“I cannot endure to waste anything so precious as autumnal sunshine by staying in the house.”
[Notebook, Oct. 10, 1842]”
Isn’t Fall in Seattle a beautiful time of year? Sure, it’s getting dark too early and it’s raining whenever you want to take a walk, but the air is so crisp and the colors are so vibrant. Fall is nature’s last hurrah before Winter. Fall is also your last chance to give your landscape some care that it will surely reciprocate with beauty next Spring.
In the Pacific Northwest our lawns are composed of primarily cool season grasses, therefore they are growing the most during the Spring and Fall months, and not so much during the summer. Because of this, Fall is a very important time to maintain and improve the health of your lawn. In addition to fertilizing, Fall is an ideal time to aerate as well as over-seed stressed and tired lawns. This time of year is also great for installing new sod. The attention you provide your lawn in Fall will result in a much healthier lawn next Spring.
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Did You Know?
Fall is the best season to rehabilitate a stressed-out lawn!
General Maintenance & Mulching
In addition to revitalizing your lawn, there are some other fundamental tasks that should be performed in your garden every Fall. Your planting beds should be given some final attention to bridge them until Spring, when you will want them bursting back to life to remind you why you still live in Seattle.
The last of those pesky weeds need to be removed. Same goes for those expired annuals and your perennials should be cut back. If you are a fan of bursting colors in Spring, you need to get those bulbs in the ground before it freezes.
The plants in our Northwest landscapes will now be slowing down significantly or entering dormancy. Fall is a great time to tidy things up so you can enjoy a clean landscape throughout winter and not be burdened with doing these tasks in the spring, racing against Mother Nature when she programs everything to burst back to life.
Once your beds are cleared of debris it is strongly recommended to add a layer of mulch. Mulching your beds will not only look great, but it will insulate them against harsh winter temperatures. Mulching is also the best way to improve the health of your soils; the addition of organic compost builds soils and contributes to improved overall soil health, as opposed to fertilizers that simply boost a few elements. Healthier soils will produce healthier plants.