below. The other is a small waterfall. I don’t drain all three, but I remove the pumps and store them for the winter. A pump encased in frozen water might not pimp much water the next year.
5. Aerate your Lawn
Aerating your soil will help nutrients and water reach your grass roots this winter. It can also help prevent pooling so, unless you want a skating pond in your front yard this winter you might consider aeration. I’ve used a garden fork for small areas, but I hired Berger Hargis last week to aerate and reseed my entire lawn with their walk-behind aerators.
6. Feed Me Seymour
Fall is a great time to feed your lawn with high phosphorus fertilizer. This not only provides your lawn the nutrition it needs to hibernate through a cold central Indiana winter, but also promotes root growth which leads to a lush green spring lawn.
7. Clean and Store your Lawn and Garden Tools
Okay, I’ve been known to throw my gardening tools in a bucket and put them in the shed, but you should do more to keep them in tip-top shape. So, don’t do what I’ve done. Do what I’m doing this year which is to clean my tools, dry them, and then lightly rub them with oil before I store them for the winter. Click here for an End of the Season Mower Maintenance Checklist and more.
It’s Fall Lawn and Garden Clean-up Time
This fall, taking some time to prepare your yard and gardens for the winter will lead to less work and a better lawn and garden next spring. It might be essential this year with the winter weather forecast for central Indiana. I don’t like being the bearer of bad news, but The Farmers’ Almanac predicted “unreasonably cold and snowy” winter for the 2022-2023 winter season.
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About the Author
Randy Clark is a speaker, coach, and author. He publishes a weekly blog at Randy Clark Leadership.com. Randy is passionate about social media, leadership development, and flower gardening. He’s a beer geek, and on weekends he can be found fronting the Rock & Roll band Under the Radar. He’s the proud father of two educators; he has four amazing grandchildren and a wife who dedicates her time to helping others. Randy is the author of the Amazon bestseller The New Manager’s Workbook, a crash course in effective management.