The fall season is here, meaning the changing colors and falling leaves. Fall is a beautiful and majestic time, but it also means greater effort and activity to keep your yard clean and presentable. Cleaning yards is a simple task and can be made extra quick and effective with these tips and tricks.

  1. Make Sure Your Yard is Free of Debris

It can be nice to look at fallen leaves as they pile onto your yard, but you should always be sure to clean leaves frequently during the fall months. It can be tempting to leave big, beautiful piles under trees and in your yard, but these can have long-lasting and unforeseen effects on your home and yard. For example, leave piles and other debris like felled branches make great homes for pests of all sorts, like fleas and other insects.

These critters also love to root themselves within flowerbeds, especially rose beds, because the foliage of these plants acts as a home for the disease. Over the winter, bugs and other insects love to nestle in mounds of dead leaves and other plant life, so be sure to remove all the debris you can see when the fall months come.

" Regular yard care is required to help maintain your lawn and ensure it can bounce back from things like bad weather conditions, weeds and infestations of insects and diseases. "

- glad.com

  1. Maintain and Clean Your Vegetable Garden

Once fall hits, the final harvest is upon you. Take advantage of this time by removing your vegetables for the last time then removing debris and cleaning your garden. Unbeknownst to many, an additional layer of compost before the winter can help with new growth and foster health for plants to grow in the spring and summer seasons. Additionally, composting can keep your soil from degradation and other negative effects of the winter weather, such as freezes and reduced sunlight.

Bellingham Vegetable Garden Landscaping
 
  1. Take Care of All Branches

Fall is often when branches start to wither and die. These should be handled immediately to insure your house and cars are safe from falling damage. Many branches thrive during the summer and don’t need to be worried about, but it’s a different game in the winter. Branches should be pruned back to discourage overgrowth and an unhealthy weight. Additionally, the vibrancy and overall health of your branches will be improved by maintaining proper care of your trees, including pruning, proper watering, and composting if need be.

Worker Hauling Branches 1
 
  1. Ensure Your Gutters are Safe

Gutters are an overlooked but highly important piece of the yard safety process. Debris can pile up quickly and easily in your gutters, causing damage from additional and unnecessary weight. This weight, in turn, can cause damage to your gutters even the structural integrity of your roof.

In addition, you should never purchase gutter guards, as these usually mean additional costs in both cleaning and maintaining your gutters. Give your gutters a thorough clean to remove all debris and ensure there are no blockages stopping rain or other water sources from cleanly exiting your roof and transferring to the ground.

" When gutters and downspouts become clogged with debris, the water doesn’t magically go away. Instead, it can stay in place, eventually causing the gutters to sag or even detach from the house. Overflowing water causes trouble as well. "

- whatcompressurewashers.com

  1. Dry Your Equipment

Most don’t think twice about leaving their wet or water-based equipment out over the duration of winter, but this can be a costly mistake. Rainwater and internal moisture in these pieces of equipment can cause damage, as ice can cause stretching and cracking, and overall degradation.

To ensure your equipment is safe from the ravages of ice and other harsh elements during the winter, you should take care to dry out hoses, fountains, and drip irrigation systems. Once you’ve ensured your equipment is dried out, you should store the equipment in a dry place, safe from the elements, and untouched by the ravages of winter.

" Mowers are replaced every six years, on average, according to the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute, an industry trade group. But yours can last much longer than that with the right care. "

- consumerreports.com

  1. Aeration is Crucial

Aeration, breaking up the soil to prevent water from pooling, is a great way to avoid costly disasters at your house during the winter months. Aeration also provides key nutrients to your plants which will reach all the way down to the roots during the winter.

This process increases the likelihood that your plants will stay alive and be ready to thrive during the spring and summer months. Performing aeration doesn’t take any fancy or expensive equipment; rather, all you’ll need is a garden fork for small yards or a walk-behind aerator for larger yards. These should be available for rent from retail stores and online for a modest price.

