Prepare your plants and yard for the winter.
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Fall Yardwork To-Do List

Crisp, cool evening. Downright cold mornings. Chilling winds and swirling leaves. Fall has definately arrived here in Northern Colorado! The forecast shows another possible frost overnight tonight - Wednesday to Thursday. The temperatures will continue to dip lower as we head into winter and the frost is inevitable. Preparing the plants and lawn for winter is rarely anyone's favorite task, but care at this point of the year can make a big difference in next year's plant health.

Here's a to-do list to help you prepare for the changing season:
  • Keep an eye on the overnight temperatures. Anytime the temperature drops below 32 degrees there is the possibility of frost or freeze damage. My favorite weather forecasting service is Weather Underground. I love the hyper-localized weather predictions!
  • Bring in any plants you wish to keep in the house over the winter, if you haven't already.
  • If you have an irrigation system with a hose-end timer, remove the controller from the spigot. For instructions to disconnect the controller from your hose bib, scroll down to "Winterizing."
  • Disconnect your hoses from the spigots.
  • Drain and blow-out your home irrigation system. There are many local yard care companies which provide this service or you can do it yourself with an air compressor.
  • Remove the annual debris from your container gardens. (You can wait until the frost kills the plants.) Remove about a third of the soil as well. This minimizes the chance your pots will crack over the winter.
  • Remove any diseased foliage from your landscape plants and dispose of it in the garbage, not the compost pile.
  • Pull weeds now or spot spray with herbicide to avoid the weed seeds spreading in the spring.
  • Some people clean up all the leaves and spent plants in the fall; others wait to do that clean-up in the spring. Either way is fine, just be sure the pile of leaves on your flower bed isn't so thick it will smother the plants.
  • Leaves can be raked up and removed or use your lawn mower with the mulching attachment to chop up the leaves and leave the pieces on the lawn.
  • Mow the turf grass using a lower height setting on the mower. Cutting the grass shorter can help reduce the matting we see in the spring from the grass being under snow load.
  • Fertilize the turf grass using a good "winterizing" fertilizer.
  • Set reminders on your calendar so you remember to water over the winter. You should water your trees and shrubs every three to four weeks unless we've had some reasonable precipitation.
If you have questions or concerns, feel free to contact me.

PansiesFall Clean-up Service

As the 2016 growing season draws to a close (or after the frost finishes it), clean out your pottery and protect it for the winter. If you need help cleaning up and winterizing your container gardens, I offer a fall clean-up service. Please call (970) 988-3808 or contact me to schedule.

spigot connectionWinterizing Your Drip System

  1. Turn off the water at the spigot. Turn the hose-side toggle valve to release the water pressure.

  2. Detach the controller assembly at the spigot and below the filter/fertilizer unit. (See photo.) In case of threat of early freeze, remove this unit. Store control unit indoors for the winter.

    If the brass-Y is too tight to remove, unscrew the timer below the Y. Leave the toggle valves on both sides of the brass-Y turned to "on" to prevent freeze damage to your spigot.

  3. Remove the 9V battery for winter storage.

  4. Do not blow-out your drip irrigation system - the components cannot withstand the high pressure. It is highly unlikely an above ground system will have freeze damage.
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