preparing landscape for winter

In preparation for the forthcoming fall season it is important that we prepare. Preparation requires us to take a close look at all fundamental aspects of our landscape. Flowers & mulch take the lead as they are the most effective at punching up our curb appeal.

Mulch serves to provide three primary benefits. Aesthetic improvement, moisture retention and reduction of weed growth. The thickness of the mulch applied is very important. If no mulch is present the industry standard is a static 2”-3” thick layer of mulch. Once you have a mulch base, a supplemental installation of 2” once or twice per year shall suffice.

Annual flower plantings can do more to punch up our curb appeal than any other single enhancement we can provide. Proper color selection, design and strategic placement of color beds must also be considered. Entrance features to communities and all amenity areas should take precedence when planning your design strategy. For large format color beds solids or two color combos create the most effective impact. Remember too, soil amendment and fertilization is ‘essential’ to get the most out your color program. Failure to amend and fertilize color beds will result in unwelcomed poor performance and subsequent losses.

We must give consideration to the balance of our landscape. This is a great time to trim, prune and adjust our landscape beds to ensure our intended design maintains integrity. While doing so, we should also take time to identify any deficient areas that may require filling in with additional shrubs or groundcover. Filling in all deficient areas is always recommended prior to the fall mulching. Ideally, forecasting annual landscape replacement budgets will help a great deal when planning this effort.

In preparation for the forthcoming winter season, fertilization should be prioritized. This supplemental feeding will boost your landscapes immune system and naturally boost color & vigor. While not a guarantee against possible frost damage, it will aid to minimize both initial damage and improve recovery time.

Fundamentally, the transition from Spring/Summer season to our Fall/Winter season can bring some welcomed changes. We will begin to see some dramatic changes. Days shall become both shorter & cooler. Therefore, all aspects of plant growth shall slow down. Additionally, rainfall shall also diminish providing a welcomed decline in plant pest and disease issues.

In summation, take time to review your fall preparation plan so you may continue to enjoy great curb appeal.