Preserving yard landscaping before winter settles in

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INDIANAPOLIS — As the weather takes a turn and winter approaches, it’s tempting to wrap up outdoor yard work with one last mow.

However, beyond the mower’s hum lies a checklist of tasks that will make a significant difference in the appearance and health of your landscaping come spring. In this week’s Home Zone, we’ll explore essential tips to ensure your lawn, trees, and shrubs not only survive the winter but thrive when the warmer days return.

There are also a few extras not seen in the TV version.

Outdoor Cleanup:

Summer lawn care may have been a breeze, but as late fall settles in, it’s time to gather those leaves. To prevent a springtime mess or unwanted rotting leaves, use a blower to clear them away from your home.

This simple step not only keeps your yard tidy but also sets the stage for the winterizing process.

Bush Trimming:

Before a hard freeze or snowfall, trim your bushes to make spring maintenance easier and prevent breakage if snow accumulates. Whether you opt for an electric trimmer or prefer a manual touch, a little effort now saves a lot of trouble later.

Trimming bushes isn’t just a winterizing chore; it’s an investment in the future health of your landscape.

Tree Care:

For small trees like arborvitaes, rake them from the bottom up to clean out dead areas. Avoid raking from the top down to prevent limb breakage. Don’t forget to unscrew the hose well before frost to avoid pipe damage.

These small tree care practices are not just about aesthetics but contribute to the overall resilience of your greenery.

Edge Cleanup:

Clean up the lawn edges around rock or mulch beds and cut a deep line around sidewalks and driveways to prevent winter matting. For an extra touch, consider edging and blowing simultaneously, as demonstrated by the legendary lawn expert and neighbor, Steve.

These neat edges aren’t just for aesthetics; they play a role in the overall health of your landscaping.

Mowing Tips:

When it comes to mowing, be gentle on your grass as winter approaches. Steve shares his wisdom on double mowing to maintain a well-groomed lawn.

“Sometimes the reason you should double mow are because of the length of the grass.  Because the grass was so tall recently, I had to cut it down one level to get it back to another level.  If you do it all at once, you can scalp the grass,” said Steve.

Leaf Management:

The dreaded task of raking and picking up leaves becomes more manageable with a lawnmower equipped with a bagger. Alternatively, mulch the leaves to nourish your lawn. This step is not just about convenience but a strategic move to enrich your soil for the upcoming seasons.

Fertilize:

A mid to late-fall fertilization ensures your turf is nutrient-rich, promoting healthy root growth for the winter and a vibrant start next spring.

Lay Mulch:

Protect trees, shrubs, and plants by adding a layer of mulch or pine straw to maintain even temperatures throughout winter. It protects roots from frost and retains moisture.

Aerate:

Aerating your turf allows essential elements like water, oxygen, and fertilizer easier access to the roots, providing the essentials for winter survival.

Pipe Protection:

Unscrew any outdoor hoses. If you don’t, they can freeze and that cold air can actually break the pipes they are connected to ensure the wall of your home. And that can be an expensive fix.

Conclusion:

By incorporating these proactive winterizing tips into your routine, you’ll not only save time and effort in the spring but also ensure your landscaping remains vibrant and healthy throughout the winter months.

Prepare your property for the colder weather and reap the rewards of a stunning landscape next spring.

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