It’s not difficult to create a gorgeous, colorful garden during the spring and summer. But when the fall comes back around many gardeners call it quits for the year, and gardens often go neglected right the way through until the spring again. Which is a shame, because although it’s harder to keep things going it’s certainly not impossible! Our gardens are extensions of our homes, and so why resign yourself to the idea that they can only be used for half the year? With features like an outdoor fireplace or fire pit to keep warm, there’s still loads of opportunity to use the garden even when it’s a little chillier. Here are some of the ways you can keep it looking beautiful, and create a stunning looking display when all of your neighbor's gardens have long since died off.
Plan Your Beds, Borders and Pots
With the right seeds and bulbs your beds, borders and pots will bloom all year round with very little effort on your part. The key is to choose plants that flower at different times of the year, so as one lot is dying off the next are coming into bloom. Take a walk around your garden center and carefully check the back of seed packs to see when different things will flower. This may take some advance planning since some seeds and bulbs need planting at certain times of year, a year in advance. But once you’ve got this balance right your garden will give you a stunning display all year round. You’ll have no end of choice when it comes to plants that flower between April and September. October to March flowering plants will be slightly trickier to find but they do exist. A landscape architect will be able to advise you which plants to choose, and also where to place them for maximum impact.
Dotting some evergreen shrubs throughout the garden to will keep it looking lively. It also offsets all of the colorful flowers and brings in texture and interest regardless of the season. And remember, ‘evergreens’ don’t have to be green! There are lots of stunning red, orange and purple-leaved shrubs out there which keep their leaves all year round. This can help bring vibrant color to the garden without having to solely rely on flowers. Other evergreen plants will have bright berries on them over the autumn and winter, which is another way to bring color in.
Overseed Your Lawn
After the wear and tear of the summer, your lawn might not be at it’s best. Urine burns from pets, bald patches from being walked on and areas that have thinned out are all common. Use a thatch rake remove all of the dead grass, and then sprinkle down some grass seed over the bald patches as well as throughout. This is called overseeding, and helps the everything blend together as well as ‘thicken up’ your lawn. Now is a good time to do this, as the seedlings have the chance to get established before the first frost. This will give you a much healthier looking lawn all throughout the autumn and winter. It won’t need mowing much again until the spring since it won't do much growing at all in this time. But if you want to keep it looking smart, raise your lawn mower blades to winter height. Never mow when the ground is soft, as it will cause extreme damage to the lawn.