The changing of the seasons can be a beautiful and exciting time for farmers and gardeners, but it also poses a multitude of challenges that require a variety of yard maintenance tips.
As winter thaws into spring, spring heats up into summer, summer cools into fall, and fall freezes into winter, there are a number of measures that need to be taken with your lawn care equipment. We recommend the following yard maintenance tips to ensure your plants stay healthy in every season.
Spring: Spring is the time the soil thaws, buds begin to appear, and it’s time to work.
- For lawn care check that the thatch level is not deeper than 1 in.
- Aerate if the thatch layer is deeper than 1 in to open your soil to air, water, and nutrients.
- Spread fertilizer after aeration to feed your soil.
- Be sure to eliminate as many weeds as possible at the root, in both your lawn and garden.
- Water both grass and plants for extended periods of time infrequently rather than for short times frequently so that the roots absorb the moisture.
Summer: Once the heat of summer sets in, most of your plants will likely already be in bloom and your job is to maintain their health through high temperatures and dry spouts.
- Develop a routine of watering; we recommend about ¼ to ½ and inch of water once every two weeks.
- Keep your mower blade setting on the second highest to keep grass long enough to prevent it from burning in the hot sun.
- Any potted plants in your yard should be watered daily.
- Some plants and grasses may require periodic feeding (i.e. fertilizer) during the summer to meet their needs; most experts recommend waiting to fertilize until temperatures are relatively cool.
Fall: The cooler temperatures of fall provide the perfect opportunity to reseed areas of your yard that may have browned during the summer. This is also the time when planters should prepare their yards for the coming winter.
- Prune and cut off any dead parts of your yard plants to allow for new blossoms to come through.
- Adjust your mower back to a height of 2 in. off the ground; a shorter lawn won’t be matted down as easily by leaves and snow.
- Check the thatch level again and aerate if necessary.
- Apply a thin layer of soil to act as compost that will continue to feed the plants during the winter.
- Rake and remove leaves from grass and garden beds so your plants are not smothered.
Winter: In areas that experience snowfall during the winter months, your lawn and plants will most likely spend the season in a relatively dormant state. Since you will have limited access to your yard’s lawn and plants, it’s essential that you make the recommended preparations in the warmer months.
- Try to keep any foot or vehicle traffic off your lawn in winter months; heavily worn grass areas will be slower to recover in the spring.
- Cover plants and areas of your garden with small shelters to protect them from the weight of snow.
- Bring all pots and lawn furniture indoors to prevent rusting and cracking.
- If you receive heavy snowfall, we suggest that you brush off branches and bushes to keep the snow from weighing them down.
By sticking to these yard maintenance tips, we are confident that your lawn, garden, and landscaping efforts will be preserved in difficult months and flourish during more hospitable months. If you have any further advice on how to maintain a healthy yard year round we would love to hear your input.
If you enjoyed this post read more like it on our Facebook page!
All images courtesy of Deere.com