Listen: We get it. Now that the Bucks and Montgomery county area’s Indian Summer has finally given way to the cooler and much more manageable days of autumn, it may seem tempting to pull back a bit on the cleanup and maintenance of your commercial property. After all, autumn leaves are about the only thing cluttering your sidewalks. And before long, the snows of winter will be blanketing your entire grounds.
And yet unfortunately … it’s not quite as simple as all that. Autumn weather, for instance, also means rain, which means piles of slippery leaves. And we probably don’t have to remind you that slip-and-fall accidents are the leading cause of injuries on commercial properties. What’s more, given the forecasts we’re seeing now, winter may be here well before we expect it.
If you’re wondering what you should focus on, maintenance-wise, before the first storm of winter arrives, we’ve got you covered. The following essential autumn cleanup and maintenance tasks should put you in good shape through the end of December.
Would you prefer to have a team of professionals on your side to do the heavy lifting? Our certified, insured, and trained horticulturalists and maintenance staff have more than 25 years of experience. When we say that no detail is too small and no maintenance job too large, we mean it. Don’t wait—give the Realty Landscaping office a call today.
Aerate Your Lawns
If you’re concerned about the dropping fall temperatures leading to brown patches and bare spots in your lawns, aeration is the answer you’re looking for. With the use of a tool known as an aerator, you’ll remove half-inch plugs of turf and soil from your lawn. This will allow the top few inches of your soil to breathe easier; it will also give water and nutrients much easier access to your soil.
Remove Summer Annuals and Prepare for Spring
If you haven’t already removed your summer blooming annuals, now is the time. If you or someone on your staff is the green thumb type, you might also want to start thinking about the sort of bulbs you’ll be planting come spring. Your property will definitely experience a bit of extra attention if yours is one of the first in the area to sprout spring flowers once the winter ends.
Planting Mums and other Fall Flowers
Winter, of course, isn’t here quite yet. Technically, we still have nearly two months of autumn to enjoy, so why not brighten up your commercial landscape with some seasonal plants and flowers? Fall mums, formerly known as Chrysanthemums, are perhaps the season’s most ubiquitous flower. They’re also affordable and easy to find, and they work well when creating borders, as well as for mass plantings.
Aside from mums, deciding on a selection of the best fall-blooming annuals and perennials has a lot to do with where in the country you live, so a little research couldn’t hurt. Pansies, however, tend to do well almost everywhere. And if you’d like to mix other seasonal annuals and perennials in with your mums, looks for choices like ornamental kale or cabbage, autumn sage, and moss verbena.
Winterize Your Sprinkler Systems
In Bucks and Montgomery counties—and indeed, throughout much of the Northeastern States—temperatures are expected to drop so low this winter that your ground’s frost level may actually be deeper than your irrigation piping. Burst pipes are probably not something you want to be dealing with in any season, although unfortunately, draining the water from your sprinkler system may not be quite enough. In most instances, an irrigation technician with extensive sprinkler system experience will need to drain your pipes for you.
Winterizing Beds and Grass
The process of winterizing your lawns is an important one, and it starts, believe it or not, with raking leaves. Applying fertilizer in the mid-to-late fall is also wise, as it gives your grass the energy it needs to survive a tough winter. (Planning your fertilizing in conjunction with your aeration, by the way, is also a good idea.)
If annual beds are present on your property’s landscape, you’ll definitely want to protect them from the harshness of winter. If you have an especially large bed that needs to be protected, that can be accomplished by planting a cover crop. Applying mulch, however, is a much more effective method for smaller beds.
Add all of these tasks together, along with other can’t-skip fall duties such as an end-of-the-season pruning of your landscape’s plants, and you’ve definitely got your work cut out for you. Not that you have much choice in the matter: Unless you want the time and money you’ve invested in your property’s landscape to have disappeared by the winter’s end, you’ll have to take the necessary steps to protect your living landscape from Mother Nature.
Your other option? Give Realty Landscaping a call. Our team includes professionals trained in landscape maintenance, project design and management, and the horticultural arts. In fact, we’ve even been included on Landscape Management magazine’s elite list of the 150 largest landscape contractors. We look forward to hearing from you.