Fall into an Outdoor Home Improvement Project

There are only a few weeks of summer left and this is the time of the year that we begin to focus on back to school, Labor Day and getting ready for fall home improvement projects.  Fall is an excellent time to start a home improvement project both inside and outside of your home.  In preparation for fall, we will be doing a 2 part blog series on fall home improvement projects. Today we will focus on outdoor projects.

With the weather getting cooler, it is much more pleasant to work outside in September and October than in the middle of July.  Plus, if you do the work now, you will reap the benefits during the spring and summer months.

Plant Perennials

Early fall is the best time to plant perennials like tulips and daffodils, which will bloom in early spring.  Carefully examine your yard to decide where the bulbs should be planted.  Since these flowers come back annually, you want the area you plant them in to be conducive to the spring sun and at least 5 inches from your home&;s foundation.  Large bulbs, like tulips and daffodils, should be planted about 5-6 inches apart and 8 inches deep while smaller bulbs, like crocuses and dwarf irises, should be planted about 3-4 inches apart and 3 inches deep.  This spacing will keep your garden looking lush and full without overcrowding the bulbs.

Don&;t forget to plant some fall flowers as well.  Mums are a great choice because they will come back each year.  These flowers thrive on the shortened sunlight of fall so be sure to plant them away from street lights and porch lights that may shorten their bloom time.  Do not trim dead branches until after the winter months as they protect the plant from the elements.  Be sure to fertilize them in the spring to keep them looking great for next fall.

Fertilize & Aerate Your Lawn

Fertilizing and aerating the lawn will make your lawn green and lush next year.  Be sure the soil has some moisture in it before aerating.  If it has been dry, wait until after a little bit of rain- about an inch or so is good- and then attempt the aeration.  It makes it a lot easier to move the dirt.  When buying a fertilizer, be sure to pay attention to the square footage each bag will cover.  This will ensure you are not running out for more in the middle of the project or be stuck with extra bags later.  There are many brands on the market that are made for fall fertilizing and will protect your lawn during the harsh winter months.

Inspect Your Home

While you are outside, it is also a good idea to inspect your roofing, siding and gutters.  Check for any broken or lifted shingles, cracked or wavy siding and other items that should be repaired before they present a bigger problem.  Be sure to clean your gutters out as well to keep your home safe from water damage and unwanted critters.  If you do not want to spend your time cleaning the gutters, you could install Gutter Helmet on your home.  This gutter protection system will keep your home safe without the hassle and danger of cleaning them yourself.

What outdoor home improvement projects are you going to tackle this fall?  Be sure to subscribe to our blog so you don&;t miss the remaining blog in our 2 part fall home improvement series.  You can subscribe by email using the top right button or via RSS feed by clicking here.

Photo Credit: Flickr user Sharon & Jerry Adkisson’s

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