Prepare your landscape for fall

Jillian Span Hofbauer

Fall is here, and transitioning your lawn and landscaping for the changing season is important. Ivan Stefanov, business account manager of Oakland Nursery, shares 10 quick tips to help you better prepare your landscape for the winter season. With a little time and effort in the fall, you can prepare your lawn to endure a long winter and flourish in the vibrant spring.

1. Apply winterizer fertilizer to your lawn to strengthen it and provide nutrients needed to combat cold weather.

2. Cut back perennials and any summer blooming bulb plants to eliminate damage by insects or disease.

3.Consider cover crop, such as Winter Rey or White Dutch Clover, for your vegetable garden to enrich the soil in organic matter. This provides nutrients, reduces erosion and improves soil structure.

4. Treat your tropical or houseplants with insecticide before moving them indoors for the cold season.

5. Fall is the perfect time for grass seeding. For best results, fill patches in your lawn or establish a new one as soon as possible because the seeding window closes fast in the fall.

6. Apply wilt-proof (leaf sealant) on the broadleaf evergreens to better prepare them for the cold and windy winter.

7. If you're thinking about starting an orchard, fall is the perfect time to plant fruit trees.

8. Cut back hybrid tea roses and mound compost or manure at the base for winter protection.

9. Well-established shrubs and trees require a fall feeding to increase winter hardiness and prepare the plants for the early spring flush of new growth. Fertilizers used in the fall should be low on nitrogen and high on phosphorus.

10. Drain and cover fountains, water features or bird baths and winterize ponds.

(Columbus Dispatch photo by Doral Chenoweth III)