When mowing a new lawn from sod, not seed, wait 2 to 3 weeks before mowing to give the sod a chance to root into the soil. To test if it’s ready to mow, back off on watering and walk on the turf; if it’s firm enough to walk on, it’s good to mow. (You can also gently pull up on the sod to check whether or not it has rooted.) Don’t cut the grass shorter than 2 inches for the first few times. Be very careful while you mow so you don’t pull up any sod (if a section gets moved around, just put it back in place).

6. The People: If the previous five reasons aren’t enough to inspire you to hold off on cleaning up the garden, I’ll add one final reason to the list: You. There is so much beauty to be found in a winter garden. Snow resting on dried seed pods, berries clinging to bare branches, goldfinches flitting around spent sunflowers, juncos hopping beneath old goldenrod fronds, frost kissing the autumn leaves collected at the base of a plant, and ice collected on blades of ornamental grasses. At first, you might not consider yourself to be one of the reasons not to clean up the garden, but winter is a lovely time out there, if you let it be so.
Delaying your garden’s clean up until the spring is a boon for all the creatures living there. Instead of heading out to the garden with a pair of pruning shears and a rake this fall, wait until next April. By then, all the critters living there will be emerging from their long winter nap. And even if they haven’t managed to get out of bed by the time you head out to the garden, most of them will still manage to find their way out of a loosely layered compost pile before it begins to decompose. Do Mother Nature a big favor and save your garden clean up until the spring. And, when spring does arrive, please use these pollinator-friendly tips for cleaning up the garden the right way.
When mowing, leave the clippings on the lawn. Grass clippings break down quickly and return beneficial nutrients to the soil. Mow often enough so too much isn’t removed at once and clippings are small. Removing too much of the grass blade shocks the grass and leaves piles of long clippings on the lawn that do not break down quickly and can smother growing grass.
If you're anything like us, you know that it's not just the inside that counts—when it comes to houses, that is! Accenting your home with natural elements, from flora and fauna to stonework and water features, makes for an instantly inviting space for guests (and not to mention a restful retreat for you!). Let these outdoor design ideas for shrubbery, walkways, and more inspire you to create your own beautiful backyard garden or front lawn oasis.
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