Each new season brings about a unique set of opportunities and constraints in terms of what can or cannot happen NOW as well as what things can help you continuously prepare for the months ahead. Greenleaf would like to take this opportunity to explain tips on how you, as a homeowner or garden enthusiast, can help keep your gardens looking great! It is our hope that this blog will not only help you budget your time playing in the dirt, but will help you plan accordingly when ‘doing it yourself’ isn’t an option. The following information breaks down maintenance season to season, bullet to bullet, in hopes to better prepare anyone who cares about time management, planning other things to do, or how their surrounding environment looks and functions. Since fall is approaching and well, basically here, let’s begin with that.
Fall Gardening Care Tips
As quickly as fall comes, so does it pass. Our beautiful Midwest region is transformed into a painted canvas of magnificence. The weather is not too cold not too hot, while heightened activity can be seen through people, plants, and all the rest changing; a last stand if you will before we hold strong through the winter months. How can you display your fall colors like the plants do? By preparing yourself in the present, for tomorrow is another day:
- Any additions to the garden need to be planted early to allow time for establishment
- Prune shrubs and tie up trees like arborvitaes that could break from heavy winter snows
- Remove unwanted weeds, leaves, and other debris to be re-used as compost
- Deadhead, stake and divide spring and summer blooming perennials to rejuvenate plants
- Observe plants for disease and insect damage
- Monitor plants for water and fertilizer needs
- Add compost and other amendments to your garden to increase nutrients in the soil
- Mulch beds where necessary for winter plant protection
- Conduct a general check of the house and grounds to see if anything was missed and to plan your next garden project
- Kick your feet up and breathe easy!
Winter Gardening Care Tips
Though the winter is slower paced in terms gardening, there are still several things you can make sure to take care of to avoid problems caused by colder weather. While we have previously shared tips on how to allow your plants a fighting chance against Jack Frost, Greenleaf feels it important to restate this information so the roots set deep. This time of year also allows the perfect opportunity to start planning your spring project! Heck, sometimes the only thing that pulls me through some of our bitter cold days is the thought of knowing exactly what I’m going to do once that darn weather breaks.
- If you haven’t already, make sure plants that need to be inside during the winter are put into pots and moved inside to somewhere nice and cozy
- Cover plants with a tarp or blanket if you are worried about their survival
- Did you ever mulch those plants like you said you would?
- Remove water from any fountains or birdbaths
- Cover fountains, furniture, and other site features to help avoid breaking with temperature and moisture extremes
- Disconnect hoses but keep them close so you can water during the warmer winter days
- Ensure containers are empty or soil levels reduced
- Incorporate a winter arrangement in your garden, on the deck, and/or at your front door
- Get a warm blanket, hot chocolate, and a good book because you need a break. You’ve earned it!
Spring Gardening Care Tips
Ahhh, spring is here! A desire begins to slowly resonate within ourselves, one that parallels the changing season and wondrous landscape around us. We feel renewed, just as the plants do. Working to re-establish order, a goal in mind, a solution. Whatever side of the garden you’re on, you begin making preparations for what lies ahead. Whether it be a cleanup and refresh for your existing landscape; water, erosion and drainage projects; or plans to plant that amazing vegetable garden you’ve always wanted to but… “Haven’t gotten to yet,” the time is now, and Greenleaf Garden Services is here to help.
- Assess your garden beds for winter damage
- Deadhead, stake and divide summer and fall blooming perennials to rejuvenate plants
- Prune shrubs and remove unwanted weeds, leaves, and other debris to be re-used as compost
- Trim grasses back to the ground and divide if necessary
- Time to install that garden project you were planning all winter
- Plant those new plants so you can enjoy them throughout the summer
- Address any drainage issues you are having and fix them now rather than later to save yourself time and money
- Include a rain barrel or two off a downspout to help reduce runoff and conserve water
- Time to break! If you haven’t already, go catch a Sporting KC game
Related Read: Picking the Right Plants for Your Garden Beds
Summer Gardening Care Tips
It’s getting hot and humid out there! At least you have been taking care of business and can sit back, relax, and watch your beautiful garden bloom and evolve throughout the summer. While availability to plant during the hotter months is reduced, look to other projects that you have been planning to do but haven’t yet. If you can stand the heat, summer is a perfect time to install that drainage fix you didn’t get around to in the spring, or maybe it’s time to add a new patio, deck, walkway, or landscape lighting to your outdoor environment. Whatever the project may be, there is always something that can be done. Oh yeah, and don’t forget to WATER!
- The most important thing during the summer months is to water…it would be a shame to see all of your hard work go to waste
- Plant those plants you haven’t bought yet! Don’t worry, it isn’t too late
- Prepare the soil and garden beds for fall planting
- Include a rain barrel or two if you haven’t already…yes, I’ll keep saying it again and again