It’s officially fall, and cold winter weather is just around the corner. Before the season turns again, it’s a good time to catch up on outdoor maintenance. There are certain steps that should be taken to winterize and maintain your property. Here’s a checklist with some of the most important autumn chores.
- This is the time to plant perennials, or to transplant and divide existing perennials.* They’ll have a chance to establish healthy new roots through the cold months, then they’ll be strong and healthy next spring. Be sure to keep them watered until the rain kicks in.
- Pull out any spent annuals.* Throw out the dirt from potted plants, its nutrients have been zapped from the plants throughout the season.
In your cleared flower beds, plant spring bulbs. You can plant fall annuals* on top of the bulbs, such as pansies, kale and mums. Just be sure not to disturb the bulbs when you remove the annuals later.
- Schedule to have your irrigation system shut down* prior to the first hard freeze. You’ll also want to drain and bring in hoses.
- Mulch leaves into the grass as they fall, or start a compost pile. Those leaves are full of rich nutrients that your lawn and garden can use.
- Use that mulch on your perennials to give them a nutrient-rich blanket of protection for the winter.
- Make sure to have a good winter fertilization applied on your lawn.
- This is the time to prune shrubs and trees.* A good pruning now will encourage healthy growth in the spring.
- Winterize fountains and water features.
*Need to save time? Items marked with an asterisk are services Stonebridge Outdoor can help you with. Call us at 1-816-322-2586 to see how we can help reduce your fall honey-do list.
- Change vents, make sure your furnace is in good working order. It’s a good idea to schedule a furnace tune-up.
- Walk around your home, caulk windows, add insulation, make any outdoor repairs.
- Call in a chimney sweep. Cresote can build up in chimneys, causing a dangerous fire hazard. Having your chimney professionally cleaned will also alert you to any other maintenance issues that need to be addressed.
- Clean out gutters and downspouts. If you’re in a neighborhood with taller trees, you might need to do this several times.
- Before you have to button up the windows, do any tasks that require open windows – indoor painting, shampooing or replacing carpets, self-cleaning the oven.
- Check smoke detector batteries. Make a habit of changing them out when Daylight Saving Time begins and ends (November 6, 2011).
- Ice storms and power outages are inevitable, especially in older neighborhoods with raised power lines. Get your emergency kit together now so you’ll be prepared.
Now that the weather is more pleasant for spending time outdoors, be sure to allow yourself time to enjoy some of the fun local activities. Some of our favorites are the Renaissance Festival, all the local pumpkin patches, tailgating at Arrowhead, and the American Royal. Here’s a great resource for finding out what’s going on around town. VisitKC.Com