October Giveaway Results | Sponsored by Cumming Local

Recently, Greenshooz provided a giveaway on our webiste for one lucky Cumming Local reader to receive a “Fall Yard Clean-Up” – complete with edging, mowing, weeding, blowing, seasonal color, pinestraw & more!  Greenshooz worked with the Homeowners & their  home’s style to complete the transformation.  And in the process, we all get to be the lucky recipient of a step-by-step guide for giving our yard the proper clean  up too!

A Fall Yard Clean-Up

For some, the thought of a fall cleanup evokes childhood memories of colorful, cool autumn days spent playing outside in the leaves, the final few weeks before winter sets in. For others, it signifies a daunting task that may remain until spring (depending upon how well the Falcons are playing).  To help ease this process and inspire homeowners to prepare their gardens for winter, we’ve created a step-by-step guide on how to refresh the look of your home for the holidays.

Step 1: Trimming Shrubs –While trimming shrubs may seem more painful than pulling teeth, getting into a habit of doing it will not only benefit the look of your home, but your shrubs (and neighbors) will thank you too! Although there’s no rule-of-thumb on shaping, we suggest complimenting the architecture of your home.

Trimming Shrubs – Instyle with the Home

Step 2: Pruning – Some plants prefer to be pruned with hand clippers rather than a hedge trimmer.  For example, the roses and hydrangeas seen here are trimmed back to control the growth and maintain proper shaping. The best time for cutting back rose bushes is in January; however, roses can be lightly pruned during the growing season. Hydrangeas, on the other hand, should only be trimmed back to maintain growth. Ideally, this should be done in September, but not annually because most hydrangeas will not bloom the year after they’ve been pruned.

Pruning Roses

Step 3: Edging – Edging flower beds and concrete always gives a clean, finished look to any home. While many homeowners retire their mowers during the winter months, keep your edgers handy.  Edging monthly or even bi-weekly can mean the difference between ho-hum and oh-wow!

Edging Flower Beds

Step 4: Blowing – Inevitably, leaves find a way to settle into the tightest corners surrounding the perimeter of your home. Blowing them out of the flowerbeds and into your grass is the most efficient way of gathering them.  Once collected, bag as many leaves as possible from the grass before mowing.

Blowing Leaves & Debris

Step 5: Mowing – This time of year, mowing your lawn is still a good idea.  If you don’t regularly bag the grass clippings, the mower can mulch the grass and remaining leaves for natural soil conditioning. If you prefer to bag, remember to keep the grass a little taller than your typical “summer cut” for a natural defense against weed germination.  If you have Bermuda sod, we recommend cutting it once or twice a month until the grass goes completely dormant.

Time to Mow!

Step 6: Blowing (Again) – Whether you’ve mulched your grass clippings or bagged them, blowing leaves and grass clippings off the lawn, walkway, and driveway after you’ve mowed is a good idea. Don’t forget to blow the flowerbed border and concrete edges to protect the clean lines you’ve just created.

Step 7: Installing Seasonal Color – Add a “wow factor” to your home with a little bit of color. Here’s a foolproof way to plant flowers. Find an area to plant, clear away any pine straw, mulch, grass or weeds, add top soil to the bed, plant the flowers in the new top soil, cover the soil with mini-nugget mulch, and water. Annuals such as pansies and violas should provide a colorful arrangement through April. Remember to “dead-head” the spent flowers to encourage new growth.

Bringing in the Color

Step 8: Installing Pine Straw or Mulch – One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make is not refreshing their pine straw or mulch frequently enough. We recommend doing it twice a year, or annually at a minimum. The benefits to mulching are significant. It serves as a natural weed control, offers nutrients to your soil, helps maintain moisture in the beds, and keeps your home looking great!

Installing Pine Straw

Put all that together & you end up with something as beautiful as this …