There are multiple Fall lawn and landscaping practices that are integral to improving your curb appeal. Many homeowners invest their time and money into landscaping and lawn care services during the Spring and Summer, as this is the time that is being spent outdoors, and then neglect their landscape during as soon as the temperatures drop. This short term neglect can lead to long term problems. The following are easy lawn and landscape tips which will ensure that your Spring and Summer investments do not go to waste.
The Importance of “Fall Cleanups”
In the Main Line and Philadelphia area the term “Fall Cleanup” refers to removal of leaves and branches throughout the entire property. We are asked on a regular basis, “why do I need to do a leaf removal in the fall, the leaves don’t bother me”. The leaves may be a nice change of scenery in our Philadelphia four season climate, however this scenery can lead to some nasty long term results. Leaves left on the lawn, ground cover, garden beds etc. experience fluctuating temperatures throughout the Fall and Winter which causes rapid decaying and creates a barrier. This barrier leads to a moist, warm and dark environment which is a perfect spot for pests and diseases to live. Lawns that do not have a fall cleanup service performed will surely be paying for it in the spring. Dead grass, pest problems, increase in weeds are just a few of the reasons to prioritize the fall cleanup service!
Fall Hedge Trimming/Pruning
Every plant/shrub is different. Water requirements, bloom and growth span, dormancy vary based on a variety of factors. So is true of hedge trimming and pruning. Every lawn and landscape (and region!) has a variety of plants and shrubs/bushes that have their unique maintenance schedules. This is one major misconception that many landscaping companies mislead the customer to being on a standard schedule which may not be ideal for the health of all parts of your landscape. Late summer and Fall is a great time for 80-90% of native plants and shrubbery to be trimmed/cutback. As much as 80-90% is a lot, some varieties could suffer do to being trimmed at the wrong time. A great example is the genus of Hydrangeas. There are 75 species of Hydrangeas and not all have the same maintenance requirements. Depending on the species of Hydrangea, pruning at an improper time could prevents the plant from blooming the following year! On the flip side, not pruning hydrangeas at all will not take care of the problem. They need to be in a constant state of renewal, so maintenance pruning is needed every year just to keep them vigorous and healthy. New customers frequently ask why their Hydrangea(s) won’t bloom anymore, and 9 times out of 10 it is due to a lack of pruning knowledge by the prior landscaping service.
Cutting Back Perennials and Ornamental Grasses
It may be tempting to cut back the whole flower garden in the fall, even in colder climates, it can be nice to leave some perennials standing throughout winter months. The seeds of some plants will attract and feed the birds, even in the winter. Some plants like the protection their dormant foliage provides for their crowns (Asclepias, Chrysanthemums and Heuchera (Coral Bells) fare best if cleaned up in the spring)
Other perennials do not handle the harsh winters as well. Many look unattractive after the first frost, and have recurrent problems with pests and diseases, which will overwinter in their fallen foliage and surface in the spring. The list of perennial flowers which are best to cut back in the fall is a long one, however the timing of the cutback varies greatly based on the weather (no one can pinpoint when frost and snow will come).
With these lawn and landscaping tips for the Fall (and guidance from the experts!), your lawn and landscape will thrive with proper maintenance and prevent costly repairs down the road. Patkin Landscaping leads the competition with a vast knowledge of proper lawn and landscape maintenance practices to make your curb appeal the envy of the neighborhood! Patkin Landscaping Inc. offers all of these discussed services: Fall Cleanups, Hedge Trimming, Pruning and more. For more information please visit our Landscape Maintenance page.