" Almost all lawns will benefit from aeration, and a great lawn demands it. "

- www.ag.ndsu.edu

  1. Give Your Lawn Life-Sustaining Nutrients

The key to having a yard that you can tend to and admire when winter is over is to feed it during the fall and winter months. Providing your lawn with essential nutrients is a great way to keep it healthy and long-lasting during your lifetime. The best fertilizers will contain a high amount of phosphorous which aids root growth and which will make your lawn lush, soft, and green in the spring.

Additionally, it’s always a great idea to rake your lawn early and often, as fallen leaves can easily suffocate your grass. As you rake, you can also mulch your plants and flower beds with the shredded leaf particles. You can even buy a mulching lawn mower for the most effective and quickest results imaginable.

" There are only three letters you need to know to have a high-quality lawn: NPK. These three letters represent the three main macronutrients for lawn care, Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K). "

- simplelawnsolutions.com

  1. Mow One Last Time, for Safety

The great part about a winter lawn is never having to mow, but you should ensure your soil dries out quickly in the spring. To do this, set your mower to its lowest setting and give your lawn one more fresh, close buzz before winter arrives. Enjoy the feeling of the crisp air as you mow one final time before the cold fall air officially kicks in.

Once finished with this, you can start protecting your plants which may be more sensitive to the cold environment. Perennials, shrubs, and roses can’t survive well in the winter, so do everything in your power to keep them safe. Add mulch to the base of the plants and wrap them in cloth barriers to help prevent freezing. The amount of wrapping should be determined by how hardy your plants are to the cold; plants that are more sensitive should be wrapped in multiple blankets, but tough plants will only require one.

Bellingham Lawn Mowing & Maintenance
 
  1. Protect Your Deck and Tools

Finally, the last steps you should take to ensure a smooth and safe transition through winter and into summer is to cover your deck and make sure your tools have been safely stored away. Mold and mildew can grow rapidly during the winter months, but they can be easily prevented with a good power washing on your deck.

A nice weatherproofing stain will ensure cleanliness through the winter and into the spring. You should also clean your gardening tools, rather than simply throwing them into the shed and forgetting them until the spring. A nice, thorough wash will prevent rust and keep them durable for longer.

The fall and winter months can be a nice break from the weekly routine of maintaining your garden, but there are a few steps you should take to ensure a safe and clean environment for the spring to arrive. Wash and clean your tools, prune your dying trees, and make sure your lawn is cut and cleaned of any debris which could harbor pests and suffocate your leaves.

Hire A Professional To Do Your Whatcom County Yard Cleanup

You don't have to take on all of the above tasks yourself! Puget Construction & Landspace can keep your lawn looking great throughout the whole year!

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The Pacific Northwest is known for its beautiful and lush greenery, and, quite contrarily, for its fairly heavy rains. This wet weather can be attractive to any homeowner maintaining a lawn or a garden, specifically because it is a natural and free method of watering your plants. This begs the question: are sprinkler systems still worth it if you live in the Pacific Northwest?

In order to shed some light on this matter, we have to go through the benefits of installing a sprinkler system in your lot:

A sprinkler system will cover for your non-rainy days.

Surely the amount of rainfall in Pacific Northwest areas such as Bellingham, WA, and Whatcom County may seem sufficient during seasons with high precipitation, however, these areas also experience droughts of a similar degree in the summer. Contrary to popular belief, the many inches of rainfall per year experienced by these areas are not spread across the whole year, causing rain to fall heavily for some months while leaving the rest quite dry. A sprinkler system will definitely cover for the days that are too hot to handle.

Setting up a sprinkler system saves you time.

The amount of effort it takes to water your plants is, of course, directly proportional to the size of your lawn or garden. Big or small, however, watering your plants is serious business-- and sometimes, it can take up too much time you should be using for something else. An automatic sprinkler system’s job is to keep your plants thoroughly watered-- while you reap the benefits of spending your time wisely elsewhere.

Your lawn and plants are watered properly.

Plants require a specific amount of water-- they cannot be underwatered or overwatered. Relying solely on rainfall can risk either outcome, which is why automated sprinkler systems can help you manage the water your plants absorb for the day.

Wilted plants cost money and effort to replace, so it’s best to take the proper measures in caring for them. Sprinkler systems are built to help you be in control of the amount of water you give your plants, and of the frequency that they are watered. These two factors also heavily determine the potential overwatering or underwatering of your plants, which is why keeping them in check is important. Of course, with sprinkler systems, you will not have to be on your toes about reminders and schedules all the time.

