Altitude Sprinkler and Landscape has some advice on taking care of your landscape in the winter. Just because the temperature drops, and you don’t spend as much time outside, doesn’t mean that you can completely abandon your yard. To keep your lawn and landscape healthy over the winter, we suggest a few easy measures to take. Some can be done right now before the weather turns cold, but others should be continued throughout the season.
Prepare your lawn for winter by first aerating it while it is still vibrant and green. You can do the job yourself using a core aeration tool, or you can hire a professional landscaper. Aerating compacted soil will encourage the growth of microfauna as well as helping the roots of your grass access water and nutrients. Late fall is also the best time to seed new grass. By the time spring rolls around, you will have a thick and healthy lawn with a strong resistance to weeds.
Take the time to prune deciduous trees in the wintertime while they are dormant. This will help them resist certain diseases such as Fire Blight, which commonly affects fruit trees in Colorado. Overgrown spruces, firs, and other evergreens should be trimmed and shaped in winter too. Fertilizing your trees and shrubs in the fall will give them the optimum conditions for growth and replenishment as the temperatures cool down. With plenty of nutrients available, their root systems will stay strong and healthy over the winter months.
As temperatures drop, it is a good idea to cut your perennials back to within two inches of the ground. Adding a light mulch of hay or pine needles around the base of these stems will help to keep the plants insulated from the harshest temperatures. Adding a soil conditioner can boost the nutrition levels for lawns and plants over the winter. The winter months are some of the driest in Colorado, so it is important to keep watering your garden at least once per month, however, only water while the temperature is above freezing.
Remember, mid-October is the last chance to plant bulbs, so there’s no time to lose! Another chore to tackle before the cold weather sets in is winterizing your sprinkler system. This includes draining or blowing out any water left in the pipes, removing above ground sprinklers and shutting off your system for the season. This will prevent the great expense and inconvenience of burst pipes when the temperature drops below zero.