During this time of year most homeowner are simply looking forward to no more mowing! And there's a good chance that you’ve already put the lawn mower away. For many folks, fall is a time to get ready for the holidays and enjoy the waning days before the rain and cold sets in.
But it's also a great time to stay on top of your lawn care. In fact, there are a number of tasks that are best done in the fall and winter. One of these tasks is regularly maintaining your lawn to ensure a healthy and good-looking yard when spring comes around next year.
Lawn Care Tips for the Fall
Many homeowners think that because the grass grows more slowly in the fall that their lawns need little or no care during those months. But it is during this time of year that your grass is absorbing energy, moisture, and nutrients in preparation for winter. And by giving your lawn the proper care now, you'll have a more lush and healthy lawn next spring.
Here are some helpful tips and hints to guide you through your lawn care chores for this fall:
- Set Up a Mowing Plan
You should continue to water and mow your lawn, as needed, throughout the fall months. As the winter months get close, lower the mower blades to the lowest setting for your last couple of mowing sessions. This allows more sunlight to reach the crown of the grass, where the roots and shoots meet, so that there will be less leaf to turn brown during the winter.
When you do lower the blade, do not cut off more than one-third of the grass blades in one pass. If you need to you can gradually lower the cutting height until the time of the final two mowings.
- Rake Your Lawns Well
Raking leaves is real work, unless you use a blower, but either way it's beneficial to remove dead leaves from your lawn as soon (and often) as possible. You should start raking once the first leaves have fallen from the trees. If you wait until all the leaves have finally come down, they will become wet from rain. This creates thick mats of organic material that will not only suffocate your grass but can promote the growth of fungal diseases.
If you have the equipment you can also use a collection bag or vacuum system with your lawnmower. This is a really good method if you have large yards or a large number of deciduous trees. The key is to remove the leaves and fallen branches before they can damage your lawn.
- Aerating is Great in the Fall
This is an ideal time to aerate your lawn. Aerating makes it far easier for oxygen, water, and fertilizer to reach the roots of your lawn grass. The second-easiest method is to rent a gas-powered, walk-behind lawn aerator. This self-propelled machine will quickly punch holes into the soil and extract plugs of dirt. However, the easiest method is to hire a landscaping contractor, especially if you've got a very large yard.
- Caring for the Bald Spots
Typically, the easiest way to repair bald spots in your lawn is with an all-in-one lawn repair mixture. These can be purchased at most garden shops and home and garden supply centers. They will contain a mixture of grass seed, a quick-starter lawn fertilizer, and organic mulch. Carefully follow the directions on the product package.
It's often in the fall and winter that new bald spots can be formed. One way to avoid this is to prevent excessive foot traffic on your winter lawn, especially when the grass is brown and short. Lawn grass is quite resilient, but it'll have a difficult time fully recovering from a well-worn path.
- Fall is the Time to Fertilize
Most lawn experts agree that, if you fertilize your lawn only once a year, fall is the best time to do so. As the weather cools grass leaves grow much more slowly, but the grass roots and rhizomes continue to grow quickly. Rhizomes are the horizontal plant stems that lie just beneath the soil's surface that produce the blades of grass above and the roots below.
If you apply sufficient and proper fertilizer in the fall it will deliver essential nutrients that will help your grass to grow deep roots now and also provide additional nutrients for the spring.
- Attack Your Lawn Weeds
If your lawn was invaded during the summer by broadleaf weeds like dandelions, fall is the time to fight back. Like most plants, weeds are in an energy-absorbing state during the fall. And because they are also drinking extensively this makes them vulnerable to weed killers. By applying a good herbicide in the fall those weeds won't be back in the spring.
Prepare Your Lawn and Landscaping For Spring in the Fall
In most regions of the United States there's not much lawn care or landscaping upkeep that needs to be done during the cold winter months. Even if you typically don’t have snow in the winter, your home may be in a location that experiences freezing temperatures and frost. Not to worry! Your lawn should remain safely dormant until spring.
If you properly prepare the lawn during the last weeks of fall, it will be good until spring arrives. Then all you need to concern yourself with is the lawn debris removal.
Two Most Common Types of Lawn Grasses
There are a wide variety of turf and lawn grasses, however, there are generally two main types of lawns for the residential yard: warm season grass and cool season grass. Which type you have is usually dependent upon where you live.
- Warm Season Grasses: These include Bermuda grass, Zoysiagrass, Buffalo grass, and Bahia, which are all warm season grasses. Typically, these grass types are found in warmer climates like the south, and have a peak growing season from spring to fall. These grasses can turn brown during the winter months, but they typically thrive in the hot summer heat.
- Cool Season Grasses: Bluegrasses, Fescues and Ryegrasses are all common cool season grasses. These grasses not only grow well in cold winter/warm summer regions, but they tend to stay green nearly all year long. In periods of drought, however, these grasses need to be watered well. Otherwise, they will enter a dormant period and turn brown.
What Do You Do About Yard Debris and Junk Hauling?
Once you decide to outsource the junk hauling part of your fall preparation projects, you need to determine which firm is the right one for the job. And while you can certainly find plenty of guys with trucks willing to do the job, choosing that alternative may end up costing you more than you hoped to save. This is why Junk King really is the firm of choice.
Junk King provides an efficient, safe and eco-friendly waste disposal services so you don’t need to worry about the pick up or disposal of the debris after your project is complete. Whether you need our services several times during a project or just once after it is complete, our hauling professionals will ensure that the debris is out of your way so that you can get on with the job.
Our team specializes in commercial and residential junk removal. We can be at your home in mere minutes, so call us today! Our crew is fully insured and well-trained, so you can trust them to get rid of your unwanted items in a professional and courteous fashion.
One of the best things about hiring Junk King is that we recycle a much of the material we pick-up. This is proof of our commitment to being an eco-friendly removal service. If you have questions about what we do or what we believe, give us a call at (707) 744-4254.