How to Prepare Your Outdoor Living Space for Fall and Winter

What you do with your outdoor living space during the summer and fall months has the potential to change its overall health and appearance year-round.

This content is sponsored by Lawn Doctor. 

Spring is the season that’s most often associated with maintaining outdoor living spaces. From lawn care and gardening to purchasing new accessories for your entertaining area, the nice weather traditionally inspires homeowners to spruce up their front and backyards. But it’s actually what you do to your outdoor living spaces during the summer and fall that has the greatest impact on whether or not your space will be healthy year-round.

“It’s a natural reaction for homeowners to really think about lawn care and their yards in the spring. After people are cooped up indoors all winter, it makes sense to start engaging in outdoor activities like gardening as soon as the weather starts to get nice again,” said Scott Frith, CEO of Lawn Doctor. “But if you really want to make the most of your green space, fall is the most important time of year. It’s essential to get your lawn the nutrients it needs before winter comes and it goes into hibernation.”

In order to ensure that your outdoor living space is prepped for the colder months ahead, there are a few simple steps that homeowners can take either on their own or with the help of professionals. When it comes to your lawn, Frith says to focus on two critical tasks: aeration and seeding. The first involves removing clumps of soil from lawns so that they have access to more water, air and nutrients. Seeding, on the other hand, involved planting seeds before your turf is too dense and weeds break through. By allowing plants to germinate over the colder months, you’ll also be further protected from unwanted pests and insects.

From a gardening perspective, preparing your outdoor living space for fall and winter involves cleaning up and getting organized at the end of the summer. That’s why Sally Callander, founder of Callander Garden Design, offers her clients a list of services that she advises before heading into the cooler months. The list includes everything from cutting back perennials, rolling up hoses and turning off sprinkler timers to replacing bulbs in any light fixtures, cleaning out planter containers and trimming shrubs one last time before winter hits.

“Maintaining your outdoor living space is something that should be on your radar across all seasons. But this time of year can’t be overlooked—a little cleaning before the colder months goes a long way,” Callander said.

While the experts recommend taking these steps to ensure that your outdoor living space is spruced up 365 days a year, the truth of the matter is that every front and backyard will react differently. There’s no one size fits all approach to keeping up with your outdoor living space’s health. However, using these tips will help you figure out the method that’s best for your specific home.

“Of course, every lawn and outdoor living space is a little bit different. But following these simple rules is a great place to start,” said Frith. “Build a strong foundation now so that your lawn looks great when winter is over and you’re anxious to enjoy it again.”