This fall, between handing out candy, feasting and visiting Oakland Nursery, spend a little time on putting your landscape to bed. A minimal investment on good preparation will yield happier plants and jealous neighbors.
Whether you make your own compost using shredded fall leaves and yard clippings, or purchase commercially produced compost, top dressing with a few inches of this compost and working it into your planting beds will add organic matter and nutrients, improving the soil structure. To enhance our predominantly alkaline soils and lower the pH levels, incorporate acidic amendments such as peat moss, pinebark mulch or sulfur.
Fall is the time to plant spring blooming bulbs such as tulips, daffodils and grape hyacinths. It’s as easy as digging a trench or individual holes, adding bulb food or bone meal, placing the bulb in the hole, pointy side up, and cover. You may also want to add a repellant product to keep out nosey squirrels and chipmunks.
Be sure to dig up summer blooming bulbs, such as cannas, gladiolas and dahlias, for winter storage. Clean off any excess soil and vegetation and store in a dry area that will not freeze or get warmer than 60 degrees.
Now that our beds and bulbs are tucked in, it’s time to turn our attention to woody shrubs and trees. Remove dead wood, crossing branches and raise the canopy of trees if needed. Summer flowering plants, such as panicle hydrangea, weigela, spirea, butterfly bush and rose of Sharon, to name a few, can all be pruned back now to reduce size and rejuvenate leggy growth.
These steps, along with a dose of winterizer fertilizer for the lawn, will assure that you can relax and dream of a landscape that will awake in spring looking greener and healthier!
-Provided by Oakland Dublin