Your water bill is controlled.

Since the amount of water in an automatic sprinkler system is controlled, you know exactly how much water you spend-- in terms of volume and cash-- in contrast to manual sprinkler systems that have to rely on your memory and other factors.

Your property value increases.

If you are the type of homeowner who wants to invest in your property, sprinkler systems are perfect for you. They are guaranteed to keep your lawns lush and green, a huge plus to neighbors and buyers alike.

" ut everyone wants green grass, so adding a sprinkler system that automatically turns on and off is a good investment, says Ferstl, because it allows a buyer to keep a lawn looking good without much work. "

- lifehacker.com

Sprinkler System Are Worth It Even In The Northwest

So are sprinkler systems still worth it if you live in the Whatcom County & The Pacific Northwest?

The answer is, simply: yes.

Whether you are a detail-oriented busybody or a homeowner with a green thumb, you will definitely want to keep your lawns and gardens in tip-top shape during the whole course of the year-- which is always easier said than done. Relying on nature to run its course, especially in the very rainy northwest, is a good idea in theory. But to guarantee the effortless good health and proper maintenance of your gardens, sprinkler systems are undoubtedly the key.

If you are planning to set up a sprinkler system in your lot, make sure to contact a professional. Puget Construction & Landscape can design and build a sprinkler system to keep your grass and garden healthy.

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There is no denying a well-maintained landscape adds curb appeal to a property. The value, though, goes beyond how your home or commercial property looks.

There are intangible benefits

 

It improves our mood and attitude

Many of us have great memories associated with time in nature as kids. It may have been playing in the sand and water at the beach, walks in the woods, or hikes in the mountains. Regardless of memory, we like being in nature. Citing a study isn’t necessary to know humans like nature, and need it. It makes us feel good, especially when our days are spent inside behind computer screens, desks, or machines.

In the Pacific Northwest, our winter months are described as dark, dreary, depressing. Once the sun returns and the rains taper off, we’re outside in nature. Why? The sun, the colors, the birds chirping - all of it - feels good.

A well-maintained landscape at your home or office, and it doesn’t matter if you have a professionally designed and planted space, if it’s all natural or something in between, will improve how your mood.

That feeling doesn’t apply to you alone.

It makes OTHERS feel good too

A well-manicured and maintained landscape makes your home more inviting to others. It is more attractive and others feel welcome. The same impact it has on you, it has on others. Walking past green grass, trimmed shrubs, and clean planting or flower beds will have a positive effect on visitors.

For commercial property owners, others feeling good translates to more productive workers and happier. Both have a significant positive impact on your bottom line - far greater than the cost of maintaining your property.

It improves the environment

Landscaping, when properly maintained, helps with erosion control and water run-off. Plants, trees, and flowers provide food sources for bees and other insects, they provide homes for birds and other critters and clean our air.

It reduces crime

Studies exist to show that landscape design and the maintenance of landscaped areas decrease crime. It makes sense. Maintenance indicates people care, are active, and alert in the area..

“..signaling to criminals the presence of social capital and the active involvement of neighbors in community spaces; and more appealing landscaping draws more “eyes on the street,” which in turn deters criminals.”

~ The relationship between residential yard management and neighborhood crime: An analysis from Baltimore City and County

With landscape care and maintenance having the benefits, they do, the question isn’t whether it should be done, but rather by whom.

DIY or Professional

Doing it yourself or hiring a neighbor may sound like a less expensive option, though it may cost you much more down the road.

In addition, there is the ‘human’ factors:

Seeing your beautiful landscape just feels good. It’s why you invested in your landscaping. It’s why you maintain it. Coming home or going to work with it looking beautiful beats knowing there is the chore of all the work you need to do or have done.

Enjoy your property and yard. Leave the maintenance to the professionals

It will look better, you’ll feel better and it will increase the longevity of your landscape elements.

Rather than “Should, you hire a professional team to maintain your landscaping?”, you should be asking “Which residential maintenance plan or commercial maintenance plan is right for me?”

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