Your clients’ landscapes may be going dormant, but your business doesn’t have to! There are plenty of opportunities to expand your offerings even as the temperatures drop, and the sun sets earlier each day. Late fall is the perfect time to offer clients the help they need to prep their gardens and yards for winter and to plan for the next growing season.
Give them a jump start on their beautiful spring landscape now and even possibly saving them time and money by getting the work done during your less busy time of the year.
Falling leaves, dying perennials and annuals, and diseased plantings can create a real mess. Besides looking untidy, old plants can harbor disease, pests, and funguses. Don’t let your clients’ landscapes go to bed for the winter without clearing what spring and summer left behind. Remove debris from planting beds and, while you’re at it, thoroughly weed them too. When warm weather hits again, their landscape will be tidy and ready for healthy new growth.
Many soil amendments require time to work properly and improve the soil. Adding them in fall, during garden bed cleanups, allows time for the materials to start breaking down, enriching the soil, and becoming biologically active, resulting in better soil and healthier plants in the spring. You’ll also save you and your clients the preparation effort and time during the busy planting season.
After the first hard frost, apply a thick 3-inch layer of mulch. It will have the same benefits of spring/summer mulching, but also work to protect plantings and the now amended soil from the freeze/thaw cycles of the winter. These freeze/thaw patterns put stress on anything in the top few inches of your beds, including plant roots. Mulch moderates the temperature swings.
Tree and Shrub Care
It’s important to prune certain species during their dormant season. Prune summer-blooming shrubs, evergreens, and deciduous trees. Autumn’s withering and falling leaves open up plants for inspection and easy pruning. Remove any broken or wayward limbs by making a clean-cut close to the trunk. Trim overgrown shrubs and evergreens.
Some shrubs will benefit from being protected from winter’s harsh temperatures and winds. Take time to wrap tender plantings with burlap to help insulate them and get them through the winter.
Now is the perfect time to aerate, fertilize, and reseed your clients’ lawns. The cooler temps encourage deeper root growth. Give them a clean, healthy jump-start on their lawn for spring.
Sprinkler System Winterization
Avoid the spring gush of a broken sprinkler system by taking steps now to protect your clients’ investment. Draining or blowing out their system of all water will prevent it from freezing and cracking over the winter. While you are at it, suggest that homeowners drain and disconnect hoses and shut off the outdoor water supply to prevent damage.
Landscape Design and Planning
What better time than fall and winter to plan for the spring growing season! Offer your expertise and design know-how. Making sure you and your clients are ready to go as early as possible will benefit not only them but also your business. You could even incorporate some plantings that will help landscapes look vibrant all through the winter too.
Don’t let winter’s grip strangle your business. These services can take you into the colder weather and beyond.
And, if you still need organic mulch as you put those landscapes to bed, call us. We are stocked and ready to deliver for free.