Getting Your Yard Ready for Spring

Spring is right around the corner, so you will need to make the right preparations to enjoy the season. The outdoor spaces you have in your yard play an important part of having an enjoyable and comfortable landscape. Depending on where you live, the winters can either be long and frigid or short and mild. Whether you live in a warmer climate state like Florida or in a colder climate state like Minnesota, you need to have a plan in place to get your yard ready and clean for the spring. Here are the following tips for getting your yard ready for the spring.

1) Clean Up Any Yard Debris

Leaves, branches, and various other debris will need to be removed before you can consider any other kind of landscaping. Leaves and branches will always be falling over during the winter months, so it’s wise to monitor the grounds of your yard to see how much of these objects have fallen. Remove old debris early and often so that light and oxygen can access the grass underneath. You will also avoid problems involving moisture and insect breeding by removing debris. Any trash or unsightly items need to be removed from your yard right away.

2) Treat Your Lawn

A healthy lawn for the entire year requires early treatment. One of the best ways to make your lawn happy is to apply fertilizer early. This will give your grass a jump-start in the early months of the year, giving it the necessary nutrients to grow strong early. However, you don’t want to apply too much fertilizer because that can potentially harm your grass.

A simple watering of your trees and plants, along with your lawn, also helps. Especially if precipitation is light and the ground is dry, watering your yard will give it the boost of health it needs.

3) Increase Curb Appeal

It is easy to increase the curb appeal of your home if you use medium-sized shrubs with shallow root systems. These shrubs are known as “house huggers” and they tend to hide unappealing cement, giving your home the outward appearance of being grounded in the landscape. Shrub plants that are highly recommended for using at the front of your home include Juniper, Spruce, Boxwood, Inkberry, Viburnum, Deutzia and Weigela.

4) Plan for Planting and Soil Preparations

Along with general cleaning, planting and soil prep are equally important for the upcoming gardening season. Create a plan for what you are going to do for your lawn. Ask local gardening experts for advice and recommendations on which plants and flowers work best in your area. It is best to remain local when you shop for plants and flowers. Before you decide to plant anything, map out where exactly you are going to do the majority of your planting.

5) Mulch and Plant

If you normally have flower beds or a garden, then spring is the ideal time of year to put down a heavy layer of mulch. You will replenish your flower beds by adding new mulch, and it also provides an additional layer of protection against hindrances like weeds and grass intrusion. Dead branches should also be trimmed back if you have plants that struggled to survive the winter. If you start planting shrubs  in the early spring, make sure you choose frost-tolerant plants that can endure the early spring weather.

Here is a word of caution concerning mulch; Try your very best to avoid piling too much mulch up against any fence lines. If this occurs, this can lead to problems involving mold or mildew, and if your fence is made of wooden materials it can be left vulnerable to rot and water damage due to the mulch. Make sure your fence is either fully clear of making any contact with your mulch, or at least barely touching it.

6) Organize and Refresh Gardening Tools

Get your gardening tools ready by cleaning and sharpening them. After removing all the unnecessary objects from your yard, any equipment you have for landscaping must be organized in the appropriate place. Whether that be inside a garage, a shed or a barn, keep track of where your tools and equipment are so you can be able to do your yard work in a timely manner. This practice teaches you to have better organizational skills and it helps improve the safety of your property.

7) Prune Your Trees Correctly

There are a few rules to follow when pruning your trees. The first rule is to be mindful of a tree’s leaves. The leaf is the source of the tree’s food supply, so try your best not to remove more than 25% of  a tree’s leaves when pruning.

The second rule is to know more about how and where you make pruning cuts than when you make them. This means that you have to be delicate when your prune a tree, and you have to be aware of the positioning of your cuts. Cutting down half of the tree is not ideal.

The third rule is to aim small, miss small. Make your cuts smaller in diameter because trees can seal over pruning cuts by adding new growth. Larger gashes of cuts result in longer healing times for the tree. Smaller cuts take much less time to close in comparison.

8) Keep a Gardening Journal

While you are performing tasks in getting your yard ready for spring, it is wise to keep track of what you are doing. The best way to do this is to keep a gardening journal so that you can identify what has been done, and what still needs to get done. A gardening journal helps in planning for the upcoming season as it allows you to review past weather patterns, frost dates, watering schedules, and plot arrangements. For example, if you have a short list of things to do to spruce up your yard throughout one week, you can schedule all these things as separate tasks on different days of the week.

9) Replace Old Yard Features

If you have pre-existing yard features that have been around for a couple years, it is possible to freshen them up. However, once these features have reached the end of their lifespan, you need to start planning for life after these features. Removal by demolition always helps, but you can also carefully disassemble certain features so that the process won’t be so messy. Old fences, decks, pools, sheds, and barns are all considered to be yard features that can be demolished.

10) Select Plants that Fit Your Climate

Lastly, if you are going to spruce up your yard by adding many beautiful plants, you have to find the ones that are the most appropriate. In other words, select plants that will be the best fit for the climate you live in. Research your USDA growing zone before you start buying new plants. Whether you are aiming to design a landscape that is low-maintenance, water-wise, or drought-tolerant, knowing which growing zones work best for certain plants will give you a better idea of what to purchase.

For more information on how to research USDA growing zones, check out this link.

To Reseed or Not Reseed?

This optional tip is highly dependent on the climate area you live in. When it comes to certain circumstances where it’s unavoidable, reseeding your lawn in the spring may be the only option. However, if you can avoid reseeding your lawn, then please do so.

The reason why is because it is impossible to reseed alongside pre-emergent treatment of crabgrass and weeds. This is especially true if you live in a state like Texas. Pre-emergents prevent all seeds from germinating, and this includes grass seeds. Putting down new seed along with pre-emergents at the same time can only lead to disaster. The best thing to do is to reseed at the beginning of the fall season. Fall to winter is a long enough time period for the seeds to germinate and establish roots.

Contact a Real Estate Expert

Yard maintenance is often an ignored art of sorts. Sometimes we take for granted all the hard work that goes into maintaining a well kept yard. The properties that you see listed on real estate websites do not become gorgeous overnight. It is instead a lengthy process that involves plenty of trial and error.

If you intend to become a seller in the real estate market and you want to make the right preparations for your soon-to-be former home, then contact our real estate experts on the Hansen Team! Spring is a great season to put your home on the market, but if you don’t get your yard ready by then, you will have more difficulty in selling your property. However, if you follow any of the above tips, you will put yourself in a better position to strike a sale with a happy buyer. If you need assistance in getting your yard ready for the spring, then feel free to contact the Hansen Team today!

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