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How to Put Your Landscape to Bed in the Fall: Our Top Fall Landscaping Tips for Wichita, Kansas

fall yard maintenance

Fall Landscaping Ideas That Homeowners Should Implement Before the First Snow

Fall is an interesting time in terms of landscaping. Property owners are making the transition from summer plantings to fall florals sometime between the last hot days of summer and the onset of the wintry cold. And with numerous holidays lined up, it’s easy to get caught up in jack-o-lanterns, decorative gourds, and holiday lights as you overlook one very important item on your fall landscaping checklist: putting your fall garden to bed.

This essential piece of landscape maintenance ensures your garden will produce and look its best when the growing season ramps up again in the spring. In this guide, we will walk you through the steps to prepare your garden for the winter months ahead.

Tips to Put Your Fall Landscaping to Bed

By following our tips and best practices, you can ensure you have properly put your garden to bed so that it flourishes in the spring.

  • Collect leaves and debris: Leftover crops and debris are one of the major causes of plant diseases. Kick off your landscape maintenance by gathering fallen leaves, twigs, and yard debris from around your yard to put into your compost pile. Only include debris that do not demonstrate signs of mildew or disease. Otherwise, dispose of it like any other garbage. Healthy plant material can also be added to your compost bin for nutrient-rich compost.

  • Mulch post-freeze: When dealing with plant beds, there is always the risk that pests or disease remain within the soil. This can make mulching a risky endeavor, as you may be adding a protective layer that allows pests and diseases to survive.

However, if you wait until the ground freezes, you can safely mulch knowing all pests and diseases are gone. Be sure to use a natural mulch for best results. Fall is an ideal time to collect leaves and brown matter for your compost bin, which can later serve as excellent natural mulch that enriches the soil beneath.

Pro tip: If you want to be absolutely sure about the condition of your soil, you can purchase a soil testing kit at your local hardware or gardening store. For professional advice, contact a landscaping company near you.

  • Annual removal and seed harvest: After the first hard freeze, remove annual plants from your garden beds. You can add them to your compost pile if they are free of disease. Additionally, be sure to harvest the seeds from your plants for future use. Remember, seeds must be separated from their casings (the chaff). To dry them out, simply place them in a cardboard box for up to three weeks.

  • Weed eradication: Fall offers the ideal window to combat weeds in your vegetable garden, flower beds, or lawn. You can either pull the weeds by hand, ensuring you remove the roots, or selectively apply herbicide. Be sure to research your herbicide selection and application method carefully; this mitigates the chance of unintentionally affecting other areas of your fall landscaping. November is the perfect time to use pre-emergent herbicide, which can last up to five months.

  • Fall planting: Some fall landscaping ideas need a few months to pay off. Even though you will not be able to enjoy them immediately, certain spring bulbs like hyacinths, alliums, and tulips require a cold, dormant period before they can bloom. This means fall is the perfect time to get them into the ground. There are also numerous perennials you can check out that are ideal for autumn planting, surviving through winter and bringing texture or color to your outdoor space year-round.

  • Fertilizer: If you’re like most homeowners, you may have some extra lawn fertilizer in the garage. Believe it or not, you can apply fertilizer to your trees and shrubs so long as it doesn’t contain weed killer in it. Of course, the best type of fertilizer is one that is specifically formulated for trees and shrubs.

When to Hire a Professional for Fall Landscaping and Maintenance

Prepping a garden bed and landscaping for a long winter’s nap can pose a challenge if you are not familiar with the process or simply do not have time. If there are too many items on your landscape maintenance checklist, you should explore hiring a professional landscaping company.

Not only can they properly put your garden to bed so that it thrives in the spring, but they can also provide plenty of fall landscaping ideas that align with your seasonal décor. For example, garden paths, landscaping borders, and fire pits are perfect for boosting your yard’s aesthetic appeal in autumn.

Contact a local landscaping company to learn more about fall landscaping and their other services. Once they have a better idea of what your landscaping goals are, they can provide you with a quote and estimated turnaround time on the project.

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