Happy Fall Y’all! It’s so nice that not only have we officially turned the page from summer to fall, but that we’re actually starting to feel the refreshing autumn air…at least here in Atlanta. Sigh…
And not only that, it’s the perfect time to do quite a few things in your yard so that you can enjoy it more now…and when spring returns. So with that, I thought that I’d provide you with a list of 5 things you can do to help get you on your way.
1. Take Care of Your Cool Season GrassesIf you have cool season grass like I do (e.g., fescue, ryegrass, bluegrass, etc.), now’s the time that you really need to take those extra measures to ensure a beautiful lawn. And when I say extra measures, I mean those things beyond what most of us think of as the basics…like watering, mowing, and fertilizing. Check out this link where I provide you a little goody on pH levels, aeration, and overseeding.
2. Freshin’ Up Your Container Gardens
Some people think that container gardens are really only to be enjoyed during the spring and summer months. But that couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, given that not much else is going on in other areas of your yard, I think that container gardens play an even more critical role in bringing life to those otherwise lifeless spaces…well at least in the fall.
So check out this post I did with container garden guru Helen Weis last year on Tips for Fall Container Gardening…as well as this post where I made a few suggestions on what flowers you could use in your container gardens.
3. Get Some Plants in the Ground
Fall is the perfect time to install plants. The cool air (i.e., not harsh) and warm ground temps this time of year provide the perfect environment for your plants to become established by the time spring and summer rolls around. Check out this post from my friend Joe Lamp’l from Growing a Greener World®, where he provides 7 steps to ensure that you plant your plants just right.
4. Transplant Trees & Shrubs
For the same reasons mentioned above, fall is a great time to transplant trees and shrubs that have outgrown their spaces…or those you just want moved for whatever reason. But don’t do it willy-nilly. Being ripped out of the ground and placed somewhere else is not easy on a plant (and some plant plants won’t survive the move at all). So you need to make sure to keep a few things in mind during the transplantation process. Here’s a very informative video from our friends over at Oklahoma Gardening (from Oklahoma State University).
Now beware…there are some plants that typically don’t like being transplanted at all. For instance: larger trees with thick trunks (> 6 or so inches); taller established shrubs (e.g., Pittosporum, alders, bottle brush); Daphne; rosemary and lavender. On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve found azaleas, hollies, leatherleaf Mahonia, and hydrangeas transplant incredibly well. So have at it!
5. Divide and Conquer Your Perennials
While you’re moving things around, fall is also a great time to divide your perennials. Being able to divide my perennials and spread them throughout my outdoor spaces…and share them with friends and family, is one of the reasons why I have so many in my yard (i.e., I don’t have to buy them!).
This weekend I’m going to go to town on my ferns, hostas, astilbe, peonies, Lenton roses, and ornamental grasses. And if I had any lilies, veronica, phlox, sedum, coneflowers, or Irises…I’d divide them now too.
For you sensitive types, you’re going to have to let go a little bit…because you’ll feel like you may be killing your beloved plants. But trust me, you won’t…well, as long as you follow a few simple steps. Check out this helpful tutorial from HostasDirect. You’ll see that it’s actually quite easy…and painless.
So there you have it! These 5 fall gardening to-do’s should keep you busy this weekend…if not the next several weekends.
Happy Gardening Friends,
[For those of you who visit RYGblog more often, I apologize for not publishing any posts during the month of September. We started out the month redeeming a little family time on vacation in Wyoming with my dad and his wife. We had an incredible time hiking, fishing, horseback riding, 4-wheeling and just hanging out. Unfortunately, the month ended on a sour note…with me suffering from a kidney stone, which required surgery. In one G-rated word…OUCH!!!
If you’d care to see some pics of our September adventures, feel free to check our respective Instagram accounts: Britt, Doug, RYGblog. Regardless, thanks for your patience and hanging in there with us! I look forward to seeing what October will bring.]