Many homeowners view fall as the season of settling down with the near arrival of winter, but there are still plenty of things to do in the yard. This time of year is all about prepping your lawn for it to not only survive the cold winter but also have an extra boost of energy once springtime arrives. Utilizing ways to strengthen your yard, as well as support the environment, is beneficial to your local ecosystem. Check out these eco-friendly fall lawn care tips to prepare your lawn this fall:
Let Clippings Fall
You still need to mow your lawn throughout the fall season, depending on your growing season. Instead of bagging up the clippings, choose to mow the lawn without the bag to allow grass clippings to return to the soil. Doing so will give the grass a natural boost of energy as the clippings break down quickly and provide the soil with vital nitrogen. Letting the clippings fly will also help the environment as you will have less yard waste going to the landfill each week.
Mulch Fallen Leaves
Many homeowners will have fallen leaves on their lawn during the colder fall season. Instead of raking up the leaves to dispose of them, consider mulching the leaves into smaller pieces and spreading them out over of the lawn. Fallen leaves are a natural way that the ecosystem returns nutrients to the soil. Allowing whole leaves to stay on your lawn may promote fungus growth but mulching the leaves into more manageable sizes will help them break down before fungus can take hold. Renting a leaf mulcher is one option, but many homeowners will choose to mow over their fallen leaves to cut them up and disperse them over the lawn. Again, doing this will help to cut down on yard waste making it a very eco-friendly lawn care option.
Seed Bare Areas
After a busy summer season, you may notice that there are areas of your lawn that are looking thin or are entirely bare. Make good use of the fall season by seeding those areas of the lawn that need some coverage. Reseeding exposed regions is an eco-friendly option in that it prevents water from running off your yard as well as keeps the growth of weeds down that would use those bare spots as breeding grounds. Choosing to add seed during the fall should give the seedlings enough time to germinate and sprout before colder weather arrives. Make sure to water the newly seeded areas frequently to provide them with the best chance at surviving until spring.
Aerate the Soil
Fall is a great time to allow your soil some breathing room. It would be best if you aerate your lawn once every two years to provide extra nutrients, water, and sunlight to the grass root system. This eco-friendly way to prepare your lawn is a great option to do before adding any excess nutrients to the soil so that the root system can receive some as well. Consider renting an aerator that will cut out circular pieces of the soil up and out of the ground to make this job easy. For homeowners who want an even more eco-friendly option, without using gas or emitting exhaust, consider purchasing aerating spiked shoes or do the process by hand with a pitchfork.
Use Organic Fertilizers
Choosing to add energy to your lawn during the fall is a great way to prepare it for the upcoming winter. Organic fertilizers will not only strengthen the root system now but will also provide energy to the grass in the dead of winter. Using fertilizers like this will also prepare the lawn to green up quickly once warmer temperatures arrive in spring. Consider choosing a fertilizer that states that it is organic on the package or use your natural energy sources, like compost, to feed the lawn well this fall.
Caring for your lawn is a job that requires some time and maintenance. Choosing to spend time in your yard this fall with these eco-friendly tips will help to ensure that your lawn is healthy this coming winter.
James Witts is an eco-conscious home improvement writer. He is constantly trying to find new ways to live off the grid while living in a tiny home with his wife, Andie.