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Fall Landscaping Don’ts




Fall landscaping is the best time of year for maintaining your grounds, preparing plants for the winter, and completing new design projects. However, there are some “don’ts” to remember. The main one is to not wait too long to start work on your design projects. You will want to take care of your plants and trees well in advance of winter to protect them from harsh conditions. In addition, do not let the weather get too hot or too cold to get started on your fall landscaping projects.

Plant hardier plants

Fall is the perfect time to plant perennials and evergreen shrubs, especially those that can withstand cooler temperatures. It is also the time of year when rainfall is plentiful, giving these plants plenty of time to develop roots and prepare for the winter. The ideal time to plant a perennial is before the ground freezes, typically before mid-November in most parts of the country. Make sure you plant hardy plants in full or part sun, and choose perennials that are hardy to your USDA planting zone.

For shaded areas, consider planting Daylilies, which are perennials that are hardy to zones 3 and 4. They are remarkably versatile, and require little care. They bloom repeatedly in shades of blue, white and pale pink. Unlike many other perennials, daylilies can tolerate high temperatures and neglect. In addition, many varieties have reblooming characteristics, so you don’t have to worry about deadheading them. One of the best-known varieties is ‘Stella de Oro’.

For full sun or part shade conditions, plant peonies. These are deer-resistant and attract butterflies. In addition, they are suitable for zones four to eight. These plants also tolerate a range of soil conditions. They should be planted in the fall in a sunny location, but don’t dig them too deeply.

If your garden is prone to drought, consider planting coreopsis. This perennial is drought-tolerant and can be planted in a wide variety of climates. It will grow in a shady or dry area and will bloom through the fall and into early spring. It is also a great choice for pots. Mexican bush sage is another perennial that can tolerate a dry climate. Its long blooming season attracts butterflies and birds.

Another hardy perennial that provides color throughout the seasons is the Eastern Wahoo bush. This native shrub is invasive-free and produces bold bursts of color during the spring and fall. In addition to its beauty, this plant will keep deer and rabbits from eating other flowers.

Install new plant material

Fall is an ideal time to install new plant material in your landscape. The cooler temperatures and increased rainfall will help the roots develop and prevent transplant shock. This will give your new plants the most time possible to grow. Additionally, the cooler temperatures will encourage growth of your flowers, shrubs, and trees.

Regardless of the season, evergreen plants are a great choice for fall landscaping. Not only will they remain beautiful throughout the fall, but they require little maintenance. They also add color to your landscape. In addition, the last half of the summer was very hot and dry, which can lead to damaged or dead plants.

Autumn is also an excellent time to complete landscaping projects. The cooler temperatures and moisture help new plants establish, while the decreased temperature is ideal for lawns. Fall rain also reveals any areas where water tends to pool. Also, you will want to prepare your irrigation system for the upcoming winter months. This way, you won’t have to deal with issues of water pooling in certain areas. Lastly, if you are planning on planting new plants, it’s best to start early.

Protect plants from harsh winter weather

Protecting your plants from harsh winter weather is a key part of fall landscaping. To ensure your plants survive the cold, be sure to check them for pests and diseases. Plants that have recently suffered from disease, insect or nematode damage are especially vulnerable to cold damage. Cold weather also damages the roots of plants, so it is essential to protect them with mulch.

Winter weather is often unpredictable, and it can be damaging to your landscape plants. Whether you live in the northern or southern states, abrupt changes in temperature can ruin your landscaping. Here are some easy steps you can take to protect your plants:. If temperatures are forecasted to drop to freezing, check with your local weather station for frost advisories and freeze warnings. The warnings indicate that your plants may suffer from light or moderate freezes, while a hard freeze can cause heavy damage to most plants.

Frost can kill your plants, so make sure you prepare for it. The first frost of the season typically occurs on clear, calm nights. Light frost kills tender plants, while a moderate freeze kills most of your vegetation. Luckily, if your area does receive a heavy frost, it will be milder in a few days.

It’s also a good idea to protect potted plants from frost. You can wrap them with old bedsheets, blankets, and large towels. You can also raise pots off the ground to keep them from sitting in icy puddles. A horticultural fleece (or frost blanket) is another good choice for frost protection. Covers that are made of woven fabric are better than plastic.

In addition to covering potted plants and container gardens, protect your vegetable garden from frost by bringing them indoors. Even if they are relatively hardy, temperatures in the teens will still damage them. And even moderate winds can cause damage to plants that are not protected. A sheltered space like a garden shed or garage may be sufficient.

A south-facing slope is ideal for planting tender plants. It offers greater exposure to the Sun and helps to drain cold air. Some deep valleys can have nighttime temperatures as low as 18 deg F lower than surrounding hills.

Add seasonal flair to your yard

In the fall and winter, you can add colorful plants and trees to your yard. The plants that you select should be suitable for your climate and will complement the rest of the yard’s decor. You can also use these plants as borders for your outdoor areas, like your porch, patio, and garden.

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