Fall is in full force here in Iowa! We watched the gingko trees put on a spectacular show of yellow, the Japanese maples create dynamic blends of red, and sweetgums turn to an eye-catching shade of purple.
Now that the trees have done their fair share of color changing, we’re seeing their branches become bare as leaves start to fall to the ground. And while the temperatures are still on the warm side, we’re expecting a cold front in the next couple of weeks, a signal that the winter months are ahead.
With colder weather in sight, now is the time to take advantage of these warmer days. Get outside, work on your landscape and enjoy what an Iowa fall has to offer! Here are a few ways to get the most out of the season:
• Add fall color to your front step, deck or patio with decorative pots and seasonal containers. In the fall, use colorful, crisp perennials like mums and asters with some fountain grasses for added dimension and height.
• If you still have leaves in your flower beds, get them ready for winter by cleaning them out and adding a 2-3 inch layer of mulch to them. The mulch will help prevent damage from the freezing and thawing that is around the corner.
• Make a trip to one or a couple of central Iowa’s many apple orchards and pumpkin patches. Not only are these a great way to spend your weekend, but pumpkins make great decorations around your landscape!
• If you’re a do-it-yourself gardener, now is a great time to get out and shop for clearance tools like spades, buckets, shovels, gloves, pots and anything else you might need for when spring rolls around again.
• Spending all this time outside might get you thinking about ways you could improve your landscape, like adding a new patio, walkway, retaining wall or fire pit. Take notes on what you’re interested in changing so when you’re ready to contact a designer to begin your project, all your ideas and notes are ready!
What do you like to do during the fall season? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.