Fall is in the air and while we’re enjoying curling up on the couch to watch football, it’s also a great time to be outdoors. When it comes to your landscape, fall is a great time to do more than just rake your leaves. Planting in cooler weather allows for good root growth (roots grow best in cool soil) with a lower amount of water than what is necessary to nurture the same plants through spring and summer. And the key to healthy plants is good roots! Because of this, fall is a great time to plant trees and shrubs.
With this in mind, Tilly’s designers put together some garden “to do’s” before the first frost arrives – if it hasn’t already! These tips will make sure your yard looks manicured this fall and is in great health for next spring.
- Plant bulbs! Invest in your springtime garden now! As soon at the weather stays reliably chilly it’s time to think about planting bulbs. One thing to keep in mind – bulbs are WAY more forgiving than we all think. You can dig a hole, throw a handful of daffodils in, and cover them up… no need to worry about their spacing or directionality. They will come up and look like a lovely little natural grouping.
- Dig and divide perennials that have gotten too big. We posted this fabulous article the other day that gives a great overview of how to do this!
- Transplant perennials and even shrubs that no longer fit in their location. Fall is a great time to give them a new home to thrive in.
- Transplant groundcover to fill in gaps in your coverage – take it from a back-of-the-border or less conspicuous location and fill in that bare spot by your front door! This will ensure a cohesive look.
- Heel in any plants you purchased that haven’t yet found their forever home. If you leave them out of the ground in their pots the roots will likely freeze and they will struggle to come back in the spring. Get them in the ground now before it’s too late.
- Mulch tender perennials and roses to help them better survive the winter. Mulch is like a winter coat for these plants and will protect them from the bitter cold, giving them the best chance year round.
- Remove pesky perennial weeds (think poke weed, thistle, and knot weed) to get a jump on spring maintenance.
- Dig compost into your beds for a nutritional jumpstart in spring!
- Avoid planting evergreens (especially broadleaf evergreens like rhododendron and holly) too late in the fall as they are more susceptible to drying out.
Fall is also a great time to start thinking about any landscaping changes you may want to make in the spring. Planning a project takes time. Even if you use Tilly’s speedy service it still takes time to review the existing landscape, design improvements, and price the project. Starting in the fall or winter will give you enough time to plan comfortably and hit the ground running in the spring. You will also be able to coordinate an install (through Tilly or another company) before they are overwhelmed with projects and have spring fever!