One of my favorite times of the year is the transition from summer to fall. The cool, brisk breeze combined with the beautiful colors of nature always makes my heart skip a beat. However, one thing about the transition that I don’t look forward to is the challenge of keeping my yard in good shape among the piles of leaves that fall. Below are a few helpful fall lawn maintenance tips that have helped me manage my outdoor space in an eco-friendly manner.
5 Fall Lawn Maintenance Tips For Eco Lovers
Fall Lawn Mowing Height
Lawns don’t need frequent mowing in the fall, but when you do mow, be sure to set your blades on the highest setting so that the grass will shade the weeds, hiding them from the sun. Also, when you mow, ditch the bag. This is one of the key fall lawn maintenance tips both for the health of your grass and as an important eco tip. Leave your lawn clippings scattered throughout your yard so they will act as a natural fertilizer and reduce water evaporation from the soil.
Fall Lawn Fertilizer Tips
Fertilizing your lawn during the fall is very important as it prepares it for the winter months ahead. If you have a lot of clover growing in your yard, it suggests you may have poor soil that is in need of some enrichment. To help enrich the soil and increase its microbial content, try sprinkling compost over your yard.
Overseeding Lawn In Fall
Fall is one of the best times of year to plant grass seed and the practice of overseeding is planting on top of your existing lawn. If you have a lot of shade in your yard, you probably have some bare spots to fill and can thicken your lawn with overseeding. Try using a low maintenance grass seed that is drought tolerant. This is another of the fall lawn maintenance tips that is not only great for your yard health but for going easy on the environment as these low maintenance seeds require less water and fertilizer. The best time to overseed is about 45 days before your first fall frost to give your grass a chance to get established.
Fall Lawn Watering Times
Usually the fall will have less evaporation so you can often cut back on your lawn watering during the autumn season. However, if you are overseeding, the new seeds will need consistent watering in order to germinate and get established for at least a couple of weeks. The best lawn watering times for lawns in the fall are in the morning. This way you will save water because you don’t have to contend with high evaporation during the heat of the day and you don’t leave wetness on your grass before evening that could result in mold.
Fall Lawn Care Tips For Dealing With Leaves
If you get a sizable amount of leaves in your yard during the fall season, it is important to address them as soon as possible. A pile up of leaves can smother your grass and cause the turf to rot. There are multiple ways to handle the abundance of leaves that pile up in your yard this time of year. Below are just a couple of options for you to consider when it comes to leaf fall lawn care tips.
- Mulch: Use your leaves as free mulch to cover bare ground areas, such as those around the base of trees, unplanted beds and under bushes. As leaves break down, they help to enrich soil and can also be used to protect roots from hard frosts and prevent weed growth. After my husband rakes them on to the base of the trees, he sometimes waters the leaves if they are very dry to weigh them down and keep them from blowing away.
- Compost: Turn your leaves into nice, rich compost for the spring! Simply gather a pile of leaves together, water them (damp leaves will decompose much faster) and watch them biodegrade come springtime. Use wire fencing to hold the leaves as they decompose. Ask your children to help rake and sort the leaves into piles. Then, to help condense the leaves down and make room for more, ask them to jump on the piles and watch their faces light up with joy!
- Mow: If you only get a small spattering of leaves, consider mowing them along with your grass. The chopped leaves will break down into compost and serve well for mulch use too.
Although keeping up with your outdoor space can be intimating (especially during the fall season!) there are plenty of quick and easy options to help you maintain your yard.
What do you do to keep your yard in tip-top shape for the fall? Which of these fall lawn maintenance tips was most useful to you? I’d love to hear your recommendations and thoughts in the comments section below or on social media @familyfocusblog!