It’s hard to believe it’s September. Where does the time go? While fall is not yet in full swing, now’s the time to start prepping your yard for the cooler season. Fall maintenance is essential to maintaining not only the look of your yard but also its vitality. From seeding to weed control to tree and shrub care, there are many things you can do to give your yard a running start this fall and consequently next spring as well!
How To Get Your Knoxville Yard Ready For Fall
Rake Up Debris
This includes fallen leaves and any downed twigs, branches, and thatch in your lawn. If you opt for aeration, you won’t have to rake for thatch as much since the aeration process will break it up – more on this later. While raking leaves – or blowing them into piles – might seem like the most tedious of lawn care chores, it is essential for the health of your yard. If you allow wet leaves to cover your lawn, it will not only smother the grass but can lead to disease problems like mold and mildew. Many pests need dark, dank environments as well.
Mulch Around Trees, Shrubs, Flower Beds
If you have a mulcher, you can use all those leaves as free mulch! Leaves are valuable sources of nitrogen and carbon which plants need to grow. If you prefer to mulch with compost, you can add leaves to your compost bin as well. It’s an affordable way to give your ornamental plants some extra minerals and help them retain moisture – something mulch does in spades. Be careful not to overdo the mulch, however. Many people make the mistake of creating a mulch volcano around trees, which is actually detrimental. When it comes to mulch, more is not always better. And if you do decide to use the leaves from your yard, be sure they are torn or shredded into smaller pieces. This way, they will more easily incorporate into the soil. If you’re not sure which type of mulch would be best for your yard, just ask your lawn care service technician!
Zap Future Weeds
In summer, weed control measures focus on post-emergent products that spot treat any stragglers that slipped past the spring defenses. In fall, you should apply pre-emergent weed control as you would in spring. That way, any lingering seeds will be wiped out before they ever have a chance to germinate. Make sure to use a “selective” weed control product, which means that it will only affect unwanted weeds – leaving your turfgrass, trees, shrubs, and flowers unharmed.
Clear Out Gutter Debris
For the same reasons, you shouldn’t leave debris in your lawn and flower beds, you should also make sure your gutters are cleared out. Not only can clogged gutters become a breeding ground for mosquitoes and other pests and diseases, but they can also create structural problems with your home! All that water has to go somewhere, and it can lead to leaky roofs, rotting wood, erosion around your home’s foundation, cracks in the foundation, and basement flooding. Nature has no shortage of tricks up its sleeve, and mosquitoes can make do with any source of standing water to lay their eggs – no matter how small.
Aerate Your Yard
Fall is actually the ideal time to aerate and overseed. Aeration, also known as core aeration, breaks up compacted soil and breaks up the thatch layer. Soil becomes compacted over time. When soil is compact, it is hard like concrete, which means the turfgrass roots can’t expand properly. In addition, the normal flow of air, water, light, and nutrients can’t reach the root zone. In other words, your lawn is being smothered to death. Aeration fixes this by removing thousands of small plugs of soil out of your yard to loosen up the earth, giving your lawn room to breathe – literally. And if all that compaction and thatch created thin or bare patches, overseeding can thicken up your lawn again. Fall’s the ideal time to overseed because the days are warm but not hot, and the nights are cool, which means plenty of moisture to go around.
Treat Your Trees To Deep-root Injections
You might have heard of patients getting vitamin B injections from their doctor from time to time – maybe you get them yourself. This is because it delivers many nutrients that don’t get diluted in the digestive tract. Deep-root injections do this for your trees and shrubs. By injecting nutrients directly into their root system, your larger plants will soak up all that nutrients for themselves – without having to compete with turfgrass or other plants. It will ensure your ornamental plants have the minerals they need to store up for the winter and will have them primed and ready to hit the ground running come spring.
Find Knoxville Area Lawn Care Services
If doing all the hard work your lawn needs this fall sounds unappealing, leave it to Emerald Island Service. Our lawn care program will ensure your turfgrass gets all the nutrition it needs to make through winter, and our tree and shrub care program will give your ornamental plants the attention they deserve. To learn more, speak to an expert, or schedule an appointment, give us a call at 865-588-4497 or leave us a message online. Be sure to check out our blog page for more articles on lawn maintenance for Knoxville residents.