Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The "F" Word - Getting Your Home Ready for "Fall" - BTSH Around The House Tip of the Week

It’s the season that usually follows two months of scorching heat, and is often welcomed with it’s cooler temperatures. Unfortunately this year it follows a somewhat questionable summer, but nonetheless, it’s best to come to terms with the facts—Fall is approaching Fast and Furious, and you need to make sure that both you, and your yard, are prepared.

Preparing The Garden
- Remove annuals that have finished blooming
- Trim back perennials
- Some gardeners will recommend digging up sensitive bulbs and bringing in for the winter—be sure not dig up though until after the first frost
- I like to split some of my herbs and replant in pots to bring in for the winter—plant in pots and leave outside for at least 1 week before bringing in—this will avoid too much stress to the plant
- Add mulch to help to protect your bed over the winter

Plant Spring Bulbs
Most spring bulbs require that you plant them approximately 6 weeks before the first frost. Some great spring bloomers are:
- Daffodils
- Tulips
- Hyacinths
- Crocus’
- Snowdrops

Lawn Care
Don’t wait until spring to get your lawn ready—let your lawn work for you over the months that it is buried in snow, giving you a thick, green lawn in the spring. Mix soil, fertilizer, and lawn seed in a wheelbarrow, and spread throughout the lawn. This is also a great time to level out some uneven areas by adding a little more soil. Remember that most grass seeds need water, so be sure to water regularly if rain is not in the forecast. Putting down grass seed just before the snow falls helps to keep the seeds moist, and allow them to work into the soil before the ground freezes. To prepare your lawn, rake first with a thatching rake to pull up dead roots, stems, and leaves. Also ensure that all fallen leaves are raked up before the first snow fall.

Bringing In The Rain Barrel
Drain and disconnect your rain barrel in the fall to ensure your rain barrel and the overflow hose do not crack. Store in a garage or shed over the winter and store your overflow hose indoors. If you must store your rain barrel outdoors, drain it and put it upside-down with the water valve left open.

Written by Shauna Lynn, Beyond The Stage Homes

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