Taking care of your yard and home are important, but they’re definitely not the easiest tasks. Far from it, honestly. But that’s what makes it all the more rewarding, right? In order to take good care of your lawn, there are certain things you need to maintain, and certain tools needed to properly maintain it. Be it an unruly lawn or a dying tree that threatens to damage your or someone else’s house. Here are some tips to properly maintain your yard.
Prune your trees and shrubs at the right time
While it’s a good idea to keep things pruned in general, there are some times that are going to be better than others. Typically, trees and shrubs are pruned in late winter or early spring. This is done when lighter-colored new growth appears, and thus, they will have adequate time to for the cuts to heal and form new buds. For shrubs, some should not be pruned at this time, as pruning before the shrubs bloom is likely to cut off the dormant bulbs. Shrubs that bloom in spring should thus be pruned after they bloom. Examples of these kinds of shrubs include magnolias and lilacs. If you don’t know when your tree or shrub should be pruned, find out what species it is and look online.
Deal with any dead trees
Dead trees are not only an unsightly feature of any lawn, but they are also potentially dangerous. They may stand for a long time, but the moment that your dead tree comes down, you could see it doing considerable damage. A fallen tree, even a dead one, can do devastating property damage, or even hurt someone. Even a branch can do a lot of damage. Thus, when dealing with this situation, you need to decide what to do with a dead tree.
The first option is to look into an arborist (also known as a tree surgeon) who can deal with the problem. This is what most people tend to do with a problem this large, and is a good idea, just because there are right and wrong ways to take down a tree. Arborists know how to approach cutting off dead branches and how to cut down the tree itself, in such a way that does not cause it to come crashing down and harm people or property.
If you decide to do it on your own, there are some things you need to take into consideration. First, you need to be sure that you know what you’re doing. Do you have a chainsaw? Are you good with an axe? Do you have all the right equipment for the job? If yes, that still might not be enough. A smaller tree is a lot more manageable, but even that can be dangerous if you’re not careful. Check to see if your tree is leaning in a particular direction. If the direction it’s falling has nothing for it to break or no one to hurt, then that’s good.
Another thing to keep in mind is dead branches that are still attached to the tree. When it’s coming down, it’s very possible that a branch could come loose and come crashing down on you, doing quite a lot of harm in the process. If you think for even a moment that you cannot safely take the tree down, or that you don’t have the requisite skill or tools, consult an arborist who can do it instead.
Pull your weeds
If you’ve got a garden, you need to make sure that you weed it regularly, otherwise these pesky plants will run rampant on it. You should be good to weed your garden about once a week. Pulling them when they’re young makes them easier to pull, so don’t let them linger.
Address the leaves
Every autumn, you will inevitably have to deal some leaves on the ground. Not only can they make your lawn look messy, but the leaves may blow into your neighbors’ lawn, which would certainly not endear you to them.
Despite that, there is actually a good argument for why you should not collect the leaves from your lawn. One of the main advantages of this is that the leaves can actually help you deal with weeds. The leaves become a natural mulch, keeping the weeds under control and serving as fertilizer for your soil as they break down over time. Thus, instead of raking your leaves, consider mulching it instead and spreading the leaf mulch across your lawn for the winter. Plus, your leaves will just go to a landfill anyway.
Be mindful of water usage
While your lawn gets a lot of value from water, that doesn’t mean you need to go overboard with it. There are ways you can keep your lawn healthy without breaking the bank on your water bill. The ideal approach for this is to play it by ear. One year, your summer might be particularly harsh, while another year, Mother Nature does all the watering for you, and helps you lower your carbon footprint at the same time. No point in exclusively using an automated sprinkler system.