5 tips to keep your yard healthy this fall

Raking leaves can be a fun family activity, and good exercise, too. (Getty Images)
Raking leaves can be a fun family activity, and good exercise, too. (Getty Images)

A beautiful lawn can be the foundation to a happy, healthier life and lead to spending more time outdoors.

In fact, 86 percent of Americans consider their lawn important to their home and life.

"A healthy lawn encourages you to live life outside more with your family, friends and neighbors," says Dr. Kirk Hurto, TruGreen's chief science officer. "There's no time like late summer and early fall to start preparing your yard for those spring and summertime outdoor gatherings."

While a recent survey conducted by TruGreen showed that seven out of 10 Americans believe themselves to be knowledgeable about the health of their yard, lawn care experts offer these helpful reminders to get your yard ready for fall:

Aerating

Aeration involves removal of soil cores to improve water and air movement in compacted soils, and aids in promoting deeper and more root growth and thatch management.

Long term, your grass will respond quicker to fertilizer and water runoff will be reduced when irrigating or sprinkling your lawn.  

Overseeding

When it comes to increasing grass thickness and health, overseeding can be essential.

It can help discourage future weeds while also aiding recovery from summer heat, disease and insect activity.

Seeding during late summer or early fall will give grass the maximum time to develop a deep extensive root system and mature before the onset of winter stresses.

Aeration is recommended when overseeding to give seeds more soil contact and provide a moist, protected environment required for germination.

Feeding

Fall feeding gives your landscape the nutrients needed to prepare for a healthy, green spring revival.

Hiring a trained specialist with a plan customized to your region will help trees and shrubs thrive.

If you fertilize your own lawn, make sure to follow the product directions and sweep all fertilizer that may reach pavement back onto your lawn.

Maintaining health and appearance

Throughout the fall, there are things you can do to maintain your yard's appearance and health, including removing fallen tree leaves and debris from your lawn.

Studies have shown mulching tree leaves back into your lawn effectively clears away tree leaf debris that otherwise can become matted and damage your lawn over the winter.

Lowering the mower blade height by one or two settings the last couple mowings before winter reduces grass diseases associated with snow.

Avoid walking on frost-covered lawns as doing so may cause brown footprints to appear later that can remain visible until spring. And clean and edge landscape beds, leaving no more than 2-3 inches of mulch in the beds.

Pruning

Pruning is an essential maintenance practice for trees and shrubs. Landscapes can quickly become overgrown if not cared for, but yearly pruning will maintain trees and shrubs to an ideal size and shape.

Remove dead or damaged branches from trees and shrubs to prevent rot organisms from invading the trunk and stems of plants.

(Family Features)

 

 

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