Autumn is a wonderful time of year to add landscaping touches and take care of small things that add to curb appeal. The crisp air and fall colors make you want to work outdoors, get your family involved, and have fun! Invite your entire family to go with you to the end of your driveway. Turn around, face your home, and take a good look at what you see. Don’t be surprised if each family member focuses on something different. No two people see scenes exactly the same way. Ask each person, one by one, what he or she really likes about the scene and what might make the picture more attractive. Here are a few things you can do to get started.
Autumn Lawn Maintenance
Everyone enjoys looking at a well-kept lawn. If you notice brown or thin spots, this is the time to clear off the dead grass, add a little topsoil and reseed. Now that the weather is changing, mow the lawn with your mower set to leave slightly more grass than during summer mowing. This helps prepare the grass for winter. Water the newly seeded areas lightly, then water at least once a week unless it rains. When temperatures drop to freezing during the day, stop watering.
Water trees and shrubs deeply before the ground freezes. Prune dead limbs and branches that are getting too close to buildings or power lines. You may want to hire an arborist instead of doing the work yourself – it can be dangerous. Every year, accidents and fatal injuries happen while removing unwanted branches. Also, pruning done improperly has the potential to destroy the shrub or tree that you worked so hard to grow and protect.
Time to Clean Up!
Rake and remove leaves and other debris. Put away outdoor summer equipment that won’t be used until next year. Clean gutters and drains, and look for signs of moisture or rainwater flowing toward your home instead of away. Make whatever changes are needed to ensure that rain and snow won’t cause difficulties.
If your home has a basement, look closely in and around each window well. Remove any clutter or debris. One great way to keep your window wells clean of debris is by adding egress window well covers. If your window wells have polycarbonate or steel window well covers, be sure to close them. Having an egress window well cover also prevents critters seeking shelter from exploring down the window well.
Now Add Color
Would the curb appeal of your home be better with a bit more color? Replace annual plants that no longer are in bloom with fall-flowering annuals. If you’d like a more permanent arrangement, choose perennials. Autumn is an excellent time to plant fall bulbs such as crocuses, daffodils, and tulips, all of which will flower next spring.
Would your family like another tree or two in the front yard? Check with your local cooperative extension agent to learn what would be best for your area. Trees can increase the value of your property as they make the property more appealing (read about more benefits here). Autumn tree plantings can be successful if they are carefully selected for your climate and soil conditions and if they are properly tended both before and after the trees are placed in the soil. Be sure to find out from your local utility company what might be underground before you determine just where to put your new trees.
Bring on Autumn!
To complete the look of your autumn landscape, drape a garland of artificial fall leaves along the top edge of a fence or railing or choose a welcoming door wreath or outer mat capitalizing on red, brown, and gold hues. Keep your decorative touches minimal; less is more when you are working to increase curb appeal.
When the landscaping of your home projects a clean, cared-for, “just right” look, prospective buyers automatically want to learn more. In addition, the fact that your family worked together as a team is sure to bring joy every time anyone views the results of your autumn landscaping efforts.