Be ready for a “lawn” winter’s nap

I don’t need to remind you that leaf cleanup is a never-ending battle and yet is absolutely essential to the health of your lawn. Leaves left scattered about for the winter will smother the turf. Don’t fret, however about getting every last leaf out of the plant beds. As they naturally compost, those few leaves will help insulate plants and provide the added benefit of valuable nutrients. Come next spring, you can remove any unsightly ones.

If you’re property is anything like mine, you’ll need about 9 days (not all at once) to catch all of the falling leaves. As for what do to with all the leaves you’ve raked, remember to recycle them in your own compost pile or bring them to your town recycling center. If you are using the leaves on your own compost pile, you should grind them up by running over them with your lawn mower to speed up the decomposition process. To move large piles of leaves, I recommend blowing them and piling them onto a tarp. Drag them to the edge of your property where the town of Southington will suck them up and dispose of them for you. Obviously that’s done here in Southington for residents. Cool benefit to being a taxpayer.

Once all your leaves are collected, cut your lawn one last time before the winter, trimming it as short as possible to prevent matting, disease and rodent damage. Ask a reputable lawn fertilizing company what height they’d recommend before making your final cut.

Mowing tip:

When you are done mowing, run your lawn mower until it runs out of gas. Gas left to sit in the tank over the winter will gum up your carburetor so it’ll be an issue starting it next spring. It’s a good idea to change the oil, grease the engine—then pull and inspect the spark plug. Hopefully in the spring, you’ll only have to add gas, sharpen the blade and get mowing again.

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