Summer is around the bend and before you know it you have to get your hands on cleaning up the mess left by autumn and winter in your yard, in case you were too busy to get it done through the seasons that have gone by.
The idea of a clean yard refreshes the mind and brings peace to the soul. Let’s start getting the job done with this smart spring yard cleanup checklist to spice up your residential or commercial landscaping.
Follow the Big Easy Landscaping steps in any order whichever is most convenient or comfortable for you or if you don’t have time to get your hands dirty, contact your local landscape contractor.
A local landscape contractor will provide landscaping or groundskeeping workers that are committed to maintaining your property by hand or with the use of power tools or equipment or a combination of both. They typically perform tasks included in the spring yard checklist below:
The Ultimate Spring Yard Cleanup Checklist
Mow like a pro by following this mowing guide:
- Do not always mow in the same direction to prevent unsightly stripes on your lawn. If you mowed one direction the last time, mow perpendicularly against that direction this time
- Mow mid to late in the morning when the due has dried and the air is still cool
- Never remove one-third of the grass blade at one mowing. Taller grass keeps the soil moist and cool
- Cut grass at a 3 inches height but deeply
- Keep your mowing blades sharp
- Water infrequently
Trimming or Pruning
Pruning makes way for new growth and helps prevent issues with plant disease because it allows more air and sunlight into the center of trees and shrubs.
Do not prune shrubs that bloom in the spring like Forsythia, Korean spice viburnum, and lilacs. Prune shrubs that bloom later in the year like butterfly bush, rose of sharon, lavender, Bluebeard, and Beautyberry.
Of course, dead limbs and branches that have been winterkilled should be pruned, as well as overgrown bushes, shrubs, trees or vines that cover your windows or are encroaching on walkways and outdoor gathering places.
Raking up a thick layer of fallen leaves on top of your plants and other rakeable debris prevents lawn suffocation. Deep raking will also help control the build-up of thatch on your lawn.
Clean up other debris like branches, twigs, and blown-in-your-yard trash, including pet waste.
Remove Thatch build-up
Thatch is a layer of grass cuttings left like a carpet on your lawn, usually after mowing. It is manageable in small amounts because they act as mulch keeping the soil moist and cool. But if there is too much of it, your lawn will suffer because it prevents the absorption of air, nutrients, and water of your grass.
Dethatch by deep raking or by using a dethatching rake or a rented power rake.
Aerate your lawn
The passage of spring and winter on your lawn with all the moisture might have compacted your soil, preventing it from properly absorbing air, water, and nutrients.
Patches on your grass or having trouble sticking a pencil into the surface of your turf are a clear sign that your soil is compacted.
You can hire a landscape contractor to aerate your lawn or do it yourself using a foot-operated core aerator, a rolling drum plug aerator, or an aerator attachment on your tiller or mower.
Remove dead plants, dead plant parts, rotted mulch, and weeds
Carefully pull out annuals that don’t grow back after winter and dead leaves and twigs from perennials.
Remove dead vegetables, flowering plants, and weeds as you clean up vegetable or flower beds. Also, clear out rotted mulch so they don’t smother your plants.
The Ultimate Guide to Designing your Home or Commercial Landscape after a Spring Yard Cleanup
Landscape architecture is understood as a discipline resulting from the relationship between inhabited landscape (residential), geography, and urban space.
Landscape maintenance or groundskeeping is the art of keeping a landscape clean, healthy, safe, and attractive in a residential, commercial, or institutional setting for aesthetic or functional purposes.
After a spring yard cleanup, you can move forward to improving the design of your home or commercial landscape following this guide:
- Edge your plant beds to define the spaces of your landscape and to prevent the turf from crawling into your bed areas.
- Mulch your plant beds to protect them from the punishing summer heat. Mulch prevents the regrowth of weeds, provides nutrients for the soil, and keeps the soil cool and moist.
- Prepare planting beds and fertilize with compost to make your soil more healthy and friable.
- Install trees and shrubs and plant hardy perennial flower borders. The 1990 Clean Air Act states that “planting deciduous trees in locations around your home to provide shade in the summer, but to allow light in the winter” is a choice you can make to help clean the air. Furthermore, landscape architects recommend designing awesomely by utilizing trees, shrubs, and other plants to lower a home or commercial establishment’s heating or cooling cost by as much as 50 percent in the summer and up to 8 percent in the winter.
- Have your sprinkler or irrigation system checked by your local landscape contractor just to make sure it is clean and in good working condition. Consider having one installed if you don’t have it yet. This is a good investment for your landscape garden, especially that you’re preparing for the warm summer climate.
- Consider these landscape designing awesome ideas for your home or business from the American Society of Landscape Architects:
- Healing gardens – landscapes with medical benefits like reducing stress and boosting the immune system
- Energy Savings – utilizing trees and other plants to reduce energy costs
Smart Clean and Design for your Home or Business
Preparing for the coming summer with a thriving yard of lush green lawn and beautiful flowers will definitely uplift your mood and increase your property’s appeal.
Follow the smart spring yard cleanup checklist above and the ultimate guide to designing your home or business landscape and you will be looking forward to the next season.
Though there are many DIY opportunities for creativity in landscape design and presentation, you can always contact a seasoned landscape contractor to do all the elbow grease for you.