October 2, 2019 Sharon Lewis

Home maintenance is super important, both to keep your house looking and operating at its best. Fall is a great time to  do some cleaning and maintainance before snow falls or its too cold to do it. Here  are a few tips on getting ready for the cooler days ahead

Flower Beds

Many homeowners think that letting leaves pile up on the beds protects them and gives them a good start in the spring.The problem is, piled leaves can also give insects and other pests a place to ‘bed down’ in the winter and even gain access to your home. If you have rose beds, diseases and fungal infections may also stick around on those leaves, only to resurface in the spring.

What to Do With All Those Leaves?

I know I just said don’t put them in the bet…but, do spread fallen leaves, compost and any other material that will break down over the winter and cover your garden soil with it. and….run a tiller over the grass, or bed (dont do this if you have bulbs in there please), breaking up the soil and driving that compostable material into the soil. This will take care of your leaves and other material AND make starting your garden easier in the spring! Oh I have been told that those leaves are actually good for your lawn. Ask your local garden center though

Hoses

Before you do that, though, clean off your house, giving it one last spray cleanup before winter, then….make sure the water is out of the hose. In this area, many people use hose bib covers to protect the bibs…you can of course turn off the water to those bibs as well and drain so they don’t freeze. We do get snow here most winters, now.

Screens

You might want to carefully pull the screens off the house and give them a good spray cleaning before you put the hose away as well, but…remember in this area we get heavy pollen in the spring…so you may want to do it later after the pollen.

Aerate for Winter

If you have drainage problems in the winter, fall is a good time to aerate your yard. While you can do this using hand tools, a lot of outdoor and hardware stores have machine aerators that you can rent. The aerator breaks through the packed topsoil, which gives water an easier route to drain in the event of a wet autumn or winter season. Bonus, grass grows better in the spring.

One Last Mow

Grass stops growing in the fall, however,there’s still a good case for giving your yard one final mow. Wait until a lot of your yard tasks are finished, then run over the yard with the blade set low. Use a mulching guard and/or mulching blade for even better effect. This will not only grab stray leaves but it will also ensure that your grass has a nice even cut before it starts growing again in the spring.