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Musings About Family, Travel And Gardening With Allen Martinson.


Fall: the Unsung Hero of the Landscape World

SEPTEMBER IS here. We begin to think fall around this time of year. The normal things in fall are back to school, football, music festivals and spending evenings outside with friends. Fall is the unsung savior of the landscape world. It’s one last hurrah for your landscape before winter takes over. The season marks the end of the summer’s heat and drought. For those last weeks of September, October and November your lawn and plants can thrive again.

You may have heard that fall is the best time for planting and it’s true: the mild weather makes it ideal for planting trees and shrubs, since lingering warm days and increased precipitation are key for a new plant growth. I love to plant this time of the year because plants have time to get a little growth up top and, more importantly, down below where it counts. The shrubs and trees planted should get some root stimulator or a slow release organic fertilizer with a high middle number which is phosphorus. These plants don’t have to move right into the heat like ones planted in the spring. Instead the fall planted landscape will start their new lives by going into shorter days, more rain, less stress. From winter they will slowly come out of dormancy in the springtime and be more prepared for the summer months ahead. The plants do better and the work for you is easier.

Your lawn is the same, getting a high middle number fertilizer helps the roots get stronger and you will notice a thicker, healthier lawn next spring if you will get a winterizer applied before it goes dormant in October. Keep in mind that a thick, healthy lawn leaves less room for weeds to creep in during the winter months.

THIS IS WHEN MIMI and I will prune all of the roses for one more flush of blooms. It takes exactly 45 days to get them blooming again after a good pruning so we will be looking for one more good rose show around mid October, I think it will look like spring again for those last few weeks. We are already lining up all the crazy pumpkins and gourds for you to decorate your house with. I love using those great colors with a healthy green background in the yard. That stuff looks great on the front porch but we use them in the landscape for the view from the kitchen window. The colors really sing when the leaves begin to turn yellow and red around the yard. I enjoy fall more than any other season for all of those reasons but I don’t forget to up my irrigation system for this last dry hurrah. Put your yard to bed this winter as healthily as you can by using plenty water and an organic slow-release fertilizer; the difference next spring will amaze you. I believe this is the time to lace up your boots with this Covid thing and not let your guard down. Keep yourself healthy and most of all help someone who may be feeling overly anxious or fearful of this dreadful virus and all the changes that are easier for some people then others to endure. Our yards are the one place where all that fear and anxiety can not be allowed in. Make it yours.